Frequently Asked Questions
A Gestational Surrogate has no genetic link to the child/ren she is carrying; rather, the egg is provided either by the Intended Mother or an Egg Donor. A Traditional Surrogate is genetically related to the child she is carrying, she is both the Egg Donor and the Surrogate. The Traditional Surrogate is inseminated with the Father’s or Donor’s sperm monthly at ovulation until pregnancy occurs. Traditional Surrogacy is an unsettled area of the law and a Traditional Surrogacy Agreement, in whole or in part, may be declared void as against public policy by the courts and/or legislature, or held unenforceable, in whole or in part, by a court of law. Traditional Surrogates are much harder to recruit, and you will have to be more flexible and open in your selection criteria if you are deciding on a Traditional Surrogate. Unlike choosing an Egg Donor and a Gestational Surrogate, you may not get everything you are looking for in a Traditional Surrogate.
Unfortunately, there are situations where a Surrogate or Egg Donor changes her mind before contracts are signed. (Although due to our intense screening process we have reduced the chances of this occurring. If this happens to you, Simple Surrogacy will re-match you immediately at no additional charge.
The level of interaction between the Surrogate and Intended Parents is a personal preference between the parties. You will need to decide how much interaction you are comfortable with, and also consider how much interaction the other parties to the surrogacy expect. Our Executive Program Director, Stephanie Scott will discuss your your hopes and expectations regarding contact before you are matched with a Surrogate or Egg Donor in our program. We pride ourselves on making the best match possible for all parties. Some Intended Parents like high levels of interaction; i.e., regular updates via e-mail and/or phone, and the expectation to attend as many of the doctor appointments as possible. It is highly important to some Intended Parents to be “included” in the pregnancy. Similarly, some Surrogates also desire a close relationship with their IP’s and may be disappointed if the Intended Parent’s did not maintain regular contact with them throughout the pregnancy and beyond. Many Surrogates and Intended Parent’s hope to have a life-long friendship even after the birth, and some correspond throughout the life of the child. A percentage of Intended Parents and Surrogates commit to a fairly low level of contact such as occasional updates, pictures, and/or phone calls – but do not necessarily have a close relationship. This type of Surrogacy is more of a “business arrangement.” Some Intended Parents may not be able to (or may choose not to) attend doctor appointments and may not see the Surrogate very often (or at all) throughout the pregnancy. A lot of Surrogates may also prefer this type of relationship because they may already have their hands full in their own lives, and may not desire an overly close relationship with their Intended Parents. Before entering into contract together, it is important that the IP’s and Surrogate decide what level of contact they prefer before they are matched.
Simple Surrogacy collects its fee up front when you sign your retainer agreement. We offer different options to payment, detailed in our retainer agreement. We will work with you as long as necessary to ensure that your dreams of becoming a parent are realized. We do not put a time frame on our matching process, but most IP’s are matched rather quickly. After you have been matched with your Surrogate, you will be given the contact information of your Surrogate so you can contact each other freely, and the IP’s and Surrogate will be matched to attorneys and physicians to continue the process. We will collect the deposits for your escrow throughout the course of your surrogacy arrangement and only after you have been matched with a Surrogate or Egg Donor in our Program and the legal contracts between all parties are completed and signed.
Some states are hostile to Surrogacy. Others are not. As long as your Surrogate resides in a Surrogate friendly state, your Birth Order, termination of rights or third party adoption can take place within its jurisdiction, and there is no disputing your parental rights to the child. We will advise you of the state laws regarding surrogacy arrangements before matching you with a surrogate through our program.
Most Intended Parents leave our program with a child or children. In the few cases that a client has left our program without a child, it has been because they were not able to become pregnant using their own genetic material and decided not to use donor eggs or sperm to achieve their pregnancy, because they had exhausted the number of attempts for IUIs or IVF in their contracts, and/or the had exhausted the funds set aside to attempt another cycle. Simple Surrogacy is committed to helping it’s clients become parents, and If you have gone through the agreed-upon amount of transfers with your Surrogate, and she does not become pregnant (and you decide you would like to try again with someone else) we will match you with another Surrogate for only a small additional charge. Although Reproductive medicine is not an exact science, we at Simple Surrogacy are committed to helping you become parents.
Our Surrogates and Egg Donors go through a thorough screening and vetting process. To apply to be in our program, they must fill out a lengthy application including a detailed medical, psychological, personality, and educational and pregnancy history. After we receive their application, our Program Director reviews it and obtains records from their previous pregnancies. Surrogates undergo a detailed background and criminal check with 7 year address verification, which includes our Investigative Service going into courthouses and personally searching records where applicable. Surrogates and Egg Donors are also medically screened by your chosen clinic after you decide to match with them.
