How To Become A Surrogate Mother In Nigeria: Cost, Eligibility, Requirements
Surrogacy is a method of assisted reproduction often supported by a legal agreement, whereby a woman agrees to carry and deliver a child on behalf of another couple or person, who will become the child’s parent(s) after birth.
Through IVF, embryos are created in a lab at a fertility clinic. Sometimes the intended parents use their own genetic material. Sometimes, an egg donor is required. At the fertility clinic, 1-2 embryos are implanted into a gestational carrier, which carries the baby(ies) to term.
In recent times, there has been a boom in families including celebrities going via the surrogacy route to have children.
Although there is no law or statute regulating the act of surrogacy in Nigeria, surrogacy contracts and agreements remain enforceable. As a result, becoming a surrogate mother in Nigeria can be a complex and risky process.
How much does surrogacy cost in Nigeria?
According to research, Surrogacy is a multi-million naira business in Nigeria. On average, surrogate mothers are paid between N2m and N7m.
Here is a breakdown of the cost of surrogacy in full.
1. Medical expenses
This may include the cost of fertility treatments such as in vitro fertilization (IVF), embryo transfer, and prenatal care. Depending on the fertility clinic or hospital, the cost of these medical procedures may vary.
2. Legal expenses
Because surrogacy is not legally recognized in Nigeria, it may be necessary to hire a lawyer to draft a surrogacy agreement and navigate the legal complexities of the surrogacy process. Legal fees may vary depending on the complexity of the surrogacy arrangement and the services provided by the lawyer.
3. Surrogate compensation
Surrogates are typically compensated for their time and effort, as well as any medical or travel expenses incurred during the surrogacy process. The amount of compensation may vary depending on the type of surrogacy arrangement and the specific services provided by the surrogate.
4. Miscellaneous expenses
These may include travel expenses, accommodation costs, and other expenses incurred during the surrogacy process.
Here is a breakdown of the steps to becoming a surrogate mother.
1. Meet the eligibility criteria
Each surrogacy agency will have its own eligibility criteria for surrogates, which may include age (usually between 21 and 45), health status, and previous pregnancy experience. Be sure to carefully review and meet all of the agency’s requirements before proceeding with the surrogacy process. It is important to note that some agencies may require surrogates to be married and have their own children.
2. Seek legal advice
Because surrogacy is not legally recognized in Nigeria, it is essential to seek legal advice from a qualified lawyer who is familiar with surrogacy laws and regulations in other countries. A lawyer can advise you on the legal risks and potential implications of pursuing a surrogacy arrangement, as well as the legal rights and responsibilities of all parties involved.
3. Find a reputable surrogacy agency
While there are no formal surrogacy agencies in Nigeria, you may be able to find a reputable international surrogacy agency that has experience working with Nigerian surrogates. It is essential to do your research and choose an agency that has a proven track record of ethical and safe surrogacy practices. You can look for reviews and ratings of the agency online, as well as ask for referrals from other surrogates or intended parents who have worked with the agency before.
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4. Undergo medical and psychological evaluations
As part of the surrogacy process, you will likely be required to undergo medical and psychological evaluations to ensure that you are physically and emotionally capable of carrying a pregnancy to term. The medical evaluation will include a review of your medical history, physical examination, and various tests to assess your reproductive health. The psychological evaluation will assess your mental health and ensure that you are prepared for the emotional and psychological challenges of surrogacy.
5. Sign a surrogacy agreement
Once you have been matched with the intended parents, you will need to sign a surrogacy agreement that outlines the terms and conditions of the surrogacy arrangement, including compensation, medical care, and legal responsibilities. The surrogacy agreement will also specify the legal rights and responsibilities of all parties involved, including the surrogate, the intended parents, and the surrogacy agency (if applicable).
It is important to note that surrogacy can be a complex and emotionally challenging process, and it is essential to carefully consider all of the potential risks and benefits before deciding to become a surrogate mother.
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