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The Ultimate Guide to Surrogacy in Virginia

When you first begin looking into surrogacy in Virginia, it can seem somewhat overwhelming at first. That's true whether you're interested in becoming a surrogate mother or you’re intended parents hoping to grow your family through surrogacy. Our "ultimate guide" for Virginia residents interested in surrogacy includes information on the surrogacy process, how to become a surrogate, how to find a surrogate, and much more.

 Table of Contents

Table of Contents

An Overview of Surrogacy in Virginia

Virginia is a surrogacy-friendly state for both gestational carriers and intended parents. Whether you live in Richmond, Virginia Beach, Norfolk, Charlottesville—or anywhere else in the state—you'll find everything you need to know about gestational surrogacy on this page.

Surrogacy enables couples and individuals from various backgrounds, ages, and sexual orientations to build their families. Intended parents who use surrogacy include:

  • Heterosexual couples who have struggled with infertility
  • Intended mothers who are unable to carry a child
  • Intended parents who want to avoid passing on a genetic defect or health condition to their child
  • LGBTQ+ intended parents who wish to have a genetic connection to their baby

Each surrogacy journey is as unique as the intended parents themselves and their reasons for taking the first steps.

Surrogacy in Virginia for Intended Parents

Surrogacy and egg donation help straight and LGBTQ+ singles and couples in Virginia grow their families. Virginia surrogacy laws make it a surrogacy-friendly state, and intended parents will find many top-rated IVF clinics in the area and on the east coast.

Below you'll be able to find information about surrogacy in Virginia, including what the surrogacy process looks like, how much surrogacy costs in Virginia, what surrogacy program can help you, and so much more. The process can initially feel overwhelming, but the more you read and research, the more familiar it will become. Many professionals are involved in a surrogacy journey, which is a life-changing experience.

We're ready to help intended parents from all over Virginia, from Richmond, Virginia Beach, Norfolk, Charlottesville—or anywhere else in the state.

Circle Surrogacy has two offices close to Virginia – one in Raleigh, NC, and one in Washington, DC –should you ever want to meet with us in person.
 Intended Parents with their hands on their surrogate's belly

The Surrogacy Process in Virginia

The surrogacy process can feel complicated and overwhelming because there is so much to manage. Working with an agency can help you navigate the milestones and events throughout your journey. The intended parent process and surrogate process are different, but they share a common goal: delivery day!

Circle Surrogacy has been helping straight and LGBTQ+ singles and couples grow their families through surrogacy and egg donation since opening their Boston office in 1995, making us one of the first full-service surrogacy agencies in the U.S.

Choosing an Agency

There are many surrogacy agencies out there, all sizes and located across the country; so how do you choose an agency that’s right for you? Developing good chemistry with the agency team and ensuring that the agency shares your surrogacy views are important factors to consider when selecting a surrogacy agency. Those factors are really the keys to a successful surrogacy journey. Beginning your quest toward surrogacy is a big step, so it's essential to do your research!

Choosing an agency with lawyers knowledgeable in assisted reproductive technology (ART) and surrogacy law is essential because laws vary by state (and even by county!). Our lawyers will help you understand the surrogacy laws in Virginia.

Circle Surrogacy's Washington, DC office is close by, and our team is happy to meet with you and discuss surrogacy and egg donation.

Finding a Surrogate and Egg Donor

Before being matched with a surrogate, if you require an egg donor, you may be asked to match with an egg donor and create your embryos before your gestational carrier match. Our egg donor database contains information about the smart, ambitious young women who are excited about the opportunity to help you grow your family.

Finding the perfect surrogate match is an effort that your Matching Team assists you with, encouraging you to form a strong bond with the woman who will carry your baby or babies. If you'd like to find a surrogate with specific criteria, you can share your preference with your Matching team.

Pregnancy and Parenthood

Relationships with surrogates continue to develop during pregnancy. If the surrogate lives close to Virginia, that may even include visiting her for appointments. Your agency supports you through each milestone, helping you prepare to travel for the birth and ensuring you have everything you need to return home safely and securely.

Starting the Surrogacy Process

Scheduling a consultation is the next step for intended parents once they've identified surrogacy as the way they would like to grow their family and have selected an agency.

A surrogacy consultation is an in-depth meeting (about 2 to 2 1/2 hours long) with a parent intake consultant and a lawyer. This private meeting allows us to get to know you and your story, as well as talk about surrogacy and the process as it relates to your situation. We'll help you understand surrogacy programs and surrogacy costs, as well.

If you're not ready for a full consultation but would like more information, you can schedule a pre-consultation with our intake team by contacting [email protected] and someone will reach out to coordinate a time.
 Becoming a Parent in Virginia

Becoming a Parent in Virginia

Making an informed decision to grow your family through surrogacy involves understanding surrogacy laws, the surrogacy process, and surrogacy costs.

