Altruistic surrogacy is a surrogacy process in which the surrogate does not receive any additional compensation beyond her medical and pregnancy expenses.
While altruistic surrogacies are rare, they are possible for those considering becoming a surrogate.
Before you decide that altruistic surrogacy is right for you, it’s vital to consider all the pros and cons of the process. If you want to discuss the common aspects of the altruistic surrogacy process with a surrogacy professional, you can contact us today to learn more. But, if you want to learn the basics of altruistic surrogacy before talking to a specialist, continue reading.
What is Altruistic Surrogacy?
In general, the altruistic surrogacy definition is any surrogacy process where the surrogate does not get a base compensation.
The surrogate mother will still:
- Receive necessary surrogacy services for free
- Have her medical and pregnancy expenses covered by the intended parents
But, with altruistic gestational surrogacy, she waives her right to base compensation for her services.
Similar to commercial surrogacy, the specifics of an altruistic surrogacy are detailed in a surrogacy legal contract — even though there are no financial details to negotiate regarding compensation.
Altruistic surrogacy is often less expensive for intended parents than commercial surrogacy, but many of the same professionals and services are needed to complete the altruistic surrogacy process successfully. In fact, there’s not a lot of difference between altruistic and commercial surrogacy when it comes to anything other than compensation.
Why Do People Complete an Altruistic Surrogacy?
As a woman considering becoming a surrogate, you may wonder why someone would choose to waive their right to surrogate base compensation.
The surrogates and intended parents who complete an altruistic surrogacy often know each other before starting the surrogacy process. They may be family or friends, and the woman who chooses to become a surrogate may have seen the intended parents go through years of trying to grow their family.
To help them reach their goals and to ease the financial burden of the surrogacy process, a prospective surrogate may offer to complete an altruistic surrogacy with them. This is why many altruistic surrogacies are also identified surrogacies.
Altruistic vs. Commercial Surrogacy
If you are considering being part of an altruistic surrogacy, consider the pros and cons associated with this process:
- Altruistic gestational surrogacy is generally less expensive for intended parents than commercial surrogacy, especially if the surrogate and intended parents find each other before hiring a surrogacy agency. But, remember that no matter which surrogacy process you pursue, it will always be free to you as a prospective surrogate.
- Altruistic surrogacy is legal in many U.S. states and other countries and is an option for surrogates and intended parents who live in areas where commercial surrogacy is illegal.
- If an altruistic surrogacy is also an identified surrogacy, there will be an existing level of trust between a surrogate and her intended parents.
- Because most altruistic surrogacies occur between friends or family members, choosing altruistic surrogacy without already having a match can make the matching process more difficult.
- If you decide to be a surrogate in an altruistic gestational surrogacy, you may feel underappreciated as you experience more of the responsibilities of the surrogacy process. First-time surrogates don’t know what to expect. And, if you enter an altruistic surrogacy for your first experience, you may not be prepared for all the physical and emotional demands of the surrogacy process — and just how vital base compensation may be to you.
- Your relationship with the intended parents may suffer if you complete an altruistic surrogacy. They may be hesitant to make specific requests beyond the basics because you are not compensated, and you may also feel like you can’t request certain things you may need.
It’s important to note that many surrogacy professionals advise that a prospective surrogate requires at least a small base compensation to avoid feelings of vulnerability and fears of being taken advantage of down the line. Even a small compensation package can create a more balanced relationship between a surrogate and the intended parents.
Next Steps Toward Altruistic Surrogacy
An altruistic surrogacy, like any surrogacy, is a significant commitment, and it may not be the right path for every woman interested in being a surrogate.
Under the right circumstances, though, it can be a positive and rewarding experience for both surrogates and intended parents. All prospective surrogates should consider the potential complications of the altruistic surrogacy process before starting.
Whether you are considering a commercial or an altruistic surrogacy, it’s important to speak with an experienced surrogacy professional to learn more about each process and to determine which one is right for you. You can get started by contacting us today.