If you’re becoming or using a surrogate mother, Los Angeles is a perfect spot to begin your journey. There are a lot of misconceptions about how surrogacy works, whether it happens in Los Angeles or elsewhere. Understanding the surrogate process will make it easy to feel confident about your choices.
Not every woman is cut out to become a surrogate mother. Los Angeles is home to many women, but very few will have the commitment necessary to be a gestational surrogate for intended parents. The first step is for a woman to apply to become a surrogate. She is then interviewed regarding her medical history and background. She will also arrange for her medical records to be transferred to the surrogacy agency. Once she is determined to be eligible to be matched, her profile will be made available for intended parents to review. When intended parents are interested in using the woman as their surrogate, each party evaluates each other to see if they are a good match. If they are a good match, physical and mental screening will be ordered for the surrogate.
Should the surrogate not be disqualified during the physical and mental screening, and both parties wish to move forward, the surrogate agreement is drawn up for the intended parents and the surrogate mother. Los Angeles is host to a number of lawyers who are well versed in the intricacies of surrogacy agreements. The surrogate agreement specifies the terms of payment for the surrogate, medical insurance coverage, stipulations regarding potential pregnancy complications, and legal rights to the child. Once all parties agree to the surrogacy agreement, it is finalized and the medical treatment can begin.
Fertility treatments are performed on the intended parents and the surrogate mother. Los Angeles has a large number of fertility clinics available to provide these treatments, called In Vitro Fertilization. The intended parents’ sperm and egg (or that of a donor’s) will be combined to create embryos. These embryos are inserted into the surrogate mother’s uterus in a procedure called an embryo transfer. After the embryo transfer is performed, the fertility doctor will be able to determine if the surrogate became pregnant within about 10 days. Should the surrogate not be pregnant after the procedure, another embryo transfer could take place the following month, provided that there are enough embryos available to transfer. If there are not enough embryos available to transfer into the surrogate, the intended parents will have to undergo another round of In Vitro Fertilization to obtain additional sperm and eggs. This would likely cause a delay of another month.
Eventually, a pregnancy should occur in the surrogate mother. Los Angeles has a lot of highly qualified obstetricians available to care for her and the baby during the pregnancy. The fertility doctor will monitor the pregnancy for the first trimester, at which point her care will be transferred to an obstetrician of the intended parent’s choosing. The surrogate will usually take pre-natal vitamins in addition to other medications to assist her pregnancy. Once the baby is delivered, the intended parents’ names will be placed on the baby’s birth certificate and the surrogate mother will receive the balance of her payment according to the surrogacy contract.