Surrogate Compensation and Expenses

The surrogacy community is full of compassionate and selfless individuals who care deeply about family; but no matter how selfless these individuals are, surrogacy comes with a high price tag. If you’re looking to join the surrogacy community as either an Intended Parent or a Surrogate then it is important to be aware of the two forms of situations in terms of Surrogate payment: altruistic surrogacy and commercial surrogacy, more often referred to as non-compensated and compensated surrogacy.

Non-Compensated Surrogacy

Also known as altruistic surrogacy, non-compensated surrogacy is as straight-forward as it sounds; aside from medical bills and direct expenses associated with the pregnancy, the Surrogate is not paid anything in addition. Some of these direct expenses include:

  • Doctor visits and check-ups
  • Mileage to and from those doctor’s appointments
  • Prenatal vitamins and any foods related to special dietary needs for the fetus
  • Maternity clothing allowance
  • Childcare

Oftentimes, non-compensated surrogacies are carried out by a close friend or family member of the Intended Parent(s) who agrees to be the Surrogate. Being a Surrogate is already an incredibly selfless act, and agreeing to be one without additional compensation beyond medical expenses directly associated with the pregnancy takes that selflessness to another level. Even though there is no additional compensation, it is still important for all parties involved to still enter into a legal agreement, in part to ensure those medical bills do get paid by the Intended Parent, and also to ensure the Surrogate doesn’t change their mind and decide they do want additional compensation.

As mentioned, a good portion of altruistic surrogacies are carried out by friends or family of the Intended Parent(s), but not always. In many states (and countries outside of the US) compensated surrogacy is either illegal or has murky laws associated with it that could pose additional difficulties for Intended Parents. We’ll touch more on that below when discussing compensated surrogacy.

Compensated Surrogacy

We’ll start by addressing and clearing up a common surrogacy myth: Surrogates are not in it for the money! Individuals who choose to become Surrogates do it as an act of selflessness; sometimes, they are women who truly love being pregnant but either do not want another child themselves, or just want to help other Intended Parents because they are able to. Sometimes these Surrogates are friends or family members who aren’t thinking of how much they enjoy pregnancy, but are simply becoming a Surrogate out of love for their friend/family member. Regardless of the Surrogates motives, Simple Surrogacy thoroughly vets all of the Surrogates we work with, from mental health to physical health, to ensure that they are both able and suited to carry a baby to grow another’s family, and are not merely in search of a paycheck. We break down this and other surrogacy myths further in our blog post Six Myths About Surrogacy, Debunked.

So what exactly is compensated surrogacy? This is a common question because even non-compensated surrogacy seems like it’s actually compensated surrogacy, with all medical bills and expenses related to the pregnancy being paid for. But as stated above, there is no additional payment to the Surrogate beyond those expenses directly related to the pregnancy, namely a fee paid to the Surrogate for carrying the baby for its Intended Parent(s). All of the fees listed above under non-compensated surrogacies apply to compensated surrogacies as well, in addition to a $40,000 – $50,000 carrying fee paid to the Surrogate. Surrogate carrying fees can vary depending on the Surrogate and the type of surrogacy. First-time Surrogates typically receive about $5,000 less than experienced Surrogates, and a traditional surrogacy pays between $5,000-$10,000 more than a gestational surrogacy, on average. Other fees in a compensated surrogacy include:

  • A monthly stipend (different from a maternity clothing allowance)
  • Surrogate retreat
  • $15,000 multiples fee

These fees and others may vary depending upon the agency that is being used, as these are based off of Simple Surrogacy’s Surrogate fees policy. For a more in-depth list of specific fees, you may visit our Surrogate Compensation page.

Country and US State Laws

As surrogacy is a hotly debated topic across different states in the US, and indeed across countries around the world, it should come as no surprise that some US states and many countries have banned one form of surrogacy based on Surrogate payment when the pressure became too great to lift the all-out ban on surrogacy. 

Speaking strictly to the United States, compensated surrogacy is either illegal or there are laws in place that are tricky to work around in a number of states. Often, these same states have other statutes in place designed to make either becoming a Surrogate or an Intended Parent more difficult.

Similar to many US states, a number of countries around the world have laws in place to restrict surrogacy if it is not outright banned, with compensated surrogacy being one of the top legality/moral issues. In many of these cases, Intended Parents will seek Surrogates from surrogacy-friendly states within the US to help them grow their families. The Simple Surrogacy team has experience helping Intended Parents from over 20 countries grow their families through compensated surrogacy.

At Simple Surrogacy, we believe that all of our Surrogates are family and strive to provide them with the care they need for a successful pregnancy, beyond just basic services. While there are a number of arguments that have been made in regards to the morality of compensated surrogacy, our team’s personal experience in the surrogacy world allows us to vet and pair Intended Parents with their best-choice Surrogate and advise them so that each party’s rights are maintained. If you are interested in learning more about Surrogacy please contact the team at Simple Surrogacy by phone at 1-866-41-SURRO or online today!

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