Many intended parents struggle through months and even years of expensive infertility treatments before deciding to try another family-building process. If they’re considering surrogacy, one of the first questions they ask is, “How much does surrogacy cost?”
Surrogacy, like many infertility treatments and family-building processes, can be expensive. The process is legally and medically complicated, and the requirement of several different professionals can quickly lead to surrogacy costs that may seem outrageous to someone with no understanding of how this family-building path works.
Before you decide on surrogacy as an intended parent, it’s important to fully understand the average cost of surrogacy in North Carolina and throughout the United States — and the different services included in that surrogacy price. Only then can you determine whether this is the right path for you.
The surrogacy attorneys at the Parker Herring Law Group PLLC can always discuss the legal surrogacy costs, as well as explain the different surrogacy fees you may find with other surrogacy professionals. To learn more, please contact us at 919-821-1860.
To help you understand the average cost of surrogacy, we’ve broken down some of the different surrogacy expenses you can expect in this article.
- ScreeningBefore either an intended parent or prospective surrogate can start the surrogacy process, they must be medically and psychologically cleared by a professional. This screening makes sure that a person is ready for the challenges and rewards of the surrogacy process, and that this is really the right path for their personal goals and needs.This screening must be completed by an appropriate professional, and this is one of the first surrogacy costs you can expect in North Carolina. You will be responsible for the surrogate’s screening costs as an intended parent.
- MatchingUnless you have already identified a surrogate for your family-building process, you will need to spend some surrogacy money to find a surrogate. How much you will spend on this will be determined by a few factors.If you choose to work with a surrogacy agency to find a surrogate, you will need to pay an agency fee for their services (which also include several of the surrogacy expenses listed below). Your overall surrogacy cost may be more expensive, but you will have the peace of mind in knowing that you have obtained all of the services you need to complete your surrogacy safely and legally.
If you do not choose to work with an agency, you will need to pay surrogacy fees to find a surrogate on your own. This will involve advertising and marketing (like creating an intended parent profile and posting on surrogacy classifieds, etc.) You will also run the risk of matching with a surrogate who has not yet been screened and, after paying her screening fees, discovering that she is not eligible to become a surrogate. It’s important that someone do a complete criminal history screening on any potential surrogate and her husband that you are considering working with. We also recommend that you read any potential surrogate and spouse’s social media before you make a final decision.
It’s hard to say whether or not your average cost of surrogacy will increase if you find a surrogate independently, but it’s a good idea to at least speak with a matching professional to learn more about what responsibilities you would have to take on yourself if you do. There is a small percentage of men and women who have a family member or friend that can serve as a surrogate, and that can cut the costs dramatically. If you use a surrogate that is someone you know personally or are related to, you may receive a significant savings because familial and friends who serve as surrogates often are not motivated by money as they are motivated by helping someone they know create a family. But, just because you know your surrogate personally does not eliminate the need for a carefully drafted contract.
- Education, Counseling and SupportSurrogacy is a challenging journey for both intended parents and surrogates, and it’s important that you have the support and counseling you need to have a successful family-building journey. While these services are typically a small part of your overall costs of surrogacy, they are vital for you and your surrogate.Many surrogacy agencies and medical professionals have trained social workers on their staff, and these counseling services may be included in your overall surrogacy price. However, if you complete an independent surrogacy, know that you will likely need to counsel your surrogate on your own, or hire another professional for these services at an additional cost. Our law firm has relationships with surrogacy counselors and will be happy to make those recommendations to you.
- Medical ProceduresWhichever kind of surrogacy you choose — gestational or traditional — there are necessary medical procedures that must take place. As intended parents, you will be responsible for the costs of these procedures, including your surrogate’s medical care and hospital stay when she is pregnant.Sometimes, intended parents wonder: How does the traditional surrogacy cost compare to the gestational surrogacy cost?
The cost of traditional surrogacy may be less than that of gestational surrogacy, because it may require fewer medical procedures. However, there are very few fertility clinics who are comfortable with traditional surrogacy because of the legal risks. A gestational surrogacy, on the other hand, requires an IVF process, including obtaining any necessary donor gametes, and an embryo transfer in a medical clinic. While traditional surrogacy may be easier medically, it can be much more complicated legally — which could substantially increase your legal surrogacy costs in North Carolina.
