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Fertility Costs for Dads-to-Be

LGBTQ parents with baby

Cost Considerations for Surrogacy

As you begin to think about building your family and becoming a dad, one of the first questions that comes up is financing — how much is this going to cost? Is your insurance going to cover this, and if not, what resources are there to tap into? At Gay Parents To Be and Illume Fertility, we understand that this is a big hurdle for many hopeful dads. Our team is here to help you overcome it.

After your initial consultation, your dedicated Insurance and Billing Advocate will reach out to you to do a benefits check, discuss your personal coverage, and explain the financial plans that we offer. Although insurance coverage and the cost of each journey varies from patient to patient, below, you will find a resource guide complete with a list of FAQs to help you understand the costs.

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Understanding Surrogacy Costs

Surrogacy costs can be broken down into four major categories: IVF clinic costs, surrogacy agency and legal fees, and egg donor & surrogate compensation.

Surrogacy costs can vary depending on the clinic and surrogacy agency you use, your specific requirements for an egg donor and gestational carrier, and the part of the country in which you live.

Because of this, the "ballpark estimate" for total surrogacy costs varies greatly, but the average cost of surrogacy in the United States is around $140,000.You may see cheaper alternatives advertised in other countries, but it is not possible to guarantee that your rights, your surrogate's rights, and the rights of your future child will be equally protected.

The total cost of surrogacy includes:

  • IVF clinic costs
  • Egg donor compensation
  • Gestational carrier compensation
  • Surrogacy agency feeds
  • Legal fees (both for you and the gestational carrier)
  • Medications for egg donor and gestational carrier
  • Travel costs for intended parents and gestational carrier
  • Pregnancy expenses (i.e. maternity clothes and prenatal vitamins, etc.)
  • Health insurance for gestational carrier

Keep scrolling for information and cost estimates on each piece of your surrogacy journey.

Surrogacy Cost Breakdown

The costs for surrogacy can be divided into four "buckets" -- the costs that intended parents will pay to their IVF Clinic, their Agency or Reproductive Attorney, the Egg Donor Compensation and the Gestational Carrier Compensation

Asset 45-1

IVF Clinic Costs

$29,000 to $50,000
Asset 40

Egg Donor Compensation

$6,000 to $15,000
Asset 63

Surrogate Compensation

$25,000 to $76,000
Asset 41

Agency & Legal Fees

$22,000 to $50,000

agency fees.

$3,000 to $16,500

legal fees.

IVF Clinic Costs

If you're doing research on IVF clinics and associated costs, you may notice that there seems to be a broad range - this is normal! Clinic costs vary based on your personal fertility journey, as well as your benefits and insurance coverage. If you're planning out your surrogacy budget, the IVF clinic costs typically range from $29,000 - $50,000.

Your fertility clinic and it's staff will help you with many steps during your surrogacy journey, including:

Many clinics now offer versions of a guarantee plan, a higher cost may cover multiple or unlimited embryo transfers. For some dads-to-be, this option offers financial security when budgeting for surrogacy.

If you're worried about the IVF costs for a surrogacy journey, learn more about fertility insurance for the LGBTQ community and family building grants here.

IVF Costs for Surrogacy

Egg Donor Compensation

Egg donors are typically compensated between $6,000 and $15,000. This might seem like a lot of money, but it's important to remember that your donor plays an important role in your family building journey! 

In order to pass egg donor screening, a donor has to complete the following tests:

  • Medical health screening (physical exam, lab testing)
  • Recessive genetic disease screening
  • Comprehensive lifestyle evaluation
  • Mental health evaluation
  • Screening for infectious diseases, drugs, and alcohol
  • Fertility tests including AMH FSH levels

Choosing a donor from your clinic's in-house donor pool (if available) can typically offer a lower-cost donor option. For dads with specific criteria for their egg donor (graduate degree, specific height, hair or eye color) egg donor agencies may provide more choices. However, keep in mind that working with an egg donor agency will have associated fees.

Egg Donor Considerations

Surrogate Compensation

Surrogate compensation can range from $25,000-$76,000, depending on a variety of factors including:

  • Your surrogacy agency
  • Surrogate location (remember, surrogates live all across the country)
  • Surrogate experience - an experienced gestational carrier may have a higher compensation rate
  • Childcare costs for your gestational carrier's children during scheduled doctor's appointments
  • Breastfeeding (if you'd like your surrogate to pump and send you frozen breast milk)

Choosing your surrogate is a big decision, with many factors to consider, but don't worry, your team at your surrogacy agency is there to guide you through the process! Click to learn more about choosing and connecting with your surrogate.

Connecting With Your Surrogate

Surrogacy Agency & Legal Fees

The fees paid to your surrogacy agency (if you choose to work with one) are one of the larger "cost buckets" involved in the surrogacy process and that's because your agency is responsible for many tasks.

When looking into agency costs and associated fees, you should be critical and ask questions! This agency fee chart is a good place to start when asking your agencywhat is included and what costs you should expect outside of their fee structure.

  • Not every surrogacy agency lists every fee. When you see a charge for surrogacy listed on a website or in printed material, ask what it includes. Be as specific as possible to avoid surprises.
  • If you see a price that us much lower than elsewhere, ask what other expenses you can expect to incur. Add those to the base price that is advertised. Beware of untruthful or inaccurate figures.
More on Agency-Specific Costs
Surrogacy Agency Costs

Surrogacy Costs FAQ's

I’ve just started thinking about building my family. What is the first step I should take in regards to financial planning and understanding insurance coverages?

I know my biological family building pathway is going to involve an egg donor and a surrogate – will my insurance cover this?

What questions should I ask when I call my insurance company?

If my company offers IVF or surrogacy benefits for women or hetero couples, will they reimburse me for a surrogacy journey as a dad to be?

Are there any insurance companies that offer insurance benefits for LGBTQ individuals and couples?

Are there additional costs that I’m going to need to budget for?

What financial plans are offered through Gay Parents To Be and Illume Fertility?

We understand that the costs of surrogacy can seem overwhelming, but planning ahead, building a budget, and even taking out a loan are some ways that dads-to-be have made their dreams a reality. 

Financial grants and assistance for members of the LGBTQ community are another way that many dads have been able to take these surrogacy steps. 

Click through for a complete list of LGBTG-friendly grants & charities for family building.

List of LGBTQ+ Grants

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