When applying to become a surrogate, you might be wondering what your background check will entail and who will see it. While the thought of someone prying into your past might sound intimidating, many surrogacy agencies adopted this process to help both the surrogate and the intended parents have a safe and successful surrogacy experience.
This article will cover everything from what’s involved in the background check, what information is required, and who has access to your file.
What is Involved in a Background Check to Become a Surrogate?
First, your surrogacy agency will interview you and check your references before deciding whether to include you as a potential surrogate match for their intended parents. Surrogacy agencies are typically very selective when it comes to who they choose to put into their databases to ensure the safety and security of all parties involved. We at GSHC Surrogacy Agency make special efforts to ensure happy and healthy matches for all gestational surrogates and intended parents.
During the application process, your agency will conduct extensive research—including criminal background checks, child abuse screenings, as well as interviews with intended parents. These screenings make sure you and anyone in your home over the age of 18 have no criminal history and are not involved in any civil disputes that could interfere with your ability to be an excellent surrogate.
A background check verifies that you are of sound character, not actively involved with any criminal activity, have no convictions for violent crimes or felonies (within the last seven years), do not have more than five minor traffic violations within the previous five years, and are free of any infectious diseases.
Who will See my Background Check?
After a thorough review of your background, an in-depth report is provided to your agency so that intended parents feel confident about finding their perfect surrogate match. Your agency will not share this information with anyone — including your intended parents — to maintain an ethical process. However, GSHC Surrogacy Agency reserves the right to disqualify a potential surrogacy match if they find anything of note on the criminal background report.
Please be aware that anything that shows up on your criminal background check will be closely considered when deciding on a match, so it’s best to be as transparent as possible throughout the process. Honesty is the key to a stress-free evaluation.
What Kind of Information Will be Included? Will my Partner Need to be Screened?
Background checks offer information on drug convictions, violent offenses, sex crimes, or fraud/embezzlement—just some of the things that might go uncovered in an interview or reference check. We also check for bankruptcies, civil judgments, and aliases. It’s equally important to screen spouses and partners to ensure that all parties are not putting a future family at risk.
The following is a list of items typically found on a criminal records report:
- Pending cases (those that are unresolved)
- Convictions (those that a judge or jury of law has imposed)
- Misdemeanors and felonies (Please note: No expungement records are included)
- Offenses in which the person was not arrested or charged with but is listed as an alleged perpetrator
- Current violations (those who have been arrested or charged with a crime in the past 60 days)
- Charges that were dismissed, quashed, suppressed, acquitted
Will a Prior Offense Disqualify me From Becoming a Surrogate?
Many people are curious about how a previous transgression will affect their ability to become either an intended parent or a gestational carrier. While a past offense certainly can impact whether or not you’ll be able to move forward, it all depends on the circumstances.
Some agencies will offer to waive their requirement of having an in-depth background check if the transgression was committed at least five years ago and is not considered relevant to parenting or being a gestational carrier. More than anything, these relationships require transparency and trust, so it will be much easier if you’re upfront about any indiscretions in your past.
How Will I Know if I Passed?
The agency will review your background check results and may contact you for clarification if anything is noticed. If you pass the screening process, GSHC willl help match you to the ideal intended parent(s)!
Ready to start your journey as a surrogate? Feel free to contact us and begin the application process here.