Are you worried that surrogacy in Arkansas is too complicated and overwhelming? Don’t be!
Looking for information on some of the laws and regulations concerning surrogacy in the Natural State? You’ve come to the right place. If you’re considering surrogacy in Arkansas, read on to learn more about the process and the rules and regulations of surrogacy in Arkansas to keep in mind as you’re considering a surrogacy journey.
Surrogacy research can be overwhelming; take your time, do your research, and most importantly, always discuss your options with a qualified Assisted Reproduction attorney. This page is in no way meant as a substitute for due diligence with legal counsel specializing in surrogacy.
Surrogacy contract jurisdiction usually follows the state the surrogate is a resident of, though sometimes the agreement is done in the state of residence of the Intended Parent(s).
Learn more about the legal, financial, and insurance implications of surrogacy in Arkansas and how Surrogacy Place can help with matching.
- Surrogacy is legal in Arkansas and allows for both traditional and gestational surrogacy.
- The state is among the list of “surrogacy-friendly states”, though the recent abortion ban in the state may cause pause for some Intended Parents or surrogates, though travel to other states for reproductive health care services are permitted.
- The surrogacy process in Arkansas involves medical screenings, psychological evaluations, and legal contracts.
- Surrogates in Arkansas must be at least 21 years old and have had a successful pregnancy, among other qualifications.
- Surrogacy Place is a resource that can help make the surrogacy process in Arkansas easier and more affordable.
What Is Surrogacy?
Surrogacy is a process that involves a woman carrying a baby for someone else.
Arkansas surrogacy law allows for both traditional surrogacy and gestational surrogacy, with both Intended Parents and the surrogate needing to be legally represented (Intended Parents pay for the surrogate’s representation). The surrogacy process in Arkansas consists of medical screenings, psychological evaluations, legal contracts, and more.
Surrogacy in Arkansas can be a successful and rewarding experience for both the Intended Parents and the surrogate.
Do You Need to Use a Surrogacy Agency in Arkansas?
Nope. Independency surrogacy is a popular option for Intended Parents and surrogates alike.
Many Intended Parents and surrogates prefer to do independent journeys, including in Arkansas.
Arkansas is considered a surrogacy-friend state though that changes with the recent overturning of Roe v. Wade and Arkansas’ subsequent trigger ban on abortions at all stages. The lack of access to Reproductive healthcare for surrogates means pregnancies in the state carry more risks.
Surrogacy arrangements, both gestational and traditional, are expressly permitted and contracts are honored in Arkansas. Both Intended Parents and surrogates have protections since commercial surrogacy is codified into law and there are regulations governing its practice.
Always seek legal advice from a qualified Assisted-Reproduction-specializing attorney to understand how Arkansas’ favorable laws can help ensure your journey meets legal and ethical standards in the state.
Who Can Be an Intended Parent in Arkansas?
There are no restrictions on what types of families can pursue surrogacy in Arkansas whether it be married or unmarried couples, individuals, or members of the LGBTQ+ community. In Arkansas, Intended Parents can start or grow their families through surrogacy and hundreds, if not thousands, of other Intended Parents in the state have had children born through surrogacy. Reasons vary but include being members of the LGBTQ+ community, infertility (unexplained or specified), and potential pregnancies would likely cause a significant and known health risk to the mother or to her fetus.
If you’ve done your research and are interested in starting the surrogacy process, Arkansas can be a great place to explore your options.
Who Can Be a Surrogate in Arkansas?
Ask yourself – do you qualify? If you’re unsure, you can take this short quiz to find out.
- Have you had complications-free pregnancies, including no symptoms of post-partum depression?
- Are you between the ages of 21-44?
- Do you own your own home or have a long-term lease? Do you have reliable and safe long-term housing?
- Are you done with your own family? Do you have no intensions of having more kids?
- Are you financially independent and secure?
- Are you willing to take all medications and follow protocols as assigned by your Intended Parents’ Reproductive Endocrinologist and your OB-GYN?
- Is your BMI in a healthy range (e.g. < 30)?
- Are you smoke and drug free and willing to abstain from alcohol and harmful substances while pregnant?
