We are on number 3 and 4 with our 14 Mistakes to Avoid For Women Considering Becoming Surrogate Mothers or Gestational Carriers. These two go together very well and end up to be one of the more common mistakes. All in the name of ‘saving money’!
Mistake #3 and #4-Using an ‘old’ or past contract and Not having your own legal representation when reviewing your surrogacy contract.
Why you should have a new contract drawn up and insist that you have your own attorney: If you have your old contract then that tells me you have been a surrogate in the past or at least were in a surrogacy arrangement. It’s great that you like and feel comfortable with what you have agreed upon in your old contract however circumstances have changed! You have new Intended Parents. They may reside in another state, they certainly have different contact information and they have different needs. People use old contracts to save money but most times it just doesn’t work out that way! More money is spent when one finds out that not all of the IP’s wishes are covered or something you might need could have been overlooked in the rush to have something to sign and get ready for that all important (and expensive) transfer. This goes hand in hand with GET AN ATTORNEY! One for each party involved. Someone who KNOWS reproductive law. (Not your brother-in-law who is a divorce attorney or their cousin who is a death row lawyer!)
If you liked your old contract so much, supply a copy to your new attorney and he or she can add in your wishes/requirements and all that will then be explained to your new Intended Parents by their OWN lawyer! This is a must to ensure that everyone is on the same page. A surrogate must have their own representation to avoid conflict of interest. Trust me, the cost to your IP’s for you to have your own attorney is much less then if YOU have to hire your own attorney because of a dispute in the contract after you are pregnant!