How to estimate the real cost of surrogacy?
Pursuing parenthood through surrogacy may be an overwhelming and expensive process for intended parents and the surrogate mother cost can be a big concern for Intended Parents.
Before starting the surrogacy journey, you need to know that the surrogacy costs will largely depend on the type of surrogacy process you are pursuing, as well as the services you will need during the process. The cost of surrogacy will vary depending on your decisions.
- There are two types of surrogacy agreements: traditional surrogacy where the surrogate mother is genetically connected to the baby because her eggs are used; gestational surrogacy where the surrogate mother has no genetic link to the child as her eggs are not used, she acts just as a carrier. These two types of surrogacy journeys have different financial and legal implications that you should consider before making your decision.
- There are many different reasons for the decision to be a surrogate mother, such as financial reasons (more commercial surrogacy oriented), gratification of pregnancy and childbirth or getting a sense of self-worth and value for her community (altruistic surrogacy), this will make a difference in your surrogacy cost because the surrogate mother cost can vary significantly. You will have to choose between pursuing a commercial or altruistic surrogacy journey and this will impact in the final cost of surrogacy.
On the other hand, there are many other factors you should consider besides the economical ones, comprising surrogate and IPs personalities, country/state (surrogacy laws may be different between states, Intended Parents rights and obligations may vary and legal process will be different.), insurance coverage, willing to have an amniocentesis and other diagnostic testing to check for birth defects or other problems with the fetus, willingness to abort if there was an important medical problem with the fetus, electively reduce in the event of high order multiples and the list goes on and on. Although intended parents are eager to get started on their surrogacy journey, it´s important to go through all these topics to ensure a match based on both party’s desires and needs.
Surrogacy professionals can support you during the whole surrogacy, from the psychological and medical screener of the surrogate to the birth of the kid. As a prospective intended parent, it will be up to you to choose the surrogacy specialist you feel most comfortable dealing with (think about what kind of specialists you will for your process to estimate your surrogacy cost)
The team of surrogacy/fertility specialists that will support intended parents during the process can include a surrogacy consultant, a fertility physician and a family lawyer from the state/city where the surrogate mother is going to have the baby. The cost of surrogacy will vary based on the fees of these professionals.
The family lawyer is a key part of this process because you need to know the local regulation and also because he/she will draft the legal contracts that includes all the on monetary reimbursement, Intended parents and surrogate’s expectations, number of embryos should be transferred, what happens if bed rest is recommended to the surrogate mother by her doctor and more.
How much does surrogacy cost?
When you think about the cost of surrogacy, you should consider:
- Surrogate mother reimbursement:
- Pre pregnancy surrogate mother expenses, including but not limited to travel expenses to the fertility clinic chosen by the intended parents.
- Surrogate mother expenses during the pregnancy in connection with the surrogacy
- Additional surrogate mother costs like C-section, multiple birth or bed rest.
- Surrogacy agency fees;
- Psychological screening and monitoring;
- Medical screener for the intended parents and surrogate mother;
- Medication for IVF cycle (this can change depending on the number of cycles);
- Legal representation for both parties (intended parents and surrogate);
- Post birth legal requirements depending on the country, like DNA testing to ensure that the baby is genetically related to the intended parents for example.
- If an egg donor is needed in the surrogacy journey, all the costs associated with the egg donation need to be consider.
- Agency fees (if used to find egg donor);
- Egg retrieval procedure (clinic fees, medication,…);
- Medical and psychological evaluation;
- Egg donor’s reimbursements;
- Legal representation of both parties (intended parents and egg donor).
Each surrogate can have different arrangements with their IPs but most fall under three categories. 1) Receipts submitted are reimbursed within 24 or 48 hours; 2) monthly reimbursements given at the end of each month, 3) basic monthly allowance. Each surrogacy agreement results in different expenses that are accepted as well, however there are common things that are included in this kind of agreements.
How to estimate the surrogate mother cost?
In general, the surrogate mother cost that Intended Parents will reimburse to the Gestational Carrier for the expenses incurred by the surrogate during the pregnancy in connection with the surrogacy are:
- Medical, hospitalization, pharmaceutical and laboratory expenses incurred by the Gestational Carrier as a result of the Transfer, Pregnancy or Birth not covered by her Health Insurance Plan.
- One year life insurance.
- Money spent on the surrogate’s groceries, prepared food and meals for her own consumption which would supplement her diet, including some vitamins and supplements required to maintain a healthy pregnancy.
- Reasonable expenses incurred for travel at the request of the Intended Parents or made necessary for the performance of her obligations during the surrogacy journey, including reasonable transportation costs, hotel costs and/or meal costs.
- Clothing to be worn by the surrogate during or immediately after the Pregnancy.
- Reasonable costs of housekeeping if such tasks are typically performed by the surrogate mother and she is unable to perform such tasks as a result of the pregnancy.
- Reasonable amount for massage and acupuncture during the pregnancy if so recommended by her physician.
- Reasonable childcare costs for any time that the Gestational Carrier must hire childcare in order to fulfill her duties if she requires rest during the Pregnancy.
- Finally, in order to ensure that the Gestational Carrier has an opportunity to rest and to provide her with all things necessary in order to ensure a full and complete recuperation, all related costs incurred by the surrogate mother during the period of recuperation after the birth of the child. Normally the period end between four and six weeks after the delivery.
After reading this article, perhaps you think the surrogate mother cost is quite high, however when you consider the surrogate’s commitment and all things that she has to do, for as long as she has to do it (medical appointments, medication, her relationship with the intended parents, the impact on her life, the effects on her job, her family and friends, and her marriage), we can understand that this act is priceless.
For more information regarding surrogacy costs visit the following video and learn more about surrogate mother cost and the cost of surrogacy.