One of the common paths of life for people is to meet their significant other, marry, settle down, have children, and raise a family all the while creating happy memories to look back on as you all grow together. For some, having children isn’t so easy, or may it may be downright impossible to do so. Infertility in either the man, woman, or the inability to conceive a child in a same-sex union, can quickly become an emotional burden – sometimes resulting in depression, divorce, or both. Fertility tests and procedures can also rack up expensive medical bills and by the end of it, the couple may be no closer than when they began – but significantly in debt. One option that isn’t as much of a financial burden is to hire a surrogate.
Unlike some other states, surrogacy is completely legal in Oregon which often draws out of state couples in to learn more and begin the process. For women who decide to become surrogates, it is a relief to know that there are no laws against their decision and that there are no laws restricting them for being compensated for their efforts; as many mothers will tell you, daily tasks become a bit more difficult when pregnant, especially later on in the process, and having financial compensation to help them during that time is a major benefit. In order to be a surrogate, you need to meet a few requirements, including:
- Age: Per Oregon law, you need to be between 21 and 40 years old. Women outside this age range are at a higher risk of health complications to themselves and to the child-to-be.
- Good health: Some examples include a healthy weight, non-smoking, and have successfully given birth at least once prior.
- Good mental health: you will likely need to take a screening to determine that you are of sound mind to continue with becoming a surrogate.
- US status: You must be an Oregon resident and will be subject to a background test.
Let’s say you want to go through with surrogacy, regardless if you are the couple involved or the surrogate. One of the most important things you can do is to hire an expertly trained Beaverton family law attorney to draw up legal contracts and negotiate with the other side’s attorney to ensure that everyone understands the burdens, risks, and expectations of the process. Before proceeding and the surrogate becoming pregnant, it is important to hammer out all details to come to a mutual understanding of which steps should be taken should any unforeseen circumstances or complications arise.
If you are considering becoming a surrogate, or are a couple who would like to work with / hire a surrogate to bring a child into this world, we’re here to help you through the sensitive and confusing prospect. Contact our offices today to speak with one of our Beaverton family law attorneys and receive more information about surrogacy, what to expect in negotiations, and how the next 9 months of your lives will play out if all parties agree to the terms. We here at Helzer & Cromar LLP are ready and willing to help you plan out your next steps.