Having Questions About Surrogacy?
Surrogate Mother Overview
As a gestational carrier/surrogate, you have the power to give the ultimate gift to someone struggling to start a family. There are many reasons for needing someone to carry a pregnancy, but the main reasons are the absence of a uterus, uterine abnormalities, multiple failed IVF cycles, and miscarriages as well as health issues that could prevent a healthy pregnancy. At 3 Sisters Surrogacy, it is our mission and passion to be a part of your Journey to creating families.
It’s an amazing adventure and our goal has always been to be the “Sister” you need to talk to, to count on to be there for you, and to hold your hand on this path.
If you are ready to take the next step, you can fill out our Surrogate Mother Application.
The Timeline for Surrogacy
Here are what steps you need to take:
The Process of Becoming A Surrogate Mother
There are many highlights in your journey as a surrogate. Click below for a more detailed look at the surrogate journey timeline.
Meeting the Surrogate Requirements
There are a number of reasons why we require women to meet certain criteria before applying as a surrogate. Because gestational surrogacy relies on a woman’s physical health and psychological preparedness, we need to be sure that the surrogates we provide to couples are ideal for the job.
We also need to make sure that all legal and insurance aspects are covered before we get started.
Our Gestational Surrogate Requirements
Before you apply to become a surrogate with us, make sure that you go over our basic requirements. Determining now whether you meet our surrogacy criteria will save you the time and effort of filling out an application only to be declined.
Our requirements for becoming a surrogate are as follows:
- You are a resident of a surrogacy-friendly state (e.g., Texas).
You must be a U.S. citizen and legal resident of a state where it is legal for you to serve as a surrogate. Your surrogacy (including the signing of all documents) must also take place within that state, as other states may or may not recognize the validity of your surrogacy contract.
- You are between 21-39 years of age.
Our fertility experts have determined this age range to be biologically ideal for successful gestational surrogacies.
- You’ve had a previous successful delivery of a live child at term.
We need to be sure that all surrogates have been shown to be capable of successfully carrying and giving birth to a healthy baby. Your medical history must also be free of pregnancy complications like gestational diabetes, pre-term delivery, or pre-eclampsia.
- You live in a drug and smoke-free home.
To ensure the health and safety of the baby, your home must be completely free of smoking, drug use, alcohol abuse, or any other potentially harmful substance use, even if you do not actively participate.
- You are not on public assistance (except in the case of a disabled child).
Surrogates must not be active recipients of public assistance. The only exception to this is if you are on public assistance to help you with the care of a disabled child.
- You must undergo a full medical exam.
To get an idea of a woman’s health and physical fitness for surrogacy, we require full medical exams (OB-GYN, physical, infectious disease screening, etc.). Because of the risks related to obesity in pregnancy, your BMI will need to be no greater than 32 to qualify as a surrogate.
- Both you and any spouse/partner must undergo background checks.
We need to make sure that neither the surrogate nor her spouse/partner have a criminal or violent history that may endanger the process or the baby.
- Both you and any spouse/partner must undergo psychological evaluations.
We also need to determine whether the surrogate or her spouse/partner have any mental, emotional, or behavioral issues that may endanger the process or the baby.
- You have appropriate legal counsel.
Surrogates should have their own lawyers, different from those of the intended parents. If the surrogate is married, her spouse will also need to sign any legal documents. While you may be a surrogate as either a single or married person, you will not qualify if you are in the midst of a separation/divorce. The attorney specializing in 3rd Party Parenting is provided for you.
- You have health insurance coverage for at least eight weeks post-delivery.
We need to know that the surrogate will be covered by insurance throughout the pregnancy as well as after delivery. If the surrogate does not have coverage, the intended parents will be required to purchase it.
I Meet the Requirements! Now What?
If you meet all of the requirements listed above, congratulations! As your next step, you should fill out and submit our online surrogacy application. If your application is accepted, one of our surrogacy liaisons will contact you to discuss the transfer of medical records and schedule an in-home meeting. Your liaison can also answer any questions you may have about things like compensation, legal issues, and other process details.
Once everything is in place, and you’ve been fully initiated as a surrogate with our agency, your profile will become available to prospective parents. When a couple chooses you, you’ll begin the exciting process of preparing for your important role as a guardian of their little one.
Still, have questions that you want to ask before you apply? Give us a call at (877) 976-9483.
How Much Do Surrogates Get Compensated?
Surrogates usually receive a base compensation amount as well as other compensation and benefits throughout the process.