Who coordinates our arrangements once we are matched? How much ongoing counseling and coordinating does the agency offer throughout the arrangement?
Many agencies match their Intended Parents and then do not provide follow-up guidance and counseling. As an agency operated by individuals who have first-hand knowledge of the surrogacy process, both as Intended Parents, Surrogates and Egg Donors, we can provide the guidance to see our clients through the entire Surrogacy Process. All agency owners are available to every client, and we offer continued support to our Surrogates and Egg Donors through our counselors and coordinators. Clients and Surrogates will have an assigned coordinator to help guide them through the surrogacy process and offer support. This eliminates much of the stress that can be sometimes associated with the Surrogacy process.
Many of our clients ask us how we can offer much lower rates for our services than comparable East- and West- coast agencies. The answer lies in our Texas Advantage. As an agency located in Texas, we have the benefit of operating in a state with no State income tax, unlike comparable agencies that must pay income tax to their state on their earnings. That allows us to cut 10% off their costs right off the top.
In addition, the cost of living in Texas is 10-15% lower in Texas, versus California, or states back east such as Massachusetts, New York and Florida. What that means for us is lower overhead and expenses, so we can pass that savings onto our clients. That is why so many companies relocate to advantageous cost-of-living states like Texas.
We have also streamlined the surrogacy matching process, allowing us to pass the cost savings onto you. We offer professionally screened and background checked Surrogates, but we allow their medical screening to be done only once, by your selected clinic. That saves you the cost of paying for an additional medical screening, and makes sure your individual clinic accepts your selected Surrogate. That saves you an additional $1,000-$3,000, depending on clinic.
Are the estimated totals for my surrogacy journey accurate? Are there any hidden costs that you have not explained?
Simple Surrogacy takes the expenses that each Intended Parent in our program pays throughout their surrogacy journey and we add them all up to get an average estimate for surrogacy for the previous fiscal year. This cost estimate includes agency fee, medical, legal, surrogate compensation, incidentals, screening for all parties, and travel expenses for your Surrogate. While these are estimates only, they are based on our Intended Parent’s experience and are intended to inform you as to what to expect as far as the average cost range. Many agencies provide inaccurate or incomplete cost estimates or tack on additional fees for every process. We encourage you to add up their various fees and compare that with what we include in our all- inclusive fee. Please visit our Texas Advantage page to see how we compare with East and West Coast agencies, and to understand how we can offer these prices to our clients.
YES. At Simple Surrogacy, all escrow funds are maintained in segregated federally insured bank accounts. Escrow accounts are managed by a division of Simple Surrogacy, LLC; Simple Surrogacy Escrow, and every employee who works in our escrow department is background checked and criminally screened.
No. Simple Surrogacy and its owners have no predecessor businesses that have ever filed bankruptcy.
Simple Surrogacy has never been sued.
We offer all prospective clients references to former clients who have utilized our program. Our referral network consists of some of the most respected doctors, attorneys and psychologists in the surrogacy field. We are highly committed to helping our clients achieve success.
Founded in 2002, Simple Surrogacy is one of the most experienced agencies in the U.S. and has a proven track record of success. We can provide references from former satisfied Intended Parents, Surrogates and Egg Donors, as well as references from some of the top IVF clinics in the country.
What are the advantages of using Simple Surrogacy instead of my clinic’s in-house program, or finding my own surrogate?
You have a few options when you are deciding on surrogacy. Some intended parents try to create their own surrogacy arrangement by seeking out a surrogate mother and personally coordinating all the travel, medical, financial, and legal details. This is very difficult to do if you do not have the experience with the respective laws, medical processes and typical occurrences that happen in a surrogacy. In this scenario, the Intended Parents are coping with the emotional aspects of the surrogacy process, while trying to manage medical coordination, and trying to make sure your contract is legal and your surrogate is legitimate, screened and has your best interests at heart. Others choose their fertility doctor’s in-house program, if one is available.
Alternatively, working with a surrogacy agency such as Simple Surrogacy, LLC, will result in the least amount of stress, the greatest amount of emotional and psychological support, access to the most thoroughly-screened surrogate mothers, and assistance with financial and legal agreements.
First and foremost, you want to find the best surrogate mother for your individual situation. Simple Surrogacy screens surrogate mother candidates for medical and psychological issues, reviews their entire medical and pregnancy history, and conducts intensive background checks. With your doctor’s in-house program or an independent arrangement, you are not guaranteed access to the most eligible candidates. A surrogacy agency often has a more formalized and thorough screening process.