I’ve been thinking about the surrogacy gone awry I wrote about last time. I think (as do some of those who commented) that the fault must like with the surrogacy agency that appears to have allowed people to go forward with a surrogacy arrangement without full counselling, etc. Of course, I don’t know this for sure, but it looks like it to me.
It isn’t the first time I’ve written about a case where all sorts of trouble was created by an incompetent or unscrupulous agency or individual working in the ART field. And I have no doubt that some shoddy or dishonest actions are motivated primarily by greed–after all, the surrogacy agency doesn’t get paid until the deal is made.
But here’s the thing there is rarely time to write about: I know a lot of people who work in this field and they are fine, ethical, honest, hard-working people. Sure, they make a living. But they’d never compromise a client’s interest to make more money. And they’re alert–maybe even hyper-alert–to potential conflicts of interest (as you might see if you represent both surrogates and IPs.)
I suspect it is like any other profession–there are some very bad lawyers. There are some dishonest lawyers. There are lawyers who put their own interests ahead of their client’s interests. But that’s not most lawyers. And it’s not most people who work in ART.
The problem, it seems to me, is two-fold. One is that when ART goes awry it creates situations that often become fodder for the press., which means we read about them or see them on TV or whatever. That gives you an exaggerated sense of how frequent misbehavior is.
The other piece is that ART is, in many ways, rather lightly regulated. That means there’s a lot of room for variation. Sometimes rather sloppy practices might be okay for a time–until suddenly something goes wrong.
I can imagine that many people who work in ART are not eager to see more regulation, but I wonder if it would actually help the legitimate, careful and responsible practitioners by making it a little bit easier to weed out the rest.