What is Surrogacy Timeline? | IVF Conceptions

Surrogacy is a life-changing journey involving intended parents and surrogate mothers coming together to bring a precious life into the world. However, many individuals embarking on this path often wonder about the timeline of the surrogacy process. How long does it take from the moment you decide to pursue surrogacy to the moment you hold your baby in your arms? Let’s explore the timeline of surrogacy and shed light on the various stages involved in this remarkable journey.

Understanding the Intended Parent Timeline

For intended parents, the surrogacy timeline can vary based on several factors. On average, the entire process usually spans between 18 to 24 months, from the first application to the birth of your baby. However, it is important to note that each step within this timeline has its own estimated duration. Let’s review the major milestones along the way:

  1. Free Consultation and Sign On (1 Week): To begin your surrogacy journey, it is advisable to schedule a complimentary consultation with a reputable surrogacy agency like Reproductive Possibilities. This week, you will meet with the agency team, including the founder or a member of the management team, and an Intended Parent Coordinator. They will guide you through the surrogacy process, answer your questions, and provide detailed information.
  • Matching a Replacement (10-14 Months): After signing on with a surrogacy agency, the process of finding a suitable surrogate begins. The duration of this phase depends on various factors, such as your criteria and the availability of compatible alternatives. If your preferences are more flexible, the matching process can be expedited, potentially taking around 10 to 14 months. However, if you have specific criteria or preferences, it may take longer to find the perfect match.
  • Drafting and Negotiating Contracts (2-3 Weeks): Once a match is found, the next step involves drafting and negotiating gestational carrier contracts. This important process ensures that all parties involved have a clear understanding of their rights, responsibilities, and expectations. Finalizing these contracts usually takes about 2 to 3 weeks.
  • Embryo Transfer Cycle (4-5 Weeks): After contracts are successfully negotiated and signed, the clinic can begin the embryo transfer cycle. At this stage, your surrogate will begin taking medications to prepare her body for the embryo transfer. Generally, the transition itself occurs within 4 to 5 weeks of starting your surrogate’s medication protocol.
  • Pregnancy and Childbirth (About 9 Months): If the first embryo transfer is successful, you can expect the incredible journey of pregnancy to begin. The average duration of pregnancy, whether through surrogacy or naturally, is about 9 months. So, if all goes well, you will welcome your baby into the world at the end of this period.
How long does the surrogacy process take?

Understanding the Surrogate Timeline

For women aspiring to be surrogate mothers, understanding the timeline of surrogacy is equally important. The duration of the surrogacy process for surrogates can also vary depending on several factors. On average, the timeline takes around 14 to 22 months, covering various stages from application to delivery. Let’s explore the main steps in the alternate timeline:

  1. Application and Initial Screening (1-3 Weeks): As a prospective candidate, you will need to complete the application process, which usually takes 1 to 3 weeks. This includes filling out forms and providing required information. Once your application is submitted, the agency will review it and schedule a full interview to further assess your suitability for surrogacy.
  • Gathering Information and Medical Records (3-6 Weeks): After the initial review, the agency will gather additional information from you, including medical records, forms, and background documents. This process usually takes about 3 to 6 weeks. The agency will also share your profile with intended parents who match your criteria to facilitate the matching process.
  • Matching with Intended Parents (2-4 Weeks): Once your profile has been shared with the intended parents, the agency aims to find the right match for you within 2 to 4 weeks. Matching involves assessing compatibility based on various factors, such as preferences, expectations, and personal values.
  • Embryo Transfer (6-8 Weeks): After the matching process, if the intended parents have viable embryos ready for transfer, medical procedures can move forward. Embryo transfer usually occurs within 6 to 8 weeks after the match. In the event that the first transfer is unsuccessful, subsequent transfers may require another 6 to 8 weeks to be scheduled.
  • Pregnancy and childbirth: Once the embryo transfer is successful, the surrogate mother begins the extraordinary journey of carrying the parents’ longed-for baby to term. The gestation period, as mentioned earlier, is approximately 9 months. At the end of this period, the surrogate mother gives birth, making the dreams of the intended parents come true.

