The Matching Process for Intended Parents: How We Find Your Perfect Surrogate

July 14, 2022

Finding a surrogate is a big milestone in the surrogacy process, but there is a lot that goes into finding the right one. It can be overwhelming and intimidating to many, and we are often asked “How do I know I picked the right person?” Fortunately, here at Hatch, we have an extensive and exceptional history with the success of our matches between our surrogates and intended parents. This article for intended parents will introduce how we find the perfect surrogate match for you at Hatch.  

The Matching Process

Finding your surrogate match is an important start to your surrogacy journey. Before you can be matched with a surrogate, you will work closely with your Match Specialist to discuss what you are looking for in your surrogacy journey.  

For example, there are a few things to think about:

  •       Do you prefer a surrogate who lives near to you?
  •       What are the top qualities of a surrogate mother that you are looking for?
  •       What type of relationship or communication level do you expect to have with your surrogate?

Thinking about these questions will help you and your coordinator find the most appropriate surrogate match.

At Hatch, your surrogacy coordinator will work closely with you to understand your wants and needs so we can recommend the most compatible matches. For your safety and peace of mind, everyone involved—from surrogates to intended parents—is pre-screened extensively prior to matching.

In the next section, we will explain the comprehensive pre-screening process that Hatch performs prior to a match.

Pre-Screening for Surrogates

Our team reviews all surrogate applications thoroughly. Our surrogacy team is made up of several experienced surrogates; they are the best in connecting with every applicant to talk through their answers on her application and answer any questions that they might have. When it comes to our surrogacy options, our team gets to know all the surrogate applicants well by talking to them about their motivation to become a surrogate, their family relationships, life experiences, support network, expectations, and preferences. These conversations will help to reduce the risk of future match breaks and disappointment for any parties.

We fully screen all our surrogates prior to matching them with an intended parent. The pre-screening process ensures that a surrogate candidate is physically and mentally ready for their surrogacy journey. Knowing that your surrogate has completed this screening can provide some added comfort to you as an intended parent.

The pre-screening process includes:

  • Background check
  • Living environment assessment
  • Criminal background check
  • Psychological evaluation provided by a licensed mental health professional
  • Insurance information

We also obtain OB and delivery records from all previous pregnancies for the IVF physician to review for pre-approval. We make sure that all our surrogate candidates meet the below criteria:

  • Meet age requirements and have a healthy BMI
  • Have had a full term and healthy pregnancy
  • Are a non-smoker and have a healthy lifestyle
  • Have a source of income other than government assistance
  •  Be free of medications for anxiety and depression and narcotics

Hatch’s best-in-class surrogate screening process means that intended parents will only be matched with a surrogate candidate who meets Hatch's highest standards.

Once you and the surrogate mutually agree on the match, a video match meeting will be facilitated by our coordinator to allow for a proper introduction. Our coordinator will then check in separately afterward to confirm that you are all comfortable moving forward and address any additional questions.

What Should Intended Parents Expect When Meeting their Surrogate for the First Time?

It is normal to feel nervous and excited about meeting your surrogate for the first time. At Hatch, we have been matching surrogates and intended parents for over 30 years. Our experienced staff will help you to ensure that your first video call is successful. The best way to have a good connection is to be yourself and let the conversation flow naturally. Intended parents want to learn about their surrogates and surrogates also want to learn about their intended parents to make the right decision. Before the meeting, review the surrogate’s profile thoroughly and be prepared to share your own story and what led you to surrogacy. It is also important to talk about your expectations for the level of desired communication. The key is to keep the first conversation light and not plan on giving a list of requirements. It is always good to start by introducing each other and discussing general lifestyle questions.

What are the Matching Criteria?

  Social fit:

This is composed of two criteria: compatible personalities and compatible desires for your journey. Our matching team reviews the potential match to ensure good personality fits, our goal is to make sure that both parties have a comfortable relationship throughout the entirety of the journey.

Medical fit:

This is determined by the intended parent’s IVF physician. Your IVF physician will review the surrogate’s previous OBGYN and delivery records, after the match is confirmed, your surrogate will also go through a comprehensive in-person medical screening.

Legal fit:

In the United States, each state has its own laws regarding surrogacy.  Some states are more compatible than others for a specific match, and Hatch only works with surrogates located in surrogacy-friendly states. Additionally, each country we assist has different requirements and laws regarding surrogacy. Therefore, our legal team 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. We will make sure that every match is a safe legal fit.

Financial fit:

Costs vary for each surrogacy journey, which is determined by several variables. We align financial needs to accommodate both parties.

How Long Does it Take to be matched with a surrogate?

Most intended parents want to know first and foremost, how long it will take to match with a surrogate. Our team invests their time and expertise to only offer the best candidates available to intended parents. The time it takes for you to match with a surrogate will depend on each unique case.  At Hatch, the surrogate matching process takes an average of 8-9 months whereas other agencies typically take 12-14 months. As we mentioned in the previous section of this article, we also do all the pre-screening for you.

If you are interested in additional information regarding the surrogacy experience and how Hatch can help you in your journey to parenthood, please reach out to us here.

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