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Surrogacy in Westchester County
Surrogacy is an option for individuals or couples when first-line fertility treatments have not been successful. Women may be candidates for surrogacy if they have abnormalities of the uterus, recurrent miscarriages, or if carrying a child would pose great health complications to them. Gay couples may also choose surrogacy as a way to have a biological connection to the child.
There are two different types of surrogacy. The first is called traditional surrogacy. In traditional surrogacy, the surrogate is inseminated with sperm, which fertilizes her own eggs. This makes the surrogate a biological relation to the child. The second kind of surrogacy is called gestational surrogacy. Many couples prefer gestational surrogacy, since the surrogate is implanted with an embryo to conceive. This embryo is not comprised of her own eggs, so the surrogate will not be genetically related to the child.
Surrogacy Laws in New York
Unlike many states, New York has a clear stance on the legality of surrogacy agreements. According to New York law, all surrogacy agreements are considered void and unenforceable.
The law on surrogacy agreements, called “surrogacy parenting contracts,” is found under Article 8 of New York Domestic Relation Law. This law states that no money can be exchanged in surrogacy agreements, except for medical and hospital expenses.
Not only are surrogacy agreements void in New York, but they are also punishable by fines. Those involved in surrogacy agreements, such as the intended parents, can face fines of up to $500, while those responsible for arranging the surrogacy agreement can face fines up to $10,000.
While New York renders surrogacy agreements void and unenforceable, the state does recognize the parental rights of intended parents in a surrogacy situation. In the 1994 custody case McDonald v. McDonald, the New York Appellate Court ruled that a woman who gave birth to twins via an egg donor and her husband’s sperm could still be considered the children’s legal mother.
Westchester County Surrogacy Agencies
Surrogacy agencies match up intended parents with surrogates. Because there are no laws governing the operation of surrogacy agencies, it is important to do your research. Ask questions like how long the surrogacy agency has been in operation, what psychological screenings are in place, and what requirements are in place for the surrogates.
The following surrogacy agencies work with Westchester County intended parents:
- Growing Generations
- Northeast Assisted Fertility Group
For intended parents who would prefer to work with a fertility clinic for their surrogacy needs, there are two fertility clinics in Westchester County that work with surrogates.