If you’re considering becoming a surrogate, you’re considering a major life change that could affect your health and your future. It’s a selfless, kind act, but that doesn’t mean you should have to give up your rights, either.
Surrogate rights are unique because it’s your health and body on the line during a pregnancy. Because of this, it’s important to understand your rights so you can get real justice for your case if your health, safety, or finances are negatively impacted by the surrogate process.
Your Rights as a Surrogate
When you choose to carry a child for an expecting couple, you’re more than just a carrier for that child. You’re taking on a major responsibility and are expected to maintain your own body a certain way. Because there are so many expectations on you as a surrogate, it’s important to understand your rights, as well.
For example, you have a right to be completely informed about your health and to be given any and all treatment you need. That includes psychological help, as carrying a child can be a mentally taxing situation. It’s your body, after all, and it should be your decision on how you tend to your health.
You should also receive all compensation agreed to for carrying the child. If the expectant couple or the surrogacy agency tries to avoid paying you for your time as a surrogate, you have legal grounds to seek justice and compensation.
Parental Rights for Surrogates
When it comes to surrogacy, there may be the issue of parenthood. You’re carrying the child, so you may be considering your rights to the child. For example, what happens if you decide to keep the child?
In most cases, you don’t have the option to make that decision. Surrogates are expected to give up the child, and in most cases, the child isn’t genetically related to you. Except in cases of traditional surrogacy, where your own egg is used, an egg is implanted from the parent who’s unable to conceive. While traditional surrogacy is still an option in some locations, it’s rare in part because of the legal complications.
If you think you may be interested in keeping the child, you may need to consider not becoming a surrogate. Simply understanding your rights makes a difference, but if you may want to keep the child, consider the fact that you may not have the chance.
Understand Your Rights Before Surrogacy
When you’re considering surrogacy, you’re considering a complex, selfless act. However, that doesn’t mean you don’t deserve justice and rights as a surrogate. When you’re researching how to become a surrogate, it’s just as important to consider how you should be treated, too.
If you’re considering becoming a surrogate, it’s important to understand the contract for your situation, not just your requirements. If needed, talk to your lawyer, too–they should be able to talk you through the process, so you have a chance to hear about your rights in plain, simple language. It’s easy to lose sight of the rights you deserve, so ask questions about your rights now, not later.