Quality vs Quantity
  • The average lead time for a Golden Surrogate can vary depending on a variety of factors. On the fast side it could be a short 4 month wait, or as long as 6-12 months. Recruiting and pre-screening your ideal match is a complex process that takes time when done correctly. As a high-end agency it is our expectation that your first presented Surrogate is accepted by your reproductive endocrinologist. Golden strives to get this right on the first attempt. Other agencies may provide an initially fast “match” who doesn’t actually end up being approved by your clinic. These unfortunate scenarios are common in the industry, especially among agencies that rush or skip the pre-screening process. Please read below to understand other important factors that influence cost and matching speed.
Insurance
  • When Surrogates do not have their own usable insurance policy options are extremely limited. Intended Parents seeking to match more expeditiously must be willing to accept a Surrogate solely based on general preferences like pregnancy values, and clinical acceptance not her insurance status.
  • Open-enrollment (Nov. 1st – Dec. 15th) private policies for $400-$600/mo.
  • Universal Surrogate Maternity Policy for $30,000 avg. Once the healthcare exchange closes, if your Surrogate does not have usable insurance, this is the only available product offered to cover a surrogate pregnancy.
Embryo Status
  • Most Surrogates are unwilling to consider a match whereby the Intended Parents do not yet have at least (3) three frozen and genetically tested embryos ready-to-go. If you’re just starting out in the process, no worries. However, please know that your matching timeline will be near the latter part of our estimates. Embryo creation alone typically takes 4-5 months on average to complete if you’re selecting an IVF clinic and Egg Donor from scratch. For Intended Parents who have less than (3) genetically tested embryos, matching is not entirely impossible, but it will be challenging.

The average gestational surrogacy journey costs between $150,000-$225,000. This figure could be higher or lower depending on agency program selection, surrogate health insurance, and whether egg donation is needed. Other incidentals such as repeat embryo transfers, multiple births, complicated legal issues, or unforeseen pregnancy circumstances could increase your total upwards of $250,000 and beyond. To fully understand every component and all the variables, it is best to book a consultation with a member of our team. Bring your questions! We’re happy to help.

Intended Parents ask this question during almost every consultation. What they really want to know by asking is: how many babies are born through your program each year? how many couples or individuals walk away with a baby at the end of their journey with Golden Surrogacy?

Golden believes that surrogacy agencies should never tout a live-birth number or ratio as a factor that determines their success. The number of babies born each year through a surrogacy agency is quite irrelevant, as it relates to trying to find a successful agency. There are many different factors at-play that can have an impact on embryo implantation, and if a live-birth ultimately occurs. The surrogacy agency does not have any impact on the egg donor selection, egg retrieval process, quality of eggs, quality or genetic integrity of the embryos, embryology, or IVF protocol that was prescribed. These are all items that fall directly under the responsibility of the fertility center (IVF clinic), and the reproductive endocrinologist (RE).

As an agency, sometimes we have Intended Parents using donor eggs with high-quality genetically tested embryos for transfer. In these cases, we typically see a large majority of first-embryo transfer success stories. On the other end of the spectrum, we also assist couples who may have only one (1) embryo remaining from a batch of embryos that was created during their own struggles through infertility. Most often, those embryos are not genetically tested and could have been of poor quality. In those instances, implantation and live-birth is not achieved. Due to the very large array Intended Parents all finding this process under various circumstances, success or non-success is extremely individualized to their specific journey.

At Golden, we judge our “success” by looking at metrics that can be directly influenced by variables within our control as the agency. These items include, surrogate health & selection criteria, quality of the match, service & support, reputation. Here are our success metrics that we like to share:

  • Preferred Tier Surrogates

    Golden has the most stringent requirements in the industry. Your surrogate is beginning the journey at the absolute healthiest baseline possible. As a result, we have never had a catastrophic outcome. Golden Surrogates do not have serious complications during pregnancy. This translates into a healthy live-baby while also maintaining the health and safety of the surrogate.

  • 99% Matching Success

    Just about every time we introduce the Intended Parent(s) and Surrogate they agree to move forward and solidify an official match.

  • 99% Surrogate to Clinic Approval

    We prescreen your surrogate as much as possible prior to presenting her profile. At Golden, it is extremely rare to ever have a surrogate fail the in-person clinical examination.