If you answered yes to questions above, pending a review of your specific medical and pregnancy history, you may be qualified to become a surrogate. If you are, the next step is to match with Intended Parents. If you’re considering an independent journey (surrogacy without a third-party agency as the middle man), Surrogacy Place is a great starting point for matching with like-minded Intended Parents.
After matching, you will go through a formal medial screening and review. At that point, legal contracts will be drafted and agreed upon. Assuming everything is going smoothly, you’ll reach transfer day and hopefully a pregnancy soon after!
Want even more info on the steps you need to take to become a surrogate in Arkansas? Check out this guide on how to become a surrogate.
What Is the Legal Process of Surrogacy in Arkansas?
Surrogates and Intended Parents should consult with their respective attorneys in addressing the legal requirements in Arkansas, as well as, work with their lawyers on contract negotiations including compensation and the responsibilities of each side. Both parties must be in agreement on major aspects of surrogacy prior to the transfer of any embryos including thoughts on vaccines, delivery location, diet/lifestyle, and communication throughout.
Post Dobbs (the overturning of Roe v. Wade), abortion is illegal in all circumstances except for the imminent death of mother or the medically verifiable death of the fetus. Because of that, there are notable risks when the surrogate is based in Arkansas. Both surrogates and Intended Parents must understand why potential health risks this poses for the gestational carrier.
Since it’s not illegal to travel out of state to get an abortion, it may be possible for the surrogacy contract to include reimbursement and assistance traveling out of state to get an abortion as needed.
What Are the Financial Implications of Surrogacy in Arkansas?
It is important to consider the financial implications of surrogacy when planning your journey in Arkansas. Before you begin, it’s important to understand the costs associated with surrogacy, as well as the legal contracts involved. If you’re a surrogate, your medical and pregnancy costs should be fully covered by your Intended Parents.
Depending on the situation, Intended Parents may need to cover medical bills such as the costs associated with IVF and other reproductive technologies. They will also need to cover the medical bills associated with the surrogacy process. If the surrogate does not have surrogacy coverage on her health insurance, the Intended Parents will need to purchase a plan for her. In addition, surrogates are generally compensated for their services in commercial surrogacy.
How much can Intended Parents expect to pay? See our cost breakdown guide.
What Is the Insurance Coverage for Surrogates in Arkansas?
In Arkansas, it’s important to find out what insurance coverage is available for surrogates. Surrogacy often involves substantial expenses and intricate procedures. An essential element in managing costs and ensuring comprehensive protection for both Intended Parents and the surrogate is securing sufficient insurance coverage. This coverage serves to alleviate financial burdens and address potential risks. It is crucial to provide your surrogate with comprehensive medical insurance throughout her pregnancy, along with a life insurance policy designed to safeguard her family in the unfortunate event of fatal pregnancy complications.
As an Intended Parent, you have various choices when it comes to insurance for surrogacy, encompassing both medical and life coverage. There are companies like ART Risk Solutions that specialize in evaluating insurance plans specifically for surrogacy.
What Are the Mental Health Considerations for Surrogates in Arkansas?
Considering becoming a surrogate in Arkansas? Make sure to understand the mental health implications to ensure you’re prepared for the process. Being a surrogate is a major life decision.
Understand the type of surrogacy:
- Traditional: Surrogate is the biological mother
- Gestational: Surrogate isn’t the biological mother
Be aware of the legal steps:
- Be represented by an attorney (that Intended Parents pay for)
- Understand how parentage rights for the Intended Parents are established
- Understand local rules and regulations
Be prepared for the emotional rollercoaster:
- Carrying a child that is not your own.
- Post-birth depression is possible even if you’ve never had post-partum symptoms previously.
Being a surrogate is an incredibly rewarding experience, but it’s important to understand the mental health implications before beginning the process.
Establishing Parentage Rights for Intended Parents in Arkansas
Pre-birth parentage orders related to surrogacy are commonplace in the state and are usually given when there’s a genetic relationship to the child(ren). This goes for married couples or single individuals. In couples (married or single), if only one Intended Parent is genetically related to the child(ren), the other IP must complete a second-parent adoption. Since 2011 and especially after 2015, same sex couples are treated the same as heterosexual couples for the purposes of establishing parentage.
How Is the Surrogacy Agreement Established in Arkansas
Understanding the surrogacy agreement is essential to creating a successful surrogacy journey in Arkansas.
