When a family would like to have a child, there are a few ways that they can pursue that dream without getting pregnant themselves. There are many reasons that a person or a couple may not be able to conceive or carry a child. One way to have a child without conceiving and carrying them is through surrogacy, a situation in which an embryo is intentionally planted and carried in a woman’s uterus for the purpose of the baby being adopted by a specific person or couple after the birth.
Surrogacy is legal in Kansas, and the surrogacy process consists of two parts. The first part of the surrogacy process begins even before the surrogate pregnancy, with a surrogate contract. A surrogacy contract lays out each party’s responsibilities and expectations. Typical surrogacy contracts detail who the parties are and what each of their legal relationships with the child will be, financial details associated with prenatal care, labor and delivery expenses, and compensation if that is part of the intended agreement, and other responsibilities like genetic testing, psychological screening, and counseling.
As you can see, a surrogacy contract is not something that people should take lightly, nor is it something that they should attempt without the guidance of attorneys. When all of the parties have reached an agreement, and they have signed the surrogacy contract, the surrogate pregnancy can then be established and carried out according to its terms.
The second stage of the surrogacy process in Kansas is adoption or determination of parentage. This step can happen either before or after the baby is born, and the exact steps of the process are determined by what type of surrogacy occurred. For example, many people choose gestational surrogacy and use their own or a donor’s genetic material to create an embryo that is genetically unrelated to the surrogate mother who carries the child. Sometimes, both parents contribute genetic material and parentage proceedings, rather than adoption proceedings complete the legal determination of parental rights. If one or more donors contribute genetic material to the embryo, the intended parents can establish their legal rights to the child through a stepparent adoption. If the surrogacy is a traditional surrogacy, where the surrogate mother also acts as an egg donor, she will relinquish her parental rights to the child, thus making the child available for stepparent adoption by the unrelated intended parent or parents.
Surrogacy can help individuals or couples to fulfill their dreams of having children. Surrogacy is different from traditional adoption, yet it is similar in that it has a permanent impact on the lives of everyone involved. Therefore, surrogate pregnancies and adoptions must be handled with the utmost of care. A Kansas Adoption Attorney can help you understand the surrogacy process and guide you through the steps of the surrogacy process to its completion. If you have questions about surrogacy, Kansas Adoption Attorney Thomas McDowell may be able to assist you. Please call our office today, at (316) 633-4322 to schedule an initial consultation.