Muskaan community to become parents when they may not

Muskaan Sulaiman

Mr. Aldunate

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January 15 2018                                                         

Glass Door
To  Surrogacy

There are
many factors to consider before pursuing surrogacy, as the positives far
outweigh the negatives and it is a rewarding experience that deeply enriches
the lives of everyone it touches.

            Surrogacy
can be a physically and emotionally demanding experience, and it takes a
special person to be a surrogate for another family. However, the women chosen
for surrogacy agrees that seeing a complete family at the end of their journey
is the ultimate reward that makes it all. Here are just a few surrogacy
benefits that intended parents enjoy. Surrogacy allows infertile couples, single people and members of
the LGBT community to become parents when they may not be able
to have children. Surrogacy gives hopeful parents the opportunity to raise a
child from birth. Surrogacy gives intended parents more control and peace of
mind throughout the pregnancy than they usually have with fertility treatments
or adoption. While surrogacy is not without its challenges for intended parents.
Many surrogacy agencies encourage post-birth contact between the surrogate and
the family. This continued relationship allows for an incredibly unique and
powerful experience for everyone involved. Surrogacy is often a
better option than other fertility treatments. Surrogacy has a higher success rate
than other fertility treatments, and with continued
improvement of IVF procedures, surrogacy is only getting more
successful.  

            Unfortunately
there are some obstacles for the people who are involved in this procedure. In certain instances, the surrogate mothers develop a
strong attachment to the baby and refuse to give away the child on birth. Some
of the biological mothers have won the cases. However, in states where
surrogacy is allowed, this has gone against them and they have lost their
visitation or custody rights. Either of the parties, be it the intended parents
or the surrogate can breach their contract. Some of the examples of contract
breaches include: voluntary abortion by the surrogate without the
consent of intended parents. The surrogate can also breach the contract by
failing to follow certain behavioural restrictions (by drug abuse/ alcohol
consumption for example) during the gestation period. Failure of the intended
parents to pay for all the expenses and fees. Refusal to go for an abortion
following the attending physician’s recommendation. The surrogate mother may face medical complications during the
pregnancy. For example, the surrogate mother is more liable to develop
infections when another woman’s eggs are transplanted into her. Miscarriage is
very common. Since in most cases, more than one embryo is implanted in the
uterus to enhance the chances of successful pregnancy, it also enhances the
possibility of twins or triplets. Often, this becomes crucial for the mother’s
health as well as that of the unborn babies.

            More
further some common ethical issues regarding
surrogacy are, many people still consider surrogacy as a baby selling
process and a surrogate mother is still looked down upon.  There are two types of surrogacy: traditional surrogacy
where the surrogate mother is genetically related to the child she is carrying
on behalf of the intended parent, and gestational surrogacy where the
gestational carrier has no genetic connection to the child she is carrying
(either the intended mother’s ovaries are used, or those of an egg donor).
Parents are often found to be indecisive about whether they should allow their
child to know the identity of the people involved in his/ her delivery.  Different religions have varied approaches to surrogacy.
For example Jewish law permits surrogacy only if it is a full
gestational surrogacy. Also, the gametes of both intended parents should be
included and in vitro fertilization should be the mode of fertilization
followed. Paragraph 2376 of the Catechism of
the Catholic Church states, “Techniques
that entail the dissociation of husband and wife, by the intrusion of a person
other than the couple are gravely immoral.” In recent years surrogacy
has become more of an accepted practice. Still the ethical question remains as
to whether a woman who is being paid for her surrogacy is exploiting infertile
couples and entering the contract for money. Others see the infertile couple as
exploiting the surrogate’s body and taking advantage of a woman who needs
money.

