Requirements for Becoming a Surrogate
You’re thinking about becoming a surrogate- that’s awesome! You are probably wondering whether you will be eligible. Many eligibility criteria are discussed and explained here, but you should always reach out to Pearl Surrogacy directly if you have specific questions about your circumstances.
- Where do you live? Surrogacy is regulated state by state. Pearl Surrogacy only works with surrogates who live in states where surrogacy contracts are enforceable. There are some states where compensated surrogacy is not permitted and we cannot work with surrogates that live in those states.
- How old are you? Pearl Surrogacy only works with surrogates who are at least 21 and not older than 42.
- Have you had at least one prior, uncomplicated pregnancy and delivery? Pearl Surrogacy surrogates must have had at least one prior pregnancy and delivery without complications. Additionally, we do not work with surrogates who have had more than 5 deliveries or who have had more than 2 prior C-sections because they have a greater risk of complications.
- Were all of your prior deliveries full term? For a singleton pregnancy, “full term” means at least 37 weeks gestation at the time of delivery. Pearl Surrogacy requires that all of their surrogates’ prior deliveries have been full term. If you had a multiple pregnancy, give us a call or send us an email to talk more about what we consider “full term” for you.
- What is your BMI? While we don’t have a specific weight limit, we do have a BMI limit of 33. BMI is a calculation based on your height and weight. If your BMI is close to 33, we are happy to start the eligibility review process with you while you work on weight loss.
- Do you smoke or have you ever smoked? Pearl Surrogacy does not work with surrogates that are current smokers. You may be eligible if you are a former smoker. Give us a call or send us an email so we can talk more about how long it has been since you smoked and how much you used to smoke.
- What form of birth control do you use currently? If you had a tubal ligation, we will need to know more about what type of procedure was done. Usually, tubal ligation is not a problem. But there are certain procedure types that require us to get a more thorough evaluation of your uterus before we know whether you are eligible. If you are using the Depo-Provera injection, you will need to stop getting injections and get a normal period again before beginning medical eligibility review. If you are using an IUD or Nexplanon, it will need to be removed before beginning medical eligibility review. Birth control pills are not a problem.
- How long has it been since your last delivery? Pearl Surrogacy surrogates cannot attempt a surrogate pregnancy until their baby is about 1 year old. We are happy to start the eligibility review process with you when your baby is about 6 months old so that you are ready to attempt pregnancy when they reach 1 year. Additionally, we do not work with surrogates whose most recent delivery is 10 or more years ago.
- Are you breastfeeding? We cannot work with you as a surrogate until your baby is weaned and you have normal periods again, even if your baby is more than 1 year old. We are happy to start the eligibility review process and plan for matching and transfer with your anticipated schedule for weaning your baby.
- Do you or your children receive public benefits, particularly state-provided medical insurance? We do not work with surrogates who have state-provided medical insurance for themselves or their children because the compensation that you would receive as a surrogate would likely make you and your children ineligible for insurance benefits and we do not want you or your children losing these benefits because you were a surrogate.
- Do you have any medical concerns that are made worse by pregnancy? Some medical conditions are made worse by pregnancy or require you to take medications that may not be safe in pregnancy. We use a much higher standard in determining “safety” for a surrogate pregnancy than your doctor uses for your own pregnancy. Some examples of medical conditions that may make you ineligible to be a surrogate are:
- Use of psychiatric medications (it doesn’t matter whether they are used for a psychiatric diagnosis or not)
- Gastric bypass surgery
- Heart condition
- Prior blood clotting issues
- Severe migraines treated regularly with prescription medications
- Regular use of prescription medication that has not been established to be safe in pregnancy
- History of cancer
Call or email us if you have a specific question about your medical history and whether it would impact your eligibility to be a surrogate.
- What pregnancy or delivery complications would prevent me from being a surrogate? This is the trickiest question! It always depends on your individual circumstances and we are happy to talk with you about your situation and review your records to better evaluate the nature of your complication. There are some complications that will almost always disqualify you from being a surrogacy though:
- Delivery of a singleton before 37 weeks
- Pre-term labor
- Post-partum depression
- Gestational diabetes
- Placental abruption
- Repeated miscarriage
- Uterine abnormality (endometriosis, adenyomyosis, fibroids, etc)
Call or email us if you have a specific question about complications you experienced in a prior pregnancy or delivery.