At 3 Sisters Surrogacy, YOU decide your base compensation. We recommend that compensation packages usually start around $40k, and go up depending on experience, insurance, location, and other variables such as multiples, travel, bed rest, etc. The compensation package is just one part of the total surrogacy experience and each case is individualized.
The exact amount of base compensation you will receive as a surrogate is determined on an individual basis and depends on a number of factors:
- Intended parents’ budget
- Previous surrogacy experience
- Number of previous pregnancies
- The overall success of surrogacy
- Health insurance coverage
Perhaps the most common myth about surrogacy compensation is that a woman can make a lot of money—as much as $100,000. In reality, surrogates are not paid such high amounts, and claims to the contrary are largely fabricated. If a surrogate were ever to be compensated with such a large sum, it would have to be an extremely rare and particular case.
Another myth is the idea that the more educated or successful a surrogate is, the more compensation she will receive. This is simply not true! All surrogates are treated equally, and all surrogates’ compensation is calculated using the same elements. Your degree, career level, and financial success will have no bearing whatsoever on how much you will be paid.
Compensation Varies By State
The average base surrogate compensation amount can also differ from state to state. One notable trend, however, is that states along the East and West coast tend to offer more compensation. This difference in compensation may be due to the increase in surrogacy agencies in coastal areas; to stay competitive, surrogacy agencies in those regions offer higher compensation.
Benefits and Compensation Before You’re Pregnant
In addition to your base compensation as a surrogate, there are special benefits you will receive in the time before you are pregnant. Below are a few examples of common pre-pregnancy benefits:
- Travel expenses for doctors’ appointments,
- Relevant medical expenses not covered by your own health insurance (including co-pays)
- Fees for screenings, cycle medications, and embryo transfer (varies by agency)
- Childcare costs
- Lost income (from time off for surrogacy obligations)
Benefits and Compensation After You’re Pregnant
Once pregnancy has been confirmed, you’ll begin to receive additional compensation. Availability and amounts may vary depending on agency policies, but the following are examples of commonly offered benefits:
- Continuing travel, medical, and childcare assistance
- Monthly allowance, typically around $150-200 a month (unless agency uses flat-rate)
- Money for maternity clothes
- Legal and social work support
- Counseling, support groups
- Coverage for additional invasive procedures
Additional Benefits and Compensation
Other benefits that may or may not be offered by a given surrogacy agency include the following:
- Termination fee (if necessary)
- Canceled cycle fee
- Compensation for breast milk
- Coverage for damage to reproductive organs
- Coverage for bed rest (as ordered by a doctor)
- Additional insurance
- Life insurance
- Complications insurance
- Coverage for post-delivery recovery expenses
Become a Gestational Surrogate
To learn more about the surrogacy process and the compensation packages we offer, call us at (877) 976-9483. If you’re ready to get started, fill out our initial application today!
How Can Our Finance Coach Help?
Whether you are an Intended Parent or a Gestational Surrogate, there is an enormous investment of time and money throughout the process.
3 Sisters Surrogacy is leading the industry in providing you with a team of experienced, personal coaches, rich video content, and templates that will identify the financial resources available to help you on your journey.
Please let us know and we will provide resources to you.
Letter to Future Surrogates
Dear Future Surrogate,
Thank you for considering 3 Sisters Surrogacy as a part of your gestational surrogacy journey! We are seeking surrogate candidates who possess a strong sense of commitment to this unique journey, to demonstrate the utmost integrity, dependability, and compassion and have a genuine humanitarian desire to assist an infertile couple or individual in becoming the parents they have dreamed of. Surrogacy requires a serious contribution of time and effort, so surrogate candidates must be willing to fully commit to the entire process, from start to finish.
We expect that our Intended Parents to bring this same sense of commitment, integrity, and dependability to this journey as you join together as a “Team” to bring a new life into a waiting family.
As an agency, we are here to help guide prospective (or “intended”) parents and Surrogates through the surrogacy process from start to finish. We begin with matching couples with a candidate, managing interviews, appointments and travel, making arrangements for legal contracts, and providing moral support and expert advice throughout the process. Our goal is to be staunch advocates for both our Surrogates and our Intended Parents as they navigate a difficult and at times confusing process.
We are in the business of helping couples start their family when they are unable to conceive on their own. Our staff emphasizes the importance of sensitivity, open communication, and support with our clients. 3 Sisters Surrogacy works with a wide variety of clients from all over the country.
