International Surrogacy Agency
Beautiful Journeys Begin With Baby Steps™
Why Choose Baby Steps
Families who have always dreamed of having children of their own but are unable to carry a child to term may choose to turn to surrogacy as a way to fulfill their dreams. Here at Baby Steps Surrogacy Center, Inc., we are passionate about helping you have the child you’ve been longing for. Our goal is to match surrogate mothers with their intended parents so you can begin your surrogacy journey.
Ultimately, we aim to match healthy surrogate mothers with the right intended parents, stand by your side throughout the pregnancy, and work with you to develop an in-depth surrogacy contract that will protect all involved parties.
What Sets Us Apart from Other Surrogacy Agencies
Many agencies are founded by former surrogates or intended parents who have gone through the surrogacy process. That experience is helpful and emotionally powerful, but the owners of those agencies may not have the legal background to handle surrogacy and donor contracts, pre-birth orders, and second or stepparent adoptions to complete the process.
Those agencies also may not understand whether the surrogate’s health insurance will cover the surrogate pregnancy, private pay options if the surrogate’s insurance won’t pay, or catastrophic medical bill potentials. You could have a baby but end up with hundreds of thousands of dollars of unpaid medical bills if insurance and costs are not appropriately considered.
Many of these agencies might have only come in contact with a limited number of other professionals—often those they personally worked with during their own surrogacy journeys. Baby Steps Surrogacy Center, Inc., on the other hand, has worked with psychologists in the family law field for more than twenty years.
That means we can provide expert referrals and have developed referral relationships with leading fertility clinics and reproductive endocrinologists. After all, who wants to end up in a situation where your surrogate forms an inappropriate attachment to a baby she carries?
With Baby Steps Surrogacy Center, Inc., you can rest assured that trained professionals will conduct child abuse and neglect background investigations, criminal history investigations, and home visits with potential surrogates.
Guidance and care every step of the way.
caring for you during your surrogacy journey
It’s easy to feel overwhelmed by all the components of your surrogacy arrangement. But both the intended parents and surrogate mother should feel confident that their surrogacy process will be as stress-free as possible.
Your surrogacy professional will understand how difficult and emotional this time in your life is. That is why we are always available to answer questions and provide you with the resources you need to ease your mind throughout your surrogacy journey.
A labor of love
Baby Steps Surrogacy Center, Inc. is an international surrogacy agency headquartered in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. We match heterosexual and LGBTQ+ intended parents with surrogate mothers, egg donors, and sperm donors to help families realize their dreams of becoming parents or facilitate surrogate mothers’ desire to help others.
Founded by Lisa Marie Vari, a highly regarded family law attorney in Pennsylvania, our team of surrogacy and third-party reproduction experts understands the many obstacles those seeking to become parents face.
Since 1998, Lisa Vari and team have assisted intended parents and surrogates with gestational surrogacy contracts, traditional surrogacy contracts, egg and sperm donation contracts, pre-birth orders, and second parent and stepparent adoptions. Our team provides referrals to fertility clinics and reproductive endocrinologists and recommendations for psychologists and social workers in the fertility field.
Giving the Gift of a Child
If you are considering becoming a surrogate mother for a family who is longing for a child of their own, you need to be prepared for several things before you move forward.
Although you may be ready to fulfill another family’s dreams, there are a couple of different types of surrogacy that you’ll be able to choose from and many qualifications you will need to meet before you can be matched with the family you’ll be working with.
By becoming a surrogate mother, you are giving a wonderful and lifelong gift to a family in need. To learn more about the different surrogacy options available to you and the requirements for becoming a surrogate mother at Baby Steps Surrogacy Center, Inc., speak with us today.
Completing Your Family
Same-sex couples, women who are unable to conceive or carry a baby safely, and couples who have been unsuccessful in becoming pregnant due to fertility issues may be considering surrogacy as an option for having the baby they’ve always wanted.
There is much to consider before you make the decision to go through surrogacy. We discuss many of those considerations in our FAQ below.
Egg and Sperm Donation
Intended parents who have fertility issues will often turn to surrogacy. Whether it is the intended mother who doesn’t have viable eggs or the intended father who has low-quality sperm, Baby Steps Surrogacy Center, Inc. can help these couples have a child of their own through egg, sperm, or embryo donation.
Although one of you may not be biologically related to your baby when you use donor eggs or sperm, it’s important that you always keep the end goal in mind: having a baby. Raising your baby—not providing the genetic makeup—makes you his or her parent.
Baby Steps Surrogacy Center, Inc. will help you review the profiles of the donors in question so you can choose the right sperm or egg donor for your future baby.If you have further questions about egg or sperm donation, reach out to Baby Steps Surrogacy Center, Inc. as soon as possible.
A Note from Our Founder
“I have seen how some agencies almost prey on the emotions of couples seeking to become families and do not steer them down the correct path with knowledge and compassion. Some, unfortunately, are not looking out for intended parents, who are often feeling vulnerable during this process. I am compassionate but also use my analytical skills as a lawyer to find the best options for a couple who has likely suffered much devastation and loss on their road to conception.”
– Lisa Vari, Baby Steps founder
Lifelong Journeys BeginWith Baby Steps
Surrogacy Laws by State
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Intended parents are likely considering surrogacy because they have endured the pain of the inability to carry a child to term. During the last few years, you probably have attended more doctor appointments and endured more testing and needles than most people deal with in a lifetime.