            Therefore,
there are also some couples who enter private agreements with a surrogate in
which agencies are not involved. In certain states  it can be a complex
process for the intended mother to be named as the parent, especially in cases
where the surrogate is the biological mother. Hence, intended parents must
prepare a legal contract where the surrogate agrees to abandon her maternal
rights and thereby allows the intended mother to adopt the child.  Some jurisdictions forbid commercial surrogacy. If doctors discover that
the fetus has potential birth defects or some other health problems, then the
intended parents might decide to discontinue the pregnancy. This can rise to
several legal problems, particularly if they use the sperm from a donor or eggs
not belonging to the surrogate for pregnancy. In this case, the problem is who
gets to decide whether the pregnancy should be carried on or terminated. So before you approach a surrogate, it is imperative
that you seek the advice of legal counsel and make sure that all pertinent
issues are addressed. Also, when the contract is drafted and ready for the
intended parent and the surrogate to sign, make sure that it complies with the
state and local laws involving surrogacy.  Identity of the Child,
there are also ethical considerations that are brought to mind in terms of
informing the child of his or her surrogate mother, as doing so may have an
effect on the child’s self-identity. Complicated process for the non-biological
mother to be named as the parent, particularly in cases where the surrogate is
the biological mother. The surrogate must sign away her maternal rights so that
the intended mother can adopt the child. If the sperm of the adoptive mother’s
husband was used to fertilize the egg, the biological father is named on the
child’s birth certificate. Many states require that a legal contract be drawn
up between the couple and the surrogate and her spouse or partner detailing all
arrangements relating to the pregnancy and birth. The parties involved in a
surrogacy contract should seek the advice of legal counsel to make certain that
all pertinent issues are addressed and that the contract is in compliance with
state and local laws involving surrogacy and adoption.

                        Besides the grey area
surrounding the law because of the question that is it  legal or illegal to pay the
surrogate mother who carries the child?.The
assisted human reproduction act prohibits the provision or acceptance of
consideration to a woman for acting as a surrogate; it is illegal to
pay a surrogate mother for
her services. However, it is legal to
reimburse a surrogate mother for
her reasonable expenses incurred as a result of the surrogacy. There
are two reasons for this:  Although it is
illegal to pay a surrogate in Canada, intended parents may reimburse her for
most reasonable expenses incurred directly as a result of the surrogacy.
 Accordingly, each situation is different and intended parents should
expect to reimburse a surrogate in accordance with the specific circumstances
of the surrogate.  For example, if a surrogate has a complicated pregnancy
and is on bed rest, intended parents can expect that more expenses are likely
to be incurred than if the pregnancy is uncomplicated.  To add some certainty for all parties,
surrogacy agreements often contractually limit the amount that intended parents
will legally be liable to reimburse a surrogate for her reasonable incurred
expenses. Sometimes a surrogate undergoes numerous transfers, which increases
the overall cost of surrogacy. Traditional
surrogacy where the surrogate mother is genetically related to the child she is
carrying on behalf of the intended parent may seem like an attractive option
because without the cost of IVF, the medical process may be less
expensive.  However, from a legal perspective, traditional surrogacy is
fraught with danger and few fertility clinics will engage in the practice.
 That being said, traditional
surrogacy is legal and frequently happens in Canada, although most
often outside of a clinic setting. A
surrogacy lawyer can assist you in navigating the murky Canadian fertility
laws.  The Assisted
Human Reproduction Act governs surrogacy, but also governs how
intended parents and surrogate mothers find each other so it is
worth contacting a fertility lawyer early on in the process. 
Once the intended parents and the surrogate mother have decided that they would
like to work together in building the intended parents’ family, a surrogacy
agreement must be drafted and negotiated, setting out the legal obligations and
rights of each party to the agreement. Once a baby is born via surrogacy,
further legal steps will be needed to be taken in order for the intended
parents, and not the surrogate or her husband or partner, if any, to be
declared the legal parents of the child.

            However surrogacy is a protected ideology
in Canada. Paying directly and arranging for the services of a surrogate in
Canada for a fee is punishable under the AHRA by a fine of up to $500,000 or 10
years in prison. Programs with Traditional surrogacy in India, Mexico and
Thailand are closing down, Canada has become a magnet for international baby
seekers. Some surrogates are left angry after they have completed their job as
they are left with little money, no job, broken relationships, physical
complications and they feel used. One of the biggest criticisms in Canada’s
surrogacy laws is that the language is vague. The surrogates should be paid as
they are putting their lives on hold and possibly in danger for someone else.
They should be entitled to something. There is so much grey area left to be
uncovered by the intended parents and the surrogate. The federal government
should introduce rules that would regain health-care costs. There are some foreign
intended parents who would like to buy insurance for the surrogate and the baby
but there is nothing even close to a system or a program like this. This system
could prevent complicated surrogacy pregnancies. Furthermore paying surrogates
for out of pocket expenses which include medication, childcare, maternity
clothes, travel cost, and also reimbursing her for loss of wage during bed rest
is legal. But paying her mortgage, credit card bills is considered illegal. To
find a surrogate mother Intended parents can always refer to a fertility clinic
and to clear the grey area always visit a professional. In conclusion it’s safe
to say that the topic of surrogacy is very sensitive, so is the job of being a
surrogate. So in Canada surrogates should be legally paid with some exceptions.