Some couples or single individuals choose to have children using a surrogate. Although no definitive family law addresses surrogacy in North Carolina, people can still choose to have children using this method. What does exist in the state is a comprehensive process potential parents and surrogates go through to protect their rights and interests.
Traditional and compensated surrogacy
In North Carolina, it is legal to compensate a woman for her services as a surrogate beyond the compensation she receives for her medical expenses. On the other hand, altruistic (or traditional) surrogacy means the woman volunteers to carry a pregnancy without getting financially reimbursed in return. Traditional surrogacy is also not governed by formal laws. In some areas, the surrogate is listed as the mother on the birth certificate and perhaps the biological father, in which case it may be necessary to obtain a parentage order or for the secondary parent to adopt the child.
Agreements and contracts
As with many other contracts and agreements, a surrogacy agreement in North Carolina covers the details of the surrogacy and speaks to possible liabilities and risks involved. A surrogacy can’t take place in the state without a contract under the counsel of an attorney who can assure the process takes place safely and legally. Intended parents and the surrogate should obtain independent legal advice, and lawyers help them negotiate a number of terms including financial compensation.
A surrogacy contract is enforceable in North Carolina if both parties sign it freely and agree to its terms. Seeking the assistance of a legal professional familiar with the process could prove invaluable before moving forward with surrogacy. If completed in the proper manner, surrogacy can be a rewarding journey for both surrogates and intended parents.