More resources for Surrogacy Timeline:

Tips for a Positive Surrogacy Journey

Embarking on a surrogacy journey, whether as an intended parent or surrogate mother, can be a mix of emotions, challenges, and successes. To ensure a positive experience, it’s important to prepare yourself and seek support along the way. Here are some important tips for a positive surrogacy journey:

  1. Prepare: Take time to read, research, and ask questions. Familiarize yourself with other people’s stories, blogs, forums, and resources that provide insights into surrogacy. Understand the advisory and legal processes involved. Attend events where you can meet people at different stages of the journey. This will help you gain a comprehensive understanding of surrogacy.
  • Consult a Surrogacy Counselor: Seeking guidance from an experienced surrogacy counselor can be very helpful. They can provide emotional support, help you navigate the complexities of travel, and prepare you for the emotional challenges you may encounter on your journey.
  • Build a Support Network: Surround yourself with a strong support network that includes family, friends, and others with surrogacy experience. Connecting with individuals who understand and have gone through similar experiences can provide invaluable support and advice.\
  • Open Communication: Maintain open and honest communication with intended parents or surrogate mothers throughout the journey. Clear and transparent communication helps build trust, ensures everyone is on the same page, and minimizes misunderstandings or conflicts that may arise.
  • Seek Legal Advice: Consult a legal professional who specializes in surrogacy to ensure that all legal aspects are handled appropriately. This includes drafting surrogacy agreements, understanding parental rights, and navigating the legal processes of establishing parentage.
  • Self care: Prioritize self-care and well-being throughout the surrogacy journey. Take time to engage in activities that bring you joy, reduce stress, and help you maintain a positive mindset. Remember to address your physical, emotional, and mental needs to ensure a healthy and enjoyable experience.
  • Stay Informed: Keep yourself updated on the latest developments, legal regulations, and best practices in the field of surrogacy. This knowledge will empower you to make informed decisions and adapt to any changes that may occur along your journey.
  • Celebrate Milestones: Recognize and celebrate important milestones in the surrogacy journey. Whether it’s a successful embryo transfer, a positive medical test, or reaching each trimester of pregnancy, these milestones signify progress and bring hope and joy to all involved.

Factors Influencing the Duration of Surrogacy

The duration of the surrogacy process can vary depending on several factors, including:

– Legal requirements and processes in the parents’ intended jurisdiction

– Availability of suitable alternatives

– Medical reasons, such as the success of IVF procedures and surrogate pregnancy experience

what is the surrogacy timeline

More surrogacy guides:

How the Surrogacy Process Works- 7 Easy to Follow Surrogacy Steps

How Much Does Surrogacy Cost? Everything You Need to Know (in 2023)

How to Begin the Gestational Surrogacy Process? A step-by-step guide for Beginners

Commercial Surrogacy: Complete Guide, Costs, Process and Legality


Remember, every surrogacy journey is unique, and timelines and experiences may vary. By being prepared, seeking support, and maintaining a positive mindset, you can navigate the surrogacy timeline with confidence and create a memorable and rewarding journey for everyone involved.

Surrogacy is often a long and complicated process, with several legal and medical requirements. However, the process is worth it for parents looking to start or expand their families. It is very important to understand the timeline involved and seek appropriate support throughout the process.

If you want to learn more about IVF, Egg Donation, or surrogacy services around the world, check out the rest of our website at IVF Conceptions. We offer legally secure and affordable surrogacy consulting services for FREE.

FAQs about How Long Does the Surrogacy Process Take?

How long does the surrogacy process take?

The surrogacy process usually takes about 15 to 18 months from start to finish.

How long does IVF for surrogacy take?

The IVF process for surrogacy usually takes several weeks, including egg retrieval, fertilization, and embryo transfer.

Can surrogacy be completed in a shorter time frame?

The duration of the surrogacy process can be influenced by various factors. Although it is important to note that specific timelines may vary depending on individual circumstances and legal requirements.

Reference used:

8 Tips for a Positive Surrogacy Journey – Sarah Jefford

Surrogate Timeline: How Long Does the Surrogacy Process Take for Surrogates? (

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