But with all of your loss and sadness, you remain resolved and look to the future with great expectation and hope that surrogacy may be the way to add a beautiful baby to your family—a perfect rainbow baby who follows the many storms you have endured.
At Baby Steps Surrogacy Center, Inc., we are passionate about every aspect of pregnancy. We understand that families who are unable to conceive have been dealing with enormous hardships—whether that takes the form of struggles with fertility or the loss of a child at any point in a pregnancy.
Whether you’re a potential surrogate who is ready to give a family the ultimate gift or a family who has longed for a baby for years, our staff members will be by your side every step of the way through your surrogacy journey.
The surrogacy process is complicated, but Baby Steps Surrogacy Center, Inc. can make it simple. We’re here to answer all of your questions quickly and thoroughly. For a sample of questions we often receive, see below. For the answers to all of your questions, reach out to us today.
What is a surrogacy arrangement?
A surrogacy arrangement is when couples or individuals who are unable to conceive a child of their own work with a woman who is capable of carrying a child to have the baby they’ve always dreamed of. The woman carrying the child will be referred to as the surrogate mother, while the person or couple who enlisted the help of the surrogate will be referred to as the intended parent or parents.
Will I be biologically related to the baby?
That depends on the type of surrogacy arrangement you enter into. There are two main types of surrogacy: traditional and gestational. In a traditional surrogacy agreement, the surrogate mother will use one of her own eggs and the sperm of either the intended father or a sperm donor to become pregnant. In this case, the surrogate mother will be the biological mother of the baby.
A gestational surrogacy is when the surrogate mother goes through the in vitro fertilization process and is impregnated with a fertilized embryo of the intended mother’s egg or a donor egg and the intended father’s sperm or donor sperm. If the intended parents’ egg and sperm are used, then the baby born to the surrogate mother will be biologically related to them, despite being carried by the surrogate mother.
How does the surrogacy process work?
The surrogacy process will vary a bit between surrogate mothers and intended parents. For intended parents, your surrogacy journey begins by educating yourself about everything you need to know about surrogacy. After you’ve chosen to work with Baby Steps, we will begin with your initial intake and discuss your needs in terms of your surrogate mother.
Once you choose your surrogate mother, we will help you find a fertility clinic, go over the insurance aspects of the process, and begin to formulate your surrogacy contract. Then, your surrogate mother will undergo her examinations and medical procedures to become pregnant.
During this part of the process, we will finalize your legal agreements. When your surrogate mother becomes pregnant, we will be by your side every step of the way to offer guidance and support.
For surrogate mothers, the process is similar, except you’ll begin by undergoing an evaluation, where we will ask you questions to determine whether you meet the criteria for becoming a surrogate. If you do, you can expect a call back from a compassionate surrogacy professional.
At your initial intake, we will go over your medical history, obtain appropriate medical documentation, and discuss which form of surrogacy you are interested in. From there, we will match you with your intended parents. The rest of your surrogacy journey will be very similar to that of the intended parents.
What are some of the factors I should consider before choosing surrogacy?
Many couples and individuals find that the emotional aspects of surrogacy can be a lot to bear. You might feel grateful and thankful for your surrogate mother one moment, and in the next moment, you may feel grief that you are unable to carry the child on your own.
This rollercoaster of emotions is to be expected in surrogacy, and you should prepare yourself to the best of your ability. Your surrogacy professional will be available to help you through these emotions and provide you with resources like surrogacy support groups to ease the burden.
Is a surrogate mother compensated?
Generally speaking, the surrogate mother will be provided with a base compensation rate. The amount given will be used to provide healthy food, maternity clothes, and other necessities that will allow her to have a healthy pregnancy.
The intended parents may be responsible for covering the costs of prenatal care, labor, and delivery that the health insurance provider will not cover. This might include the costs of in vitro fertilization and other medical procedures necessary for a successful pregnancy.
The surrogate mother may be able to obtain other financial benefits if she is willing to provide breast milk for the baby after birth, if she becomes pregnant with multiples, or if she requires bed rest at any point during her pregnancy. Each of the financial components of your surrogacy agreement will be addressed before you sign your surrogacy contract.
How is parentage established in a surrogacy agreement?
Our agency will help enact a pre-birth order that will allow the intended parents to be named as the parents on the birth certificate and any other certified birth records once all of the appropriate paperwork has been filed.
This must be completed within several months of the child’s birth; otherwise, the surrogate mother may be listed on the baby’s birth certificate. With Baby Steps Surrogacy Center, Inc., you can rest easier knowing that we’ll be by your side every step of the way so important deadlines like these aren’t missed.
What are the components of a surrogacy contract?
There are a number of aspects of a surrogacy contract, and each one will be written to match the unique needs of your family and the surrogate mother. Apart from including information about the pre-birth order and financial aspects, we will need to address every possible scenario that may arise so there is a plan of action if there are any surprise situations.
For instance, we will want to address what will happen if either of the intended parents passes away. Other details of your surrogacy contract might include healthy lifestyle guidelines, such as not smoking or eating a healthy diet, and a birthing agreement that will discuss whether the intended parents will be present at prenatal appointments and the birth of the baby. Our surrogacy contracts are always tailored to meet the needs of everyone involved in the surrogacy journey.
Contact Baby Steps Surrogacy Center, Inc. Today
You can be certain that you will receive honest and informed advice from the team at Baby Steps Surrogacy Center, Inc. Contact us today. Give us a call at 412-884-2229 or select one of the contact options at the top of the page to schedule your first appointment with our team.