Independent vs. Agency Journeys: You Don't Know What You Don't Know

There are many decisions to be made when embarking on a surrogacy journey. One of the most important decisions is whether to pursue an independent or agency surrogacy journey. An independent journey is one where the surrogate and intended parents work together directly, without the assistance of a surrogacy agency. An agency journey is one where the surrogate and intended parents rely on the guidance and support of a surrogacy agency.

This decision should not be taken lightly and requires thoughtful consideration as there are benefits and drawbacks to both options. Let’s take a look at the pros and cons of each option, so you can make the best decision for your unique situation.

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Advantages of an Independent Surrogacy Journey: An independent surrogacy journey offers several advantages, including increased control over overall planning. Intended parents and surrogates have the ability to customize every aspect of their surrogacy journey by making all arrangements themselves—from start to finish—which allows them to create a unique experience tailored specifically for them and their surrogate. However, this also means that all parties must dedicate many hours of research to finding reputable providers such as fertility clinics, escrow managers, medical insurance plans and attorneys (just to name a few!) This places a lot of pressure on all parties to get each step of the journey right, to be sure everyone is protected and well cared for during the journey. Not an easy task.

Advantages of an Agency Surrogacy Journey: Working with a reputable surrogacy agency provides the surrogate and intended parents with support throughout the entire surrogacy process from start to finish. Agencies have access to experienced professionals who are knowledgeable about all aspects of the surrogacy journey—from legal, to insurance, to medical care providers and donor matching services—which can save time and money in the long run. With an agency, you don’t have to spend time researching or managing these items yourself. One of the most critical benefits to working with an agency for your surrogacy journey is that a reputable agency will conduct extensive due diligence and screening of all parties, including criminal background checks, third party escrow management and proper medical clearances and insurance coverage, to be sure the journey is as safe as possible. Safety of all parties cannot be underestimated when considering a surrogacy journey.

At Surrogacy Mentor, our only goal is to help surrogates match with reputable surrogacy agencies, at zero cost to the surrogate. We are experienced surrogates (who have personally experienced both independent and agency journeys) and seasoned industry professionals with the expertise and relationships to help you have the best start to your surrogacy journey.