Once a couple decides to explore the option of surrogacy, the next question is how? Today, the Internet provides a wealth of resources on the topic; the prospective parents must carefully consider the validity of the information and the source's reliability. Many couples choose to work with an established agency. Two of the best known surrogacy agencies are the Center for Surrogate Parenting and Alternative Conceptions. There are surrogacy agencies that are established at the international, national, and local levels, so couples can investigate their options and choose to work with one that is compatible with their specific needs and desires.
In an agency setting, couples receive the benefit of experience and expertise in a unique and challenging field. A reputable agency should be able to provide most of the following services: management of initial medical screening, assistance in matching couples, legal consultation, medical coordination, fee administration, and ongoing guidance and support for both the couple and surrogate mother throughout the process.
Testimonials will often provide the best insight into an agency's program. If a couple decides that an agency environment is not suited for them, independent surrogacy relationships can be obtained in most states. It is advised that both the couple and surrogate mother seek legal counsel from an attorney who specializes in surrogate relationships. A surrogacy is a complex relationship, and it is important that everyone's rights are protected, specifically the baby's. Unfortunately, there has been controversy over surrogacy that has resulted in legal cases regarding the relinquishing of parental rights. Fortunately most states now have enacted laws to grant legal protection for individuals involved in a surrogacy contract.
Surrogacy is a very unique and amazing relationship for all parties involved. Diverse reasons motivate individuals to pursue surrogacy. Behind each person is some sort of obstacle, whether medical, relationship, or unknown that has prevented natural parenthood. Some see surrogacy as an attractive option, because it allows for a biological connection for the child to one or both parents. Surrogacy also allows couples to be very involved in both the pregnancy and birth—something they may or may not have with an adoption relationship. Most couples communicate regularly with the surrogate mother, attend doctor's visits, and are present at the birth.