Virginia residents who are ready to start a surrogacy journey as intended parents have multiple benefits, including:

  • Local IVF clinics. Circle works closely with the most successful IVF clinics, some of which are located in Virginia or on the East Coast. Reduced travel costs are one benefit of working with a local clinic, but If you’re already established with an IVF clinic, we’re happy to work with your clinic of choice.
  • Local surrogates. Circle works with surrogates from throughout the East Coast, including Virginia, which helps intended parents who want to work with a surrogate mother who lives nearby.
  • Local Washington, DC office. With an office in the Washington, DC Metro area, Intended Parents and Surrogates can meet with the Circle team by appointment, and attend in-person events at the office.
  • Flexible consultation schedule. We are available for consults via Skype during the day and evenings. We can also schedule in-person consultations in Virginia.

How Much Does Surrogacy Cost in Virginia?

At Circle, surrogacy costs in Virginia are fixed in an all-inclusive cost program called the Journey Protection Guarantee Program.

In general, surrogacy costs can be divided into 4 categories:

  • Professional Fees
  • Gestational Carrier (i.e., surrogate) and Egg Donor Fees
  • Medical & Insurance Expenses
  • IVF Expenses

Circle Surrogacy offers fixed costs for professional fees, gestational carrier and egg donor fees, and medical & insurance expenses, something that sets us apart from most agencies. Without fixed costs, surprise fees and financial uncertainty can be a part of the surrogacy journey.

Circle Surrogacy's programs and pricing are structured to achieve two primary goals: success and cost security.

Circle is proud to offer intended parents in Virginia our Journey Protection Guarantee Program, designed to help as many intended parents as possible bring home a baby while reducing variable costs.

Journey Protection Guarantee Program

Surrogacy only: $157,750
Surrogacy plus egg donation: $184,750
(both prices exclude IVF)

Our Journey Protection Guarantee offers Intended Parents:

  • An all-inclusive program that covers all Surrogate fees and expenses for unlimited transfers and any complications that may arise during your journey
  • No surprise costs or invoices, even in scenarios that require a rematch with a new Surrogate

The above costs are for our Surrogacy Only and Surrogacy Plus Egg Donation Programs. For more information about the costs of our other programs, please email us or call us at 617.439.9900.

Finding a Surrogate Mother in Virginia

One of the most exciting milestones in your surrogacy journey is being matched with your surrogate mother. We work with many surrogate mothers from Virginia, in addition to those from surrounding states. With headquarters in Boston and an office in New York City, we are well-represented on the East Coast and in Virginia, making it even easier for surrogates and intended parents to connect. While it’s not a requirement to live near your surrogate, some intended parents prefer to be near the woman carrying their baby(ies).

Our Intended Parent Profile

We use the intended parent profile to get to know you and help our Matching Team find your surrogate match. This profile is filled with information about you and your:

  • Relationship (if you are coupled)
  • Family
  • Hobbies
  • Plans for parenthood
  • Reasons for seeking surrogacy

Sharing photos of yourself, your loved ones, and anything else that gives a good sense of who you are as people is an important part of finding the ideal match.

Intended Parent Matching Criteria

In addition to your profile, there are certain criteria on which you will be matched with your gestational carrier. Intended parent matching criteria includes your preferences on:

  • Level of communication with your surrogate during the journey
  • Location of the surrogate mother
  • Number of embryos to transfer
  • Views on selective reduction and termination

Even if you are looking for a surrogate on your own, it can be helpful to consider these criteria when searching for a good match.

 3 Criteria for Finding Surrogate Mothers

3 Criteria for Finding Surrogate Mothers

We recommend intended parents consider the following criteria when searching for a surrogate mother in Virginia:

  1. Is she an appropriate legal fit? Each state has its own laws regarding surrogacy. Additionally, each country we assist in has different requirements and laws regarding surrogacy. At Circle, your Matching Team (which includes a lawyer) ensures that the laws of the surrogate’s home state (where the delivery will take place) complement the laws of the intended parents' home state/country (including laws around same-sex parenting). The legal department will always approve a match from a legal standpoint before a surrogate profile is presented to the intended parents.
  2. Do her personality and surrogacy expectations match yours? We schedule phone calls or in-person meetings with surrogates and intended parents early in the process. This helps evaluate your personality as it relates to surrogacy. We also look at IPs' and surrogates' expectations and hopes for the journey, including the number of embryos to transfer and communication styles.
  3. Do you agree on expectations surrounding termination and selective reduction? It's important to create a match of IPs and surrogates who share similar views on pregnancy termination. We want to ensure that the surrogate’s views and the intended parents’ views align in case a reduction or termination issue arises. In our experience, many intended parents prefer the option to make the choice of termination.

Circle Surrogacy conducts a full screening of their surrogates to determine which are the most likely to be successful surrogate mothers before matching with intended parents.

