Surrogacy in Baltimore [The Complete Guide]

The 7 Steps of the Baltimore Surrogacy Process

Ready to start learning about surrogacy in Baltimore, Maryland? We’re happy to help prospective intended parents and gestational carriers. Below are the seven general steps to start the process of surrogacy in Baltimore.

Step 1: Choose surrogacy.

The first and perhaps most important step is to decide whether or not surrogacy in Baltimore is right for you. Whether you’re a hopeful intended parent or a potential surrogate, there are a lot of things that you’ll need to consider before you can determine if this experience is right for you. To help make your decision, you’ll want to take a look at the pros and cons, Baltimore surrogacy laws, and reach out to a surrogacy professional that you’re interested in for more information about their particular support services.

As your Baltimore surrogacy attorney, Jennifer or Catelyn will always be here to offer more information and to guide you through the legal steps of the Baltimore surrogacy process.

Step 2: Choose the type of surrogacy and your professional.

There are a few types of surrogacies in Baltimore for you to choose from:

  • Gestational vs. Traditional: Traditional surrogates use their own eggs in the process, gestational surrogates do not. The vast majority of surrogacy professionals today only complete gestational surrogacies due to the increased legal and emotional risks of traditional surrogacy.
  • Compensated vs. Altruistic: Whether or not the surrogate receives base compensation in addition to reimbursement for the surrogacy-related medical and legal expenses. Not all states permit compensated surrogacy.
  • Domestic vs. International: The intended parents and surrogate either both reside in the U.S., or the two parties are in different countries. Not all surrogacy professionals will complete international surrogacies.
  • Agency vs. Independent: Surrogacy agencies screen your match, coordinate the process and provide support services from start to finish. In independent surrogacy, you’d handle all of this on your own.

The path that's right for you will largely depend on your circumstances and preferences. If you have any trouble deciding which option is best for you, don’t be afraid to reach out for more information.

Step 3: Complete the screening processes.

Depending on your situation, your screening experience will look a little different during the Baltimore surrogacy process. Here’s what the process may look like for you:

For Intended Parents:

A Home Assessment, if Needed* This step for your surrogacy in Baltimore will be performed by a licensed social worker. Typically, you’ll go through:

  • An in-home inspection: During this portion, a social worker will visit your home to gather more information about your life while assessing your home.
  • Interview: Your social worker will sit down with you, your spouse and everyone else you live with to learn a little more about each of you.

Background Clearances – Background checks are required from you, your spouse and every member of your home to ensure that you are capable of providing a safe and stable home for a child.

*This step is determined on a case-by-case basis.

For Surrogates:

If you meet all the requirements to become a surrogate, then you can move toward the screening process for a Baltimore surrogacy. This will include:

  • An in-home assessment and background checks
  • A surrogate social and medical history form
  • A physical and psychological evaluation

Step 4: Find a match.

Now comes the exciting part. Once you’ve completed your screening, it will be time to start looking for a potential match.

If you’ve already found the right intended parent or surrogate for your journey, then you’ll likely only need to reach out to a Baltimore attorney like Jennifer or Catelyn who is familiar with assisted reproductive technology law. On the other hand, if you haven’t started your search yet, here’s how to find a match:

One option is to search for, screen and select a Baltimore surrogacy match on your own through an independent surrogacy journey (without an agency or matching program). The other is to work with a matching program (often called a “surrogacy agency”) that screens everyone on your behalf and helps you connect with someone who fits what you’re looking for in an ideal surrogacy match.

Regardless of how you find your match, we’ll be ready to help you remain legally protected and to guide you through the legal process of surrogacy in Baltimore. Once you’ve found your match, you’ll move on to the next step of creating your surrogacy contract.

Step 5: Create your contract.

Once you and your match have decided to move forward together, you’ll need to make it official by drafting a legal contract. In this step, the intended parents and surrogate will each have their own respective Baltimore attorney to work with. This way, both parties can ensure that their legal rights are being protected and represented.

The two attorneys will then work together to make sure that everyone is happy with the terms that are included. Once everyone agrees, and the two lawyers have had a chance to review and approve it, the contracts will be signed and the next stage of the surrogacy process in Baltimore will begin.

If you need help finding a second Baltimore surrogacy attorney you can trust, we’re happy to refer you to local representation. Together with this second attorney, Jennifer or Catelyn will safely navigate you through the legalities of surrogacy in Baltimore.

Step 6: Complete the medical process.

Once the Baltimore surrogacy contract has been signed and executed, it’s time to start the exciting process of embryo transfer. This step will be handled by an already agreed-upon fertility clinic.

At this stage, the surrogate will begin taking medication to prepare for the embryo transfer procedure. If the intended parents don’t already have frozen embryos that they’ll be using, the intended mother or egg donor will be given medication to help her develop eggs and will then undergo an egg retrieval process. Once that’s done, the eggs will be fertilized in the laboratory of your fertility clinic to create an embryo, which is then transferred to the surrogate. After a healthy pregnancy has been confirmed, and a heartbeat is heard, the base compensation of monthly payments will begin.

All of these details will have been carefully documented in the Baltimore surrogacy contract that we help you create.

Step 7: Welcome the baby.

After a long and emotional surrogacy process in Baltimore, the birth of the baby is one of the most exciting experiences for intended parents and surrogates alike. Most of the time, the intended parents will be there to experience this incredible moment with the surrogate at the hospital.

After the baby is born and the surrogate is ready to be discharged, everyone can head home. Depending on your situation, you might decide to continue your relationship with one another long after the surrogacy process is over.

The opportunity to give someone else the gift of a child and the ability to build your family through surrogacy in Baltimore is an incredible experience. No matter who you are, surrogacy can be an incredibly rewarding and fulfilling experience that you will treasure for a lifetime.  Jennifer and Catelyn are proud to help families in such a special way.

 

Why You Need a Baltimore Surrogacy Attorney

The process of starting your Baltimore surrogacy journey, whether as a gestational carrier or an intended parent, should not be completed without the help of an experienced Baltimore surrogacy attorney. Not only do surrogacy laws vary widely from state to state, but starting this process without a lawyer’s professional guidance can have severe legal consequences in the long run.

Baltimore surrogacy lawyers are experienced in navigating local surrogacy laws. Without an experienced lawyer like Catelyn or Jennifer, it will be very difficult to handle on your own. To learn more about how to start the process, please schedule a consultation now to get more information.

“I believe in working with each of my clients—in support of their family dynamic—to make the dreams of parenthood a reality. Whether you are single or married; or gay; a step-parent, a surrogate or intended parent or a child of adoption, it is my mission to serve as your advocate. With a dedication to the ethical and sensitive nature of each situation, I will help you understand the laws within Maryland or Washington, DC for adoption or surrogacy, and pledge to be your partner throughout the journey.” - Jennifer Fairfax