Surrogacy has been described as one of the most powerful and rewarding decisions a woman can make. Thank you for considering 3 Sisters Surrogacy as your partner as you begin this unique journey. We hope to get to know you!
Mary and the 3 Sisters Surrogacy Team
Surrogate Mother Frequently Asked Questions
If you’re interested in becoming a surrogate mother, you may have questions like “what is surrogacy?” and “who can be a surrogate mother?” The following FAQ should help you find answers to these and other burning questions.
What is a surrogate mother?
A surrogate mother is a woman who agrees to carry a baby to term for the purpose of giving that child to a set of intended parents. Surrogate mothers are commonly used by couples who suffer from infertility (or otherwise choose not to conceive on their own) to have and raise genetically related children.
How much does a surrogate make?
The amount of money a surrogate can make depends upon the agency, the mother’s health, the number of pregnancies, and various other details.
Why would you want to be a surrogate mother?
There are many reasons for being a surrogate mother, so it depends on the individual. The common thread all surrogates share is a desire to help couples have the biological children they dream of.
What’s the difference between gestational and traditional surrogacy?
In traditional surrogacy, the egg is provided by the surrogate, making the baby the surrogate mother’s biological offspring. In gestational surrogacy, the egg is donated by the intended mother, and the embryo is implanted in the surrogate by In Vitro Fertilization (IVF).
What’s a gestational carrier/what is a surrogate pregnancy?
A gestational carrier is a woman who becomes pregnant with the genetic offspring of the intended parents in gestational surrogacy. A traditional surrogate pregnancy is the carrying of an embryo formed by impregnating the surrogate with the intended father’s sperm.
Why choose 3 Sisters Surrogacy?
We are the only surrogacy agency that has two highly educated career infertility specialists on staff, as well as 35+ years of experience in the field. For women looking to become gestational surrogates, we offer competitive compensation packages and a variety of resources and staff support throughout your pregnancy.
What are the requirements for becoming a surrogate mother?
3 Sisters Surrogacy requires that all prospective gestational surrogate mothers must meet the following guidelines:
- Age 21-39
- A resident of a surrogacy-friendly state (e.g., Texas)
- Previously has delivered a live child at full term
- Has undergone a thorough medical exam to determine physical and gestational health
- Both the surrogate and any spouse/partner(s) must pass a psychological evaluation and a full criminal background check
- Has a lawyer not the same as that of the intended parents, and has all legal contracts signed by the surrogate’s legal spouse, if applicable
- Has health insurance that covers 8 weeks post-delivery (must be purchased by intended parents if the surrogate does not have it)
Can I still be a gestational carrier if I’ve had my tubes tied?
Yes! Having your tubes “tied” only affects your body’s ability to release eggs for insemination, not your body’s ability to take up an embryo in the womb. Because 3 Sisters Surrogacy only employs gestational carriers and not traditional surrogates, there is no need for you to provide an egg.
Do STI/STDs disqualify me?
Possibly, but it depends. You will, of course, be asked to complete a medical exam that includes a pap smear, vaginal ultrasound, hysteroscopy, and blood testing for infectious disease as part of the application process to be a gestational surrogate. Any spouse or partner(s) will also be required to undergo this blood testing.
Who pays the bills?
Pregnancy can be expensive, and the toll on the surrogate can be great. All medical bills should be covered primarily by your health insurance, but any other medical expenses directly related to your pregnancy will be covered by the intended parents (including insurance co-pays).
Do you have a question you didn’t see listed here?
Contact us directly; we’re here to help! We look forward to hearing from you.
Apply to Be a Surrogate Mother
Thank you for showing interest in helping a family achieve their dreams of being a parent. To begin the process we will direct you to our Surrogacy Application form.
We have the following criteria to qualify as a surrogate mother in our program.
- 21–39 years of age
- Live in a surrogacy-friendly state like Texas.
- Have delivered a live-born child at term.
- Undergo a complete medical exam (obstetric and lifestyle history, physical exam, infectious disease screening, uterine cavity assessment).
- Surrogate Candidate and Spouse (partner) must have a psychological evaluation
- Surrogate Candidate and Spouse (partner) will have a complete background check performed.
- Obtain legal counsel (Must use different lawyer than intended parent/parents use). If married, the spouse must sign legal contracts.
- Must have health insurance that covers you for 8 weeks after delivery (The intended parents must purchase this for the gestational carrier if she does not have it.)