Growing your family through gestational surrogacy is a monumental emotional — and financial — journey. For most people, preparing financially for a gestational surrogacy journey requires years of planning and organization. However, like the journey itself, how each person saves for and affords their pursuit of parenthood is personal and unique.
How much does gestational surrogacy cost?
Typical gestational surrogacy costs can vary widely, with the average cost of a successful first-attempt gestational carrier (GC) pregnancy in the U.S. starting at $136,000 (including everything from the agency and legal fees to the in vitro fertilization (IVF) process. Because there are so many professionals involved at each step of the process — medical, legal, accounting, and social work — costs can quickly add up. In addition, costs include the care and attention the GC requires throughout pregnancy and childbirth, as well as the need for management of the entire journey from start to finish. Here’s a breakdown of the major costs associated with a gestational surrogacy journey:
- Agency fees: $20,000 – $40,000
- Gestational carrier compensation: $30,000 – $75,000
- Egg tissue donor fees: ~$16,000 – $20,000
- Legal fees: $15,000 – $20,000
- Medical and insurance expenses: $15,000 – $30,000. Some insurance plans will not cover a GC pregnancy.
- IVF and medication expenses: $8,000 – $30,000
- Fees for GC travel, maternity clothes, childcare costs, and other additional charges that may be reimbursed: $10,000 to $15,000
Costs can vary depending on the type of program you choose. Some programs are more comprehensive and include services such as legal services and escrow management. Other programs for intended parents are more a la carte — intended parents can select the services they require for their journey to customize a program. Which program is best for you depends on your specific needs for your journey and how much of the journey you want to manage yourself.
How to fund gestational surrogacy
Many companies offer family-forming benefits like Carrot, which can include anything from a set financial amount for reimbursement to specific coverage for elements of the journey, such as IVF cycles or creating embryos with donor eggs. Benefits may also cover broader family forming costs or adoption.
Get smart about tax deductions. Speak to a tax specialist about annual medical deductions, and plan your IVF and gestational surrogacy payments around the calendar year that works best for your deductions. You can typically deduct up to 10% of your adjusted gross income for medical expenses.
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