How Much Does Surrogacy Cost in New York and New Jersey?
Perhaps the most common question intended parents ask is, “How much is surrogacy in New York or New Jersey?” Concern regarding the price of surrogacy is understandable given that many considering this option have already spent years and many thousands of dollars pursuing medical treatments.
While there is no single, average cost of surrogacy in New York or New Jersey, it is useful to understand the services you’ll be paying for in connection with any surrogacy arrangement. If you are working with a surrogacy matching program, they will coordinate most of the required services and provide you with cost estimates for those service providers. If you are pursuing the surrogacy process without the assistance of a matching program, you’ll be contracting directly with those providers. The fees charged will vary depending on the intended parents’ and surrogate’s specific circumstances and the location where the services will be provided. Finally, as you likely know, any fees or expenses incurred by the surrogate in connection with the surrogacy are paid by the intended parents. In short, the overall cost of surrogacy will, in large part, be determined by the professionals you hire.
To learn more about the cost of gestational surrogacy in NJ and the cost of surrogacy in NY you can call one of our surrogacy attorneys and we will provide you with the estimated cost for our legal fees, what services are included in those fees, and what other services you’ll need in connection with your plan. You can reach us at 888-962-3001.
In the meantime, we’ve provided you with some additional information below as to what kind of surrogacy expenses you can expect to pay in connection with your family-building efforts.
Surrogacy arrangements taking place in New York are far less expensive than in other states because New York surrogates may not be compensated and matching programs are prohibited from receiving a fee if the surrogate gives birth in New York. Although surrogate compensation is prohibited, surrogates can receive payment of their living expenses for the limited time period that would be allowed in a New York private domestic infant adoption. Because of these restrictions, the surrogacy arrangements taking place in New York are typically limited to those where the surrogate is a close friend or family member of the intended parents and she is helping them out of love and compassion.
Although New Jersey surrogates are also not permitted to receive compensation, unlike in New York, they may receive payment of their living expenses throughout the entire pregnancy and during their postpartum recovery period. Because the amount paid to the surrogate is tied to her reasonable living expenses, the amount she receives varies depending on her circumstances and actual expenses. Because matching programs are not prohibited from receiving a fee, some intended parents may choose to hire such a program to assist them in their search for a surrogate and in coordinating the necessary services. The fees charged by matching programs vary, so you’ll need to reach out to the individual programs to obtain information as to their fees and services.
Whether you are pursuing a surrogacy arrangement in New York or New Jersey, surrogacy expenses are highly regulated and intended parents should always work with an attorney to ensure compliance with those regulations.
The expenses typically paid on behalf of a surrogate include — but may not be limited to — the following:
- Medical expenses associated with: the embryo transfer procedure (including required medications, examinations, testing, and laboratory work); prenatal care; and hospital delivery
- Vitamins and maternity clothing
- Travel expenses to and from appointments related to the surrogacy plan
- “Reasonable” living expenses, such as food, housing, utilities (the permissible payment period varies between New York and New Jersey)
- Surrogacy-related counseling
- Surrogacy-related legal fees
- Cost of any recommended supplemental medical insurance policy
- Cost of surrogate’s life insurance policy and/or short-term disability insurance
The cost of gestational surrogacy in NJ and NY will be detailed in the surrogacy contract or memorandum of understanding you sign with the surrogate to ensure that the anticipated expenses are clear and that any payments comply with legal restrictions.
Because surrogacy is a complex medical procedure, you will need to work with a team of physicians and other professionals to achieve a healthy pregnancy and ensure that the process proceeds smoothly. In the absence of medical insurance coverage for a particular medical procedure, you will bear the responsibility for paying these expenses. In every surrogacy arrangement, the surrogate should undergo a comprehensive assessment, including a physical evaluation, to determine whether she can carry and sustain a healthy pregnancy. She will also need to undergo a psychological evaluation to determine whether she has the mental and emotional capacity to carry and relinquish a child to another person. Intended parents are also often required to undergo mental health counseling, including a joint counseling session with the surrogate and her spouse or intimate partner, to ensure that everyone is prepared for the journey ahead.
The professionals you should expect to hire for this process include:
- IVF physician and associated professionals at the IVF clinic
- Mental health professional
- Surrogate’s obstetrician
- Professionals at delivery hospital
- Surrogacy attorneys for you and the surrogate (more on that below)
Of course, if you choose to work with a surrogacy matching program, they will charge a fee for their services. As noted above, the overall cost of surrogacy will be determined by which professionals you hire. Make sure to do your homework before committing to a professional to ensure that their services are within your price expectations.
Please note that, although you are paying the surrogate’s legal fees and for her prenatal care and delivery, the professionals providing those services work for the surrogate and their duty of loyalty is to her alone.
The intended parents pay the cost of the legal services provided to them and to the surrogate in connection with a surrogacy arrangement. A detailed agreement, whether it’s an enforceable New Jersey contract or an unenforceable New York memorandum of understanding, is essential to ensuring that everyone has thought through all aspects of the arrangement and that their responsibilities and expectations are clear. You will need a surrogacy attorney to complete this legal process. Even though the intended parents and surrogate are working collaboratively toward the same goal, and no one wants to incur added surrogacy costs, having separate legal counsel is essential to the integrity of the process.
Rumbold & Seidelman can help by drafting either the New Jersey surrogacy contract or the New York memorandum of understanding. Some of the issues addressed in these documents include:
- an outline of each party’s rights and responsibilities
- the risks each party is incurring (financial, legal and medical)
- financial responsibility for expenses
- insurance coverage for the pregnancy and delivery
- expectations regarding the authority to make medical decisions affecting the surrogate and child
- expectations regarding contact and communication during the pregnancy and after the baby is born
- And the anticipated legal procedure for establishing the parentage of intended parents.
For more information about the services we offer and our average surrogacy fees, please contact our law firm today.