Surrogacy for Gay Men

Most Common Question From Gay Men About Surrogacy

We asked our Instagram community some of their top questions about surrogacy — Kristin Marsoli from Circle Surrogacy answers some of the most common!

We turned to our Instagram community to see what burning question gay men had about surrogacy — how much does it cost? how does the process work? How long does it take? We turned to Kristin Marsoli of Circle Surrogacy for the answers! Have some other questions you'd like our experts to answer? Email us at dads@gayswithkids.com!

How will working with an agency make my surrogacy journey easier?

Surrogacy can be a complex process with many moving parts. Working with an agency makes your journey easier because you're working with a team of professionals who are experts in surrogacy. An agency will partner with you to coordinate your journey, guide you through the process, and ensure you are ready for each milestone. This includes helping you find a surrogate, writing contracts, legal expertise and preparation for delivery day.

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Will both dads' names be on the birth certificate?

Short answer is: yes!

Intended Parents can be matched with gestational carriers who reside in states where they can obtain both names on the birth certificate with:

  • Pre-Birth or Post-birth declarations of parentage for both dads
  • Post-birth second or step-parent adoption process for non-biological dad

Intended parents can also return to their home state to complete second or step parent adoption for the non-biological dad. Intended Parents' marital status, state of residence, country of residence, citizenship needs will all impact this.

How can I be sure that I'm working with an LGBTQ friendly agency?

There are a few things to look for when considering a surrogacy agency:

  1. Do they have experience helping LGBTQ+ intended parents?
  2. Do they have the legal expertise regarding same sex parents and parentage?
  3. Are they affiliated with any LGBTQ+ organizations?

Circle Surrogacy was founded by a gay dad through surrogacy, who was also a lawyer. From its inception almost 25 years ago, Circle has been making parenthood possible – safely and securely – for LGBTQ+ families around the world.

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How much does it cost?

Surrogacy costs vary by journey. Average surrogacy costs (not including IVF clinic costs):

  • Surrogacy only: $119,000
  • Surrogacy + egg donation $145,000

At Circle Surrogacy, our costs are all inclusive (except for IVF clinic costs). Our costs include: agency fees, legal fees, surrogate & egg donor compensation and coordination, unlimited surrogate and donor rematching, travel costs and insurance. When comparing agency costs, be sure to find out exactly what their costs cover so there are no surprises along the way!

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Is surrogacy difficult for Dutch citizens?

No! There is a formula in terms of legal work, birth certificate, legal process in the Netherlands that has worked for some time. Wilma Eusman is an excellent attorney in Amsterdam that can assist with the process and is a great starting point for intended parents gathering information. Circle has worked with many intended parents successfully in the Netherlands!

How long does the surrogacy process take?

Very busy day of young business person

Great question! The average length of the surrogacy process at Circle ranges from 16-21 months, from sign on to holding your baby for the first time. Of course, there are journeys that take less time, and some that take longer. Where you live and your matching criteria can affect the length of your journey.

What are your thoughts on traditional surrogacy? Do you have much experience with it?

At Circle, we only do gestational surrogacy - where the gestational carrier is implanted with an embryo created with the intended parents biology (or with an egg donor). In gestational surrogacy, the surrogate is not genetically related to the baby. We do not do traditional surrogacy.

Is the process harder when someone wants to be a single parent?

The surrogacy process is the same process for all intended parents. Single intended parents should be prepared to have a strong support system to assist them during their journey, as well as after the baby arrives. Being a single intended parents may slightly impact your match time, but other than that, the process is the same. Some of Circle's first intended parents from over 20 years ago were single gay dads!

Where can I find an AFFORDABLE surrogacy option?

Surrogacy costs vary for each individual journey. However, here are considerations on how you can reduce the costs of your surrogacy journey:

  • Research organizations that offer grants and discounts, such as the Men Having Babies GPAP program.
  • See if your own company benefits packages reveals IVF, surrogacy and other benefits you may not know you had.
  • Find surrogacy programs that help control costs. At Circle, we offer an unlimited package of rematching with surrogates and donors, as well as a fixed fee program that, while looking more expensive, will completely control your costs.