Surrogates and Intended Parents must adhere to the following:
- Arkansas Code: Arkansas Code § 9-10-201 governs surrogacy agreements in Arkansas.
- Stepparent Adoption and Adoptions to Same-Sex Couples: For those who aren’t the biological parents of the child, stepparent adoption or adoption to same-sex couples may be necessary.
- Donation: All donations must be voluntary and without compensation.
- Egg Donors and Sperm Donors: Egg and sperm donors must also be legally bound by their agreements.
- Initial Birth Certificate: Though pre-birth orders are routinely given, the surrogate’s name is listed on the initial birth certificate pursuant to Arkansas Code § 9-10-201. A substituted birth certificate may be issued after the child is born naming Intended Parents as legal parents.
What Post-Birth Responsibilities Do Parents Have in Arkansas
When it comes to post-birth responsibilities, Intended Parents in Arkansas should be aware of all the legal and emotional risks associated with surrogacy. There are responsibilities that need to be taken seriously. A surrogate’s worst fear is Intended Parents who try to leave the baby with her (this is just as worrisome as the fear Intended Parents have that a surrogate will want to keep their child!).
After the birth of their child, Intended Parents should be prepared to assume immediate financial and legal responsibility for the child. This includes medical insurance for their child and paying for their care in the hospital, as well, as immediately placing their children in their care.
Matching With a Qualified Surrogate or Intended Parent in Arkansas
Intended Parents and surrogates can find each other using Surrogacy Place’s database and search tools. Whatever you require for your journey, have the discussion directly with potential matches.
Surrogacy Place is always free for surrogates to access. Intended Parents pay a very small subscription fee. Want to get started? Create your account.
Here’s some advantages of doing an independent journey in Arkansas
The most obvious is that Intended Parents will pay significantly less for surrogacy in Arkansas because most of their available budget does not go towards a third-party agency. Since Surrogacy Place allows you to match directly, there’s no need to pay an agency tens of thousands of dollars. In turn, this potentially allows surrogates to achieve a higher base comp as most of the Intended Parent(s)’ budget isn’t going towards an agency.
There’s also the latitude to choose the exact match that works for you with no pressure from an agency, and you’re not limited to whomever an agency happens to have in their database at a given moment. Surrogacy Place is open to everyone; surrogates from all over the United States and Intended Parents from the US and across the globe.
It’s important to remember that when matching either through an agency or independently that you are responsible for your own due diligence, though your attorney and your doctor are there as partners to assist you in approving any selected matches.
Looking for a surrogacy guide for another state? Explore our surrogacy by state directory.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is It Necessary to Use a Surrogacy Agency in Arkansas?
Who Can Be an Intended Parent in Arkansas?
Arkansas welcomes diverse types of families, including married or unmarried couples, individuals, and members of the LGBTQ+ community. Surrogacy in Arkansas is a viable option for those facing infertility, health risks during pregnancy, or other circumstances.
Who Can Be a Surrogate in Arkansas?
To qualify as a surrogate in Arkansas, you should generally meet specific criteria, including having complication-free pregnancies, being between the ages of 21-44, having stable housing, and being financially independent, among other factors. Consult with a qualified medical professional to determine your eligibility.
What Is the Legal Process for Surrogacy in Arkansas?
Surrogacy in Arkansas involves legal considerations, including contract negotiations, compensation agreements, and establishing parentage rights. Seek legal counsel to navigate these complexities.
What Are Financial Implications for Surrogacy in Arkansas?
It’s essential to understand the financial aspects of surrogacy in Arkansas. Surrogate medical and pregnancy costs should be covered by Intended Parents, including expenses related to IVF, reproductive technologies, and surrogacy health care coverage. Surrogates are also compensated for their services in commercial surrogacy.
What are the Post-birth Responsibilities for Intended Parents?
Intended Parents in Arkansas must be prepared for post-birth responsibilities, including immediate financial and legal responsibility for the child. A clear understanding of these responsibilities is essential to a successful surrogacy journey.
How Can I find a Surrogacy or Intended Parent in Arkansas?
Surrogacy Place offers a database and search tools for Intended Parents and surrogates to connect directly. This independent approach can be cost-effective and allows for a more tailored match. Remember to conduct due diligence and consult with professionals to ensure a successful match.