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Pros and Cons to Independent Surrogacy Matching

Aug 21, 2008
Every surrogate mother and intended parent is faced with the prospect of how they are going to find a potential match to work with during a surrogacy. There are generally two ways to find a match: through a surrogacy agency or finding a match independently.

There is no rule stating that a surrogate mother or intended parent needs to work with a surrogacy agency. They are free to find a match on their own through local connections or via an online message board. Here are some of the pros and cons to finding an independent match.

Pro: Independent matching is free.
The best part about an independent surrogacy arrangement is that it does not cost anything. Surrogacy agencies are quite expensive. Many intended parents cannot afford the high fees in addition to all the other expenses of surrogacy.

Pro: Traditional surrogates can be found via independent surrogacy matching.
Many agencies will not work with traditional surrogate mothers. In order to match these traditional surrogates with intended parents, many find independent surrogacy matching to be a much better option.

Pro: There are no strict rules for independent matching.
Some agencies have strict rules regarding weight and other issues. If these issues do not matter to a set of intended parents and their clinic, they can find a match on their own.

Pro: A surrogate and her intended parents can negotiate compensation.
Many times, agencies have the fees that they "allow" a surrogate to receive as compensation set in stone. If a surrogate mother wants a higher fee, or a set of intended parents wants a lower fee, they are unable to negotiate this via some agencies. An independent surrogacy match allows both parties to negotiate a different amount.

Con: All appointments and travel will need to be arranged.
One of the main benefits to an agency is their experience. They arrange travel and various appointments for their clients, which helps those inexperienced with surrogacy. Those matching independently will need to figure this all out on their own.

Con: There is no escrow agent.
An escrow agent acts as a third party between the surrogate mother and the intended parents and handles all the money in a surrogacy arrangement. Most agencies provide this service. Without an agency, the surrogate and intended parents will need to find a separate escrow agent.

Con: Background checks are not automatically provided.
Most agencies do background checks on either or both the surrogate mother, her partner, and the intended parents. Without this convenience, the parties will need to do this on their own, or choose to go without.

Each surrogacy journey is different and each set of intended parents and surrogate mothers needs to decide for themselves if it is better in their situation to work with an agency or to match independently. There is no right or wrong way to do it.
About the Author
Rayven Perkins is an author and two-time surrogate mother. To find out more information on surrogacy and more on the pros and cons of independent surrogacy arrangements, please see her sitePros and Cons of Surrogacy Agencies
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