The average cost of a surrogacy pregnancy in the U.S. can range anywhere from $125,000 and upwards, depending on whether the intended parents have created embryos. For all intended parents wondering how expensive gestational surrogacy is, it’s important to keep in mind that the cost of gestational surrogacy depends on many factors, including creating the embryos (medical IVF expenses, donor fees and expenses, if applicable, professional fees, and pharmaceutical expenses) and surrogacy journey costs (surrogacy program costs, gestational surrogate fees, lawyer and other and professional’s fees, IVF medical fees to screen the gestational surrogate, cycle and then transfer the embryo to the gestational surrogate, out-of-pocket medical expenses, insurance expenses, and newborn costs).
Creating an embryo can add $30,000-$50,000 overall and using an egg donor can add another $20,000-30,000. While some intended parents’ insurance policies may cover IVF fees, most will not, particularly fees and costs related to a surrogate. There is no doubt that a surrogacy journey is expensive. A gestational surrogate expects to receive her base amount compensation and not go “into the hole” for any of her expenses related to the journey. These amounts can be higher for an experienced surrogate or for a surrogate carrying twins.
While it can be hard to estimate total expenses, in order to make a gestational surrogate match that is respectful of your budget, we will ask you the following questions in your New Client Questionnaire. Note that your answers remain strictly confidential. The attorney/client privilege of confidentiality is one of the benefits of working with a law firm.
Here are just some preferences about your surrogate match that you will want to consider. Do you want to wait for us to find a GC candidate who has health insurance that is surrogacy-friendly or are you willing to purchase a policy that covers surrogacy? Note that even if a GC candidate’s policy is surrogacy-friendly today, there is no guarantee that it will stay that way calendar year to calendar year. All policies are reviewed yearly. Sometimes, an employer will switch carriers and the new policy is no longer surrogacy-friendly, or the policy terms change in a new calendar year to explicitly exclude medical expenses related to a surrogacy journey. Some policies have large annual deductibles, and oftentimes a journey will span two calendar years. Some of the policies you can purchase have zero dollar deductibles and no co-pays, so the out-of-pocket difference between a purchased insurance policy and a surrogate’s employer policy is not quite as large as it first appears.
Are you open to all GC candidates who meet your IVF clinic requirements or should we be looking only for GC candidates who are stay-at-home moms, who have modest incomes, or who have short-term disability policies? If a surrogate is put on doctor-ordered bedrest, she may be able to work from home, but also may need to take off from work if she cannot work from home. In this case, the intended parents would be responsible for work lost wages until she is medically cleared to return to work.
If you are an international client, we need to think in advance about how your newborn will be covered. So, we will ask in our New Client Questionnaire: Do you have a private insurance policy, or an insurance policy through your company, that covers you while you are traveling in the US? This is the easiest way to expand to a policy that will also cover your newborn.
Are you at the top of your budget? If yes, you may prefer that we be careful in our matching process so that we select a GC candidate who has minimal travel costs to the IVF clinic, who has suitable health insurance for a journey, and who has minimal work lost wages. This can add to your wait for a match, but it is important toward reducing your overall costs. If you are budget conscious, then trying for twins is often not the best way to save money because the risk of medical complications (which can add to overall cost) increases — both during the pregnancy and upon delivery, which could be pre-term. Very few surrogates are hoping to be matched to an intended parent looking for a twin pregnancy due to the possibility of medical risks. At the same time, all of our surrogates agree to carry identical twins in the rare instance that an embryo splits into two if deemed safe to carry.
Many intended parents are relieved that there are several options available to them to create a more affordable surrogacy journey.
Although there are no tax credits for becoming parents through surrogacy, there are many other ways to receive financial help.
(More are on the way for other intended parents!)
**Only one discount applies**
Many lenders specialize in providing loans to couples looking for gestational surrogacy financing, but surrogacy loan rates can vary. Consider:
Some companies to contact for fertility-specific financing loans are:
(Note: These are NOT CFC affiliated companies and we cannot vouch for them.)
Community fundraising events are an excellent way for intended parents to fund their surrogacy journeys. Some fundraising options include:
As an intended parent, you may earn free funds for your surrogacy through surrogate and fertility grant programs. Each of the following programs has different application requirements, so it’s essential to fully research each option to determine which is best. (Note: These are NOT CFC grants and we cannot vouch for them.)
Since 2001, Creative Family Connections has been helping intended parents make their dream of starting a family or expanding their family a reality. As both a surrogacy agency and law firm, we have the knowledge and expertise to refer you to the best financial resources to meet your needs. The guidance you receive can help you save money throughout the surrogacy journey.
Contact CFC today to get started, learn more about surrogacy payments, and the average cost of a surrogacy journey at our agency.