  • 98% Surrogate Vaginal Deliveries

    Because our health criteria is so strict, the chances of your surrogate having a vaginal delivery are quite high. This correlates to her having a shorter hospital stay, faster recovery time, lung development and other health benefits for your baby, reduced lost wages, and the list goes on. Trust us, a vaginal delivery is what every Intended Parent and Surrogate should want.

  • Stellar Reputation

    We excel at providing exceptional customer service and support. The agency has managed hundreds of cases and has been in business for nearly a decade. Yet, all of our feedback still remains consistently positive. This means we have a lot to maintain and an obligation to provide our Intended Parents and Surrogates with the absolute best-in-class experience available.

Surrogates at Golden Surrogacy are always recruited from surrogacy-friendly states. We remain very cognizant of the desire that our Intended Parents have to be as included in their pregnancy as possible. For this reason, special emphasis is placed on curating a regional match nearest to your home location when possible.

It doesn’t matter where the Intended Parent(s) live as long their surrogate maintains residency and gives birth in a surrogacy-friendly state. The laws of the surrogate’s state are what govern the entire legal agreement between all parties and ultimately determine the process for obtaining parentage. Golden will ensure that both the Intended Parent(s) and Surrogate are referred to two separate and independent reproductive law attorneys who are licensed in your surrogate’s state. These attorneys are who represents everyone’s legal interest during the contract drafting and parentage phase of the surrogacy journey.

Can’t I just find my own Surrogate? Simply put, you don’t know what you don’t know. As a new Intended Parent, there are many intricacies to the world of third-party reproduction, most of which you may not understand or even be aware of. The respective surrogacy laws, medical processes, and normal occurrences of your “every-day” surrogacy can be quite overwhelming to wrap your head around. Managing such an endeavor correctly really is a fulltime job. Creating a family should be the happiest moment in ones’ life. Attempting to coordinate the entire process as a novice can detract from the joy and happiness of family building.

Golden Surrogacy recruits only the best selection of the most thoroughly screened Surrogates while also providing a smooth experience for everyone. This provides the piece of mind our Intended Parents expect as they focus on their future new life as a parent. Sit back and let your dedicated Care Team here at Golden do all the heavy lifting!

Golden Surrogacy has been in business since 2013. The founders, Frank & Adam Golden began researching surrogacy in 2010, and initiated their first journey in 2011. The couple has over a decade of knowledge in the third-party reproduction industry. Their passion and experience is what guides the success of the agency to this day!

Our Surrogates are recruited primarily through word-of-mouth referrals, and also by utilizing the many facets of social media and the world wide web. In addition, we may also sponsor in-person events and engage in other community outreach activities. Recruiting quality surrogates to meet the demand is extremely challenging. In order to accomplish this, a successful agency must deploy many multi-channel marketing tactics at various strategic times throughout the year. During the onboarding process all qualified candidates who meet our list of requirements are then rigorously screened to ensure the accuracy of the information they have provided to the agency.

The matching process must be treated with the high level of importance that it deserves. Your desired communication goals will be at the forefront of our conversation prior to the matching phase. Newly onboarded Intended Parents will have gone through an orientation process at the onset of their engagement with Golden Surrogacy. During that time an entire range of matching preferences may be conveyed to the agency to ensure that a like-minded surrogate with similar expectations is recruited for your specific journey.

Each relationship outcome can vary greatly depending on the chemistry between the parties. It is imperative that Intended Parents and Surrogates discuss this topic and mutually agree on an acceptable level of interaction that is suitable for everyone prior to moving forward.

First and foremost, your escrow funds are safe and insured! Golden refers to a third-party, independent, and attorney owned escrow management company that specializes in Trust Account Management Services. Funds are maintained and distributed with the highest level of fiduciary and ethical standards in accordance to your surrogacy legal agreement. Monies are held in an Interest Only Lawyer’s Trust Account (IOLTA) and managed by a Certified Public Accountant. Utilizing an independent firm eliminates the potential conflict of interest that arises when a surrogacy agency is holding escrow funds while also representing all parties to the reproductive arrangement.

After a successful match has been made between the Intended Parent(s) and Surrogate, all reimbursements and payments related to your surrogate are then processed by the escrow company as per the guidelines outlined in your contract. Escrow funds never pass through the agency’s hands. Our operations teams works closely with the Escrow Management firm and your Care Team to monitor all transactions for accuracy. Intended Parents automatically receive a transaction statement on the 10th of each month or as requested.

