If becoming a surrogate in Washington, D.C., is something that’s in your heart, then you have the capacity to help people who have been dreaming of having a baby. But a giving heart is just the first of many surrogate mother requirements. Washington, D.C., has a number of legally-established requirements that prospective surrogates (and intended parents) must meet before they can begin their surrogacy journey.
In addition to those base requirements, the professional that you work with may have additional Washington, D.C., surrogacy requirements that you may need to meet, which can vary somewhat from one professional to the next. This guide will help you to better understand the requirements for surrogates in Washington, D.C., so you can find out if you’re eligible to become a surrogate.
“Is There an Age Limit to Being a Surrogate in Washington, D.C.?”
Yes. The District of Columbia has a minimum age requirement, and additionally, all surrogacy professionals will also have an upper age limit for surrogates. You’re not alone in asking this question. One of the most frequently asked questions about surrogacy requirements in D.C. is, “How old do you have to be to be a surrogate mother in the District of Columbia?”
According to the District of Columbia’s gestational surrogacy statute, you must be at least 21 years old in order to become a surrogate. There are also age restrictions for surrogacy in D.C. and in every state, with every surrogacy professional, that place an upper limit on the age of prospective surrogates, because the age range in which a woman’s body can adapt to the extreme changes of pregnancy with relative ease is unfortunately limited. These age restrictions are intended to reduce the amount of risk for everyone involved, but especially for the surrogate and for the baby.
Each surrogacy professional may have their own age requirements, but typically, the age requirement for surrogates in Washington, D.C., is 21 to 40 years old.
“What are the Health Requirements to Be a Surrogate Mother in D.C.?”
There are surrogate health requirements in D.C. and in every state, and with every professional. Some women are concerned that a specific health issue they have will prevent them from being able to meet the surrogate health requirements in Washington, D.C. They ask, “Is surrogacy without previous pregnancy an option?” “Is there a weight requirement to be a surrogate in the District of Columbia?” “Is surrogacy after tubal ligation an option for me?”
The District of Columbia states that in order to become a surrogate, you must:
- Have given birth to at least one live child
- Have undergone a medical evaluation in which you were approved to serve as a surrogate
Surrogacy professionals also have these requirements and more. While the specific surrogate health requirements for your professional may vary, most professionals will also require that you:
- Have had no more than five vaginal births and/or three cesarean births
- Be smoke- and drug-free, which includes second-hand smoke exposure
- Have had no previous pregnancy complications
- Have a BMI between about 19-33 (calculate your BMI here)
If you meet the first round of health criteria to be a surrogate in Washington, D.C., you’ll proceed to medical screening processes that typically involve blood and urine tests, physicals and more. This is done to ensure that you’re physically healthy enough to undergo the medical processes of surrogacy, which involve fertility hormones, medications, embryo transfers and more. Learn more about the health requirements to be surrogate mother in the District of Columbia, and whether or not your specific health concern may affect your ability to become a surrogate, here.
“What are the Mental and Emotional Requirements to Be a Surrogate Mother in D.C.?”
There are also several mental and emotional criteria for surrogacy in Washington, D.C. that you’ll be asked to meet as a potential surrogate. Women have often asked, “Can anyone be a surrogate mother in D.C.?” The answer is no. It takes a certain type of person who is mentally and emotionally prepared for the journey ahead.
The surrogacy laws in D.C. state that you must:
- Have completed a mental health evaluation by a mental health professional in which you were approved to serve as a surrogate; provided that the mental health professional has received specialized training in, or has a practice that includes a specialty in, collaborative reproduction; and
- Have completed, with the intended parent or parents, a joint consultation with a mental health professional regarding issues that could arise during the surrogacy.
Those are also the typical mental health qualifications for being a surrogate in Washington, D.C., that surrogacy professionals anywhere will require of you. Surrogacy professionals also favor prospective surrogates who have a strong emotional support system at home, preferably a spouse or partner who is supportive and encouraging of you and your surrogacy decision, as well as at least one child you’re raising in your home.
“Are There Other Requirements for Surrogacy in Washington, D.C.?”
Yes. There are several additional requirements for surrogates in Washington, D.C., that may affect whether or not surrogacy is an option for you. Women who are curious about surrogacy requirements will ask questions about additional requirements like: “Who can be a surrogate in D.C.? Will I need a car?” “If I’m receiving government financial aid, am I eligible to be a surrogate mother in the District of Columbia?”
There are additional surrogate qualifications that your Washington, D.C., professional may require you to meet as a potential surrogate, but these requirements can vary. They’ll usually ask that you:
- Be able to speak English fluently
- Be a permanent resident or citizen of the U.S.
- Complete a background check
- Not currently be receiving any government financial assistance
- Be able to commit to traveling to all surrogacy- and pregnancy-related appointments for approximately a year
- Have the confirmed commitment of your spouse or domestic partner to your surrogacy process, if applicable — they’ll need to participate in the legal processes
If you meet all of the listed Washington, D.C., surrogate qualifications, and you have a desire to help people to become parents, then you’re likely a great candidate for becoming a surrogate mother!
Do you think you might meet the qualifications for being a surrogate in Washington, D.C.? Do you want to begin helping hopeful parents to grow their families through surrogacy? Contact a surrogacy professional now to receive more information about how to become a surrogate mother in the District of Columbia.