Finding an Egg Donor in Virginia

Egg donors are sometimes needed by intended parents who want to grow their family. Choosing the eggs of a young woman who will provide half of your child's biology is a significant part of the journey to becoming parents.

Qualities to Consider

Carefully thinking about the type of women you're looking for is the first step to finding your perfect egg donor match. Are you looking for someone who has similar qualities that you or your partner possess? Or do you wish for a woman whose traits complement your personality or appearance? These are a few things to think about when beginning your egg donor search.

As you start searching, have some thoughts as to what's important to you in an egg donor match, such as:

  • Physical attributes (hair/eye color)
  • Race/ethnicity
  • Education
  • Previous fertility
  • Geography

And remember, nature vs. nurture – not every characteristic or trait is hereditary!

Search Through Our Egg Donor Database

Starting your egg donor search in an egg donor database is an excellent idea. Most databases allow you to search for egg donors based on certain criteria. Circle Surrogacy's egg donor database is easy to use and simple to navigate.

Within each donor profile, you'll find a tremendous amount of additional information, including:

  • Personal information
  • Favorite hobbies, activities, and foods
  • Family medical history
  • Motivation for becoming a donor

It's okay if you're not sure about what you're looking for in a donor. The "I'll know her when I see her" approach works well for some intended parents.

Surrogacy Laws in Virginia

Is surrogacy legal in Virginia? Yes, with a qualification. Compensated surrogacy is legal in the great state of Virginia. However, intended parents are not able to obtain Pre-Birth Orders per court of law. With a surrogacy birth, the gestational carrier is deemed the mother of the child. Once the baby is born, the intended parents must complete an administrative birth certificate amendment process in order to have their names on the birth certificate.

This process does not require court approval or even a court hearing. Rather, the gestational carrier completes paperwork that is submitted to the State Registrar of Vital Records three days after the birth of the child. This paperwork includes a document relinquishing the carrier’s parental rights, along with the gestational carrier agreement and a statement from the physician who performed the assisted conception procedure. After that, receiving an amended birth certificate takes at least 12 weeks.

For same-sex married couples, the birth certificate amendment process is often followed by a second-parent adoption so that the intended parent who is not genetically related to the child may adopt the child to cement the parent-child relationship.

Surrogacy in Virginia for Surrogates

There is so much to learn about becoming a surrogate. We're here to help you navigate surrogacy in Virginia, from understanding what a surrogate is, what to expect, how being a surrogate can affect your life, to how to apply become a surrogate mother.

Virginia is a surrogacy-friendly state, and its eastern location makes it easily accessible to top-rated IVF clinics. We work women from all over Virginia, from Richmond, Virginia Beach, Norfolk, Charlottesville—or anywhere else in the state.

Circle Surrogacy has two offices close to Virginia – one in Raleigh, NC and one if Washington, DC –should you ever want to meet with us in person.

Read on to see how rewarding being a surrogate can be when you help those who aren't able to have a baby on their own experience the joys of parenthood.

What Is a Surrogate

A woman who wishes to carry a baby for someone else is called a surrogate. You may also see or hear the terms surrogate mother, gestational carrier or gestational surrogate. Surrogates carry babies for Intended Parents who are unable to have a baby on their own. Most surrogate mothers are gestational surrogates, meaning the surrogate mother does not use her own eggs and doesn't share any genetics with the baby. Surrogates are compensated and protected legally by a contract signed by all parties.

Circle Surrogacy only works with gestational carriers – women who do not share biology with the baby they are carrying.

Surrogates are caring, selfless and generous. They understand the joy of parenthood and want to give that gift to others who need help.

 Surrogacy announcement on letterboard

5 Things To Know About Being a Surrogate

There is a lot of information out there about becoming a surrogate, but here are 5 quick things for you to know before you begin!

  1. Surrogates do NOT use their own DNA (eggs) for the babies they carry
  2. Surrogates are paid throughout the entirety of their journey (not at the end) and start before pregnancy
  3. Surrogates have a say in with whom they match; all matches are mutual
  4. Surrogates DO need to give themselves injections as part of the IVF process; most surrogates say these needles are no big deal
  5. Surrogates will have to say goodbye to the baby; they look forward to "giving the baby back" to their intended parents; because they are not genetically related to the baby, surrogates do not feel an "attachment" to the babies they carry

Ready to learn more? Read on!

The Process for Surrogates in Virginia

At Circle, our Virginia surrogates receive the support and guidance of our experienced social workers and program coordinators, many who have been surrogates themselves. We support women wherever they are in the process whether they are ready to apply now or are interested but want to talk with experienced surrogates or Surrogate Advisors. Here is an overview of the process:

  • Pre-screening
  • Consultation
  • Matching with intended parents
  • Medical screening and legal contracts
  • Monitoring appointments and embryo transfer
  • Pregnancy
  • Delivery

Learn more about the surrogacy process at Circle.