In a gestational surrogacy arrangement, Intended Parents create embryos through In Vitro Fertilization (IVF), using their own genetic material (sperm) and eggs from a donor. One or more of the embryos is then transferred into the Gestational Surrogate, (or also referred to as the gestational carrier) who then carries the child or children to full term, but has no genetic relationship to them.

By contrast, a Traditional Surrogate is impregnated through Intrauterine Insemination (IUI), utilizing her own genetic material (eggs), thus giving the surrogate a genetic connection to the child(ren) they are carrying for the Intended Parents.

Here at Golden Surrogacy we only recruit Gestational Surrogates and manage Gestational Surrogacy arrangements.

Choosing an egg donor is an important decision and may feel overwhelming. Some Intended Parents choose donors primarily based on physical attributes, or one who shares in their own ethnic, religious, or cultural background. Still, others hope to find an Egg Donor who is healthy and athletic or has musical and artistic talent. This is obviously something that you must take time to consider in a thoughtful and methodical way. To help simplify, Golden recommends prioritizing your criteria into the following three (3) buckets: (These are not listed in order of importance)

  1. Health

    Intended Parents should review the egg donor’s personal and family health history to weed out any diseases that genetic experts have determined may commonly be passed down through heredity. This information is typically contained in the egg donor’s profile.

  2. Education

    Nature vs Nurture, the great debate! However, regardless of what factors may influence your future child’s smarts, most Intended Parents do prefer to choose an egg donor that has demonstrated some degree of academic achievement or interest.

  3. Appearance

    Let’s face it, you’re combining your genetic material with an egg donor to create the child you envision having. As such, you must certainly have an idea of what physical characteristics you would like your child to potentially have. This is a perfectly normal thing to have weighing on your mind. Do not feel bad about this.

Deciding what type of Egg Donation arrangement to choose is a personal choice. Most often, we find that a majority of our Intended Parents engage in an anonymous egg donation agreement. This is usually the most preferred method because it can offer a more seamless and time efficient selection process while also prioritizing legal protections for everyone involved. Just remember there isn’t a right or wrong approach. The Intended Parent(s) or Egg Donor can always work through the agency to request needed information or future contact at a later date after the birth of any resulting child(ren).

Should Intended Parents choose an open or semi-open egg donation arrangement then the agency and attorneys will work closely with all parties to outline the terms for an agreement that provides the appropriate level of communication that is mutually agreeable.

It doesn’t matter where the Intended Parent(s) live as long their surrogate maintains residency and gives birth in a surrogacy-friendly state. The laws of the surrogate’s state are what govern the entire legal agreement between all parties and ultimately determine the process for obtaining parentage. Golden will ensure that both the Intended Parent(s) and Surrogate are referred to two separate and independent reproductive law attorneys who are licensed in your surrogate’s state. These attorneys are who represents everyone’s legal interest during the contract drafting and parentage phase of the surrogacy journey.

  • Application
    Surrogate applicants must successfully complete a detailed questionnaire and provide information regarding their pregnancy & health history, family, living situation, support system, employment, and they must discuss their motivation for wanting to become a Surrogate. This process can take applicants 45-60 minutes to complete thoroughly. They must also submit photo identification and sign a HIPAA release waiver for medical records collection and evaluation.
  • Interview
    A member of the Surrogate Intake Team will conduct a detailed interview with the applicant to verify all the information she has provided, and to assess their overall knowledge and preparedness to begin with our agency.
  • Criminal Background Check
    Surrogates and their partner/spouse (if applicable) will undergo a 7yr criminal check and address verification. Also, anyone living in the Surrogate’s home age 18yr or older is also subject to this same check.
  • Pregnancy & Health Records Collection
    All previous pregnancy and delivery records are collected. In addition, Golden Surrogacy goes above and beyond to request any existing regular PCP records to help us further assess the most accurate 360-degree view of the Surrogate’s overall health history. All records are then evaluated by a partnering Reproductive Endocrinologist, as well as the reproductive team at the specific clinic of your choice. This preliminary review and approval process is completed prior to presenting a Surrogate profile to Intended Parents.
  • Insurance Review
    The Surrogate’s insurance policy will be researched and analyzed to determine if it has usable maternity benefits which may be applicable for the surrogacy journey. Agency team members also verify that all medical providers and delivery hospital are classified as in-network prior to finalizing those selections for your pregnancy.
  • OB Medical Clearance & Lab Testing
    All Surrogates are required to have their OB sign our medical evaluation form to verify they meet Golden Surrogacy requirements, and to grant them medical clearance for becoming pregnant as a gestational surrogate. In addition, a cervical examination is conducted, and preliminary infectious disease testing is submitted.
  • In-person Psychological Assessment & Interview
    Golden Surrogacy takes mental health very seriously. Every Surrogate is required to undergo an in-person psychological assessment via psychometric testing such as the MMPI/2 or PAI, as well as a clinical interview. This is conducted by a licensed mental health provider experienced in third-party reproduction.
  • Social Worker Home-Visit
    A licensed social worker inspects the home of your Surrogate to ensure that she in a stable, safe, and clean-living environment during your journey.
  • Delivery Hospital NICU Verification
    All Surrogates in our program must live within a 45-minute drive from a Level II NICU hospital minimum. Many surrogacy agencies overlook this very critical component.
  • Final Director Level Interview
    After every piece of inspection has been carefully completed and the Surrogate is ready for matching, senior leadership at Golden Surrogacy will conduct a final interview before granting approval.