What percentage are actually successful the first time?

The IVF process has improved greatly over the last 5 years; today, a single embryo transfer success rate is usually over 70%. NOTE: it's common for intended parents to experience more than one transfer. Industry guidelines advise IPs to measure success with up to 3 transfers.

-->At Circle, 95.5% of IPs who signed on since 2015 and completed a journey with us with at least 1 transfer had a baby! And 99.4% of IPs who did at least 3 transfers had a baby!

(Fertility clinics are usually able to answer questions about their success rates with donor eggs and surrogacy.)

What do most couples look for when choosing an agency?

Friendly company executive interviewing candidate for vacancy

Choosing the right agency for you is an important first step! Consider this when choosing a surrogacy agency:

  • Agency experience
  • Legal expertise
  • Personality fit
  • Views on surrogate relationship
  • Costs of services
  • Full service vs non full service

Your agency will play a critical role in the success of your surrogacy journey. Finding a reputable agency that you feel comfortable working with is key!

Read more.

Is there financing available for surrogacy costs for gay men?

Yes! Circle currently works with Prosper lending that offers different loans for all U.S. intended parents. The Men Having Babies Organization (MHB) also has programs that we take part in that offer discounted services (and sometimes free services) through their GPAP program.

Read more.

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If you have ever been out late on a Saturday night, you may have high hopes of meeting a handsome stranger, but you probably wouldn't expect to meet your future husband. Angel Mario Martinez Garcia, 45, surely didn't when, five years ago on a very early Saturday morning in Barcelona, he casually approached Dan's Mouquet, 40, and asked him, over many gin and tonics, what he wanted out of life. The nightlife setting notwithstanding, Dan's told Angel he ultimately wanted a quiet life, with a partner and children.

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The Child-Parent Security Act, which legalizes commercial surrogacy in New York State, was included in the 2020 New York State Budget signed by Governor Cuomo

Yesterday, a years-long battle about the state of compensated gestational surrogacy came to an end in New York when the Governor signed into a law the Child-Parent Security Act in the 2020 as part of the state budget.

The effort stalled last year after opponents, including several Democrats, successfully argued that the bill didn't go far enough to protect women who serve as surrogates — even though it included a surrogate "bill of rights," the first of its kind in the country, aimed at ensuring protections.

"Millions of New Yorkers need assistance building their families — people struggling with infertility, cancer survivors impacted by treatment, and members of the LGBTQ+ community," the Family Equality Council said in a statement about the victory. "For many, surrogacy is a critically important option. For others, it is the only option. Passage of the Child-Parent Security Act is a massive step forward in providing paths to parenthood for New Yorkers who use reproductive technology, and creates a 'surrogate's bill of rights' that will set a new standard for protecting surrogates nationwide."

Opponents, led by Senator Liz Krueger, had once again attempted to torpedo legalization efforts this year by introducing a second bill that would legalize surrogacy in New York, but also make it the most restrictive state in the country to do so. "A bill that complicates the legal proceedings for the parents and potentially allows them to lose their genetic child is truly unfortunate," said Sam Hyde, President of Circle Surrogacy, referencing to the bill's 8-day waiting period. He also took issue with the bills underlying assumptions about why women decide to serve as a surrogate. The added restrictions imply that "they're entering into these arrangements without full forethought and consideration of the intended parents that they're partnering with," he said.

The bill was sponsored by State Senator Brad Hoylman, an out gay man who became a father via surrogacy, and Assemblymember Amy Paulin, who has been public with her experiences with infertility.

"My husband and I had our two daughters through surrogacy," Holyman told Gay City News. "But we had to travel 3,000 miles away to California in order to do it. As a gay dad, I'm thrilled parents like us and people struggling with infertility will finally have the chance to create their own families through surrogacy here in New York."

"This law will [give intended parents] the opportunity to have a family in New York and not travel around the country, incurring exorbitant costs simply because they want to be parents," Paulin said for her part. It will "bring New York law in line with the needs of modern families."


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