How much these medical procedures add to your surrogacy costs will also be determined by your surrogate’s insurance policy (discussed in more detail below).
- Surrogate Compensation and InsuranceAnother big question that people ask when it comes to the costs of surrogacy in North Carolina is, “How much does a surrogate cost?”In North Carolina, surrogates have the right to receive surrogate compensation, should they wish to complete a compensated surrogacy. How much it costs for a surrogate mother, in regards to surrogate compensation, will be determined by her level of surrogacy experience and her personal compensation requirements. The average surrogate compensation starts around $25,000, and we generally see a range from $20,000 to $30,000.
You may also need to spend extra surrogacy expenses on additional insurance if your surrogate’s personal insurance excludes surrogate pregnancies from coverage. An additional insurance policy can increase your overall price of surrogacy in North Carolina. However, medical insurance is one of the most important parts of the surrogacy plan. Some intended parents choose to consult with an insurance provider and obtain backup insurance.
- Legal ServicesYour final surrogacy cost will come in the form of your legal surrogacy expenses. Surrogacy cannot be completed without the assistance of an experienced surrogacy lawyer, and the attorneys at the Parker Herring Law Group PLLC can always help you complete the legal steps of your North Carolina surrogacy.When you work with our law firm, you will be provided a range of legal services under one flat-rate surrogacy cost. These services will include:
- Drafting and negotiating a surrogacy contract
- Hiring the services of an attorney to advise the surrogacy and if necessary negotiate terms
- Arranging for pre-birth orders to establish parentage
- Creating any necessary donor contracts
- Providing legal guidance and assistance
To learn more about the cost of surrogacy with our law firm and the services we provide, please contact us today at 919-821-1860. We recommend that you first find a surrogate candidate and she be accepted as a possible surrogate medically and psychologically before you retain an attorney to draft the surrogacy contract. The Parker Herring Law Group PLLC always recommends and assists you in hiring an attorney for the surrogate to review the contract and to negotiate any terms. Usually, this cost is $750 to $1,200.
Determining Your Overall Price of Surrogacy in North Carolina
Understanding the different surrogacy expenses that go into your North Carolina surrogacy cost is the first step to creating a surrogacy budget that is right for you. But, exactly how expensive is surrogacy, and what can you expect to pay when you start this family-building process?
There are several factors that will influence your overall cost of surrogacy in North Carolina:
- Your Surrogacy Goals and Preferences: You will want to create a plan for your surrogacy that addresses all of your personal wants and needs during this family-building process. For example, if you want professional guidance through every step of your surrogacy, you may wish to work with a surrogacy agency — whose professional fees will likely increase your overall surrogacy cost.
- The Type of Surrogacy You Choose: By nature, a commercial surrogacy will be more expensive for intended parents than an altruistic surrogacy will be. You may also save money on a traditional surrogacy in comparison to a gestational surrogacy, although it is very rare to find a fertility clinic that will work with you on a traditional surrogacy. Generally, fertility clinics wish that you and the surrogate have no genetic relationship with the child that she is carrying. You should always consider the pros and cons of each process to determine which is really right for you.
- The Professionals You Work With: As mentioned, there will be different surrogacy expenses in an agency-assisted surrogacy than an independent surrogacy. Intended parents should research and interview prospective surrogacy professionals to ensure the services offered match up with the organization’s price.
- How Much Experience a Surrogate Has: Generally, if you work with a first-time surrogate, you will pay less in surrogate compensation than if you choose to work with a woman who has already successfully been a surrogate.
As you set a budget for your surrogacy costs, you should speak with a financial advisor, as well as your surrogacy professionals, to determine what services fit into your budget and how you can afford this family-building process. Basically, you should note that these are the major costs in a surrogacy arrangement:
- Surrogate compensation for the service of being pregnant. In 2017, our law firm saw most surrogates receiving compensation in the average of $25,000.
- Attorney compensation for legal representation. In 2017, most of the surrogate contracts and pre-birth orders cost our clients in the $8,000 to $9,000 range.
- Medical costs for both the creation of the embryos and the OB-GYN costs for the pregnancy.
At the Parker Herring Law Group PLLC, our adoption attorneys will always be transparent regarding our surrogacy costs when you work with our law firm. Contact us today to learn more about our legal fee structure.