 Surrogate Mother Carrying Twins

Getting Started as a Surrogate

Wherever you are in your journey, we suggest completing our online surrogacy application. It takes only about 10 minutes to complete and there is no obligation to proceed if you aren’t ready.

Becoming a Surrogate Mother in Virginia

Virginia residents who wish to apply to become a surrogate can work with Circle Surrogacy. We can help you become a surrogate in Richmond, Norfolk, or anywhere else in Virginia. Since 1995, we've helped numerous intended parents and surrogates achieve successful surrogacies in the East and all over the United States.

Requirements for Becoming a Surrogate in Virginia

Here are some requirements an applicant must meet to become a surrogate in Virginia:

  • Has delivered a child of her own and is currently parenting at least one child.
  • Has had uncomplicated pregnancies and deliveries, as documented by medical records.
  • Is between 21 and 44 years of age.
  • Typically has a Body Mass Index (BMI) of no higher than 33. Calculate my BMI.
  • Is a citizen, legal resident, or legal immigrant of the United States. If a surrogate is a legal resident or legal immigrant of the United States, the surrogate must be able to provide documentation that is valid for at least 2 years.
  • Does not participate in the following government aid programs: cash assistance, welfare, public housing, and Section 8. All other forms of government assistance will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

Review all surrogate requirements

 Family Supporting Pregnant Surrogate

Benefits of Being a Surrogate in Virginia

Working with an East Coast surrogacy agency as a surrogate in Virginia offers many benefits, including the fact that we work with many intended parents from the East Coast. Surrogates from Virginia will have the opportunity to work with intended parents who live relatively close to them. Plus, Circle has staff local to Virginia and surrounding states, some of whom are experienced carriers!

As a Virginia surrogate, you may also enjoy other benefits, including:

  • Gaining an incredible sense of self-fulfillment from giving the greatest gift humanly possible to another family
  • Working with local intended parents and clinics
  • Receiving exceptional compensation!
  • Building a life-long relationship with forever-grateful intended parents
  • Working with a personal journey coordination team and licensed social worker
  • Consulting with legal representation to guide you through the legal process

How Much Do Surrogates Get Paid in Virginia?

Women apply to become surrogate mothers in Virginia because they want to help others experience the joy of parenthood. Even though compensation is part of becoming a surrogate, the monetary incentive isn't the primary reason women choose to become surrogates. Surrogates enjoy an indescribable sense of fulfillment from helping intended families bring a child into the world, and that's a feeling that cannot be found doing anything else.

As a Virginia surrogate, you have the opportunity to earn between $55,000 and $60,000 in total payments and benefits. Surrogate mothers are paid a base fee of $35,000 to $40,000 plus additional compensation and benefits for milestones along their journey.

Calculate your surrogate pay with our surrogate compensation calculator.

Surrogate payments are made monthly, and surrogate mothers start earning compensation and benefits even before they are pregnant.

How Circle Surrogacy Supports Surrogates

There is no substitute for experience, which is why Circle Surrogacy provides such excellent support to our surrogates. Many members of our staff have been surrogates themselves, and they understand what's needed on this unique journey.

Here are some of the ways we support surrogates:

  • Top-notch prescreening, social work, and legal support from the moment they fill out their application until months after they deliver. Our team is ready to answer any question you can dream of (and then some).
  • Private social groups for surrogates. We connect surrogate mothers through private social groups and schedule exclusive events with the Circle team.
  • Experts you can trust. Having access to skilled, trustworthy experts is crucial. We work with attorneys who understand the details of ART (assisted reproduction technology) law and recommend them to surrogates when it's time to review legal contracts.

Read our blog post about the 10 steps to becoming a surrogate.

Finding a Perfect Intended Parent Match

As a gestational surrogate in Virginia, being matched with appropriate intended parents is as important as your decision to become a surrogate. This is a personal journey unlike any other, and you want to be sure that you connect with and trust them fully. That’s why Circle Surrogacy built an extensive and thorough matching process.

First, our Surrogate Support Team searches for the perfect intended parent(s) based on personality fit and legal circumstances. You’ll get to review each other’s profiles, ask questions, and generally get to know one another. There will also be an initial Skype call and, possibly, an in-person meeting. It’s all about making sure both you and the intended parent(s) feel entirely comfortable with the match. And of course, the surrogacy agreement only moves forward if you do.

Circle works with single parents, LGBTQ+ and heterosexual couples, domestic and international couples, and more. We’re confident you’ll be able to find a great match.

Getting Started

Whether you are intended parents or interested in becoming a surrogate or egg donor, the surrogacy process can be one of the most rewarding experiences of your life. Learning more about surrogacy is the first step of your journey.