There are many components to a surrogacy journey which influence the overall timeline and everyone’s path is different. In general, the entire process can take anywhere from 18 to 24 months from the time you retain the surrogacy agency until holding your baby. Checkout our Surrogacy Timeline to learn about the various steps involved.

Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART) refers to treatments and procedures that aim to achieve pregnancy by incorporating one or more of the following: In Vitro Fertilization (IVF), sperm donation, egg donation, and surrogacy.

In Vitro Fertilization (IVF): In surrogacy, is a complex series of procedures used to assist with the conception of a child. During IVF, mature eggs are collected (from an Egg Donor or Intended Mother) and fertilized by sperm (from a Donor or Intended Father) in the lab to form an Embryo. The embryo is transferred into the surrogate’s uterus.

Intended Parent(s) (IP or IPs), is one or two individuals who initiate the surrogacy journey with the intention to be the legal parent(s) of the future child/ren.

Gestational Surrogate (GS) or Gestational Carrier (GC) is a woman gestating a child of no genetic relation, for another individual or couple to help them achieve parenthood. The abbreviations GS and GC are used interchangeably throughout the surrogacy community.

Egg Donor (ED) is an individual who provides eggs (oocytes) for another individual, couple, or entity through a noncoital method and without the intent to become a legal parent of any resulting offspring.

Gestational Surrogacy Agreement (GSA) is an agreement between the Intended Parent(s) and a Surrogate and her spouse/partner, if applicable. GSAs are critical to any surrogacy journey. They detail the parties’ rights, obligations, intentions, and expectations in connection with their arrangement. They also address subjects such as parental rights, custody issues, location of delivery, future contact between the parties, and insurance (both health and life). In addition, GSAs cover issues such as control over medical decisions during the pregnancy, payment of medical bills, liability for medical complications, availability of medical history and personal medical information on the gestational carrier and intended parents’ presence during doctor’s visits and at the delivery. Financial considerations such as the gestational carrier’s compensation and expenses, including lost wages, legal fees, childcare, and maternity clothes are also addressed in the contract.

Both Intended Parents and Surrogates must be represented by a licensed Assisted Reproductive Technology Attorney in the state where the Surrogate resides. This is because every state has its own unique surrogacy or related laws which govern that process. The attorneys licensed in the Surrogate’s home state are usually the most knowledgeable about what exactly is required in the contract to conform to that state’s family building statutes.

Industry best practice is to avoid a conflict of interest when helping to navigate surrogacy journeys. For this reason, Golden Surrogacy does not have in-house legal counsel available for contract drafting. When it is time for the legal phase of a surrogacy journey to begin, we will make a referral and recommendation to outside and independent attorneys to represent the parties. Independent representation benefits everyone while also offering the most transparency.

Golden Surrogacy is focused on offering premium level of services paired with a healthier caliber surrogate as compared to what the industry standard is. We value the base criteria recommendations that were set by the American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM), but feel that our Intended Parents and Surrogates deserve better.

  • Preferred Tier Surrogates

    Golden has the most stringent requirements in the industry. Your surrogate is beginning the journey at the absolute healthiest baseline possible. As a result, we have never had a catastrophic outcome. Golden Surrogates do not have serious complications during pregnancy. This translates into a healthy live-baby while also maintaining the health and safety of the surrogate.

  • 99% Matching Success

    Just about every time we introduce the Intended Parent(s) and Surrogate they agree to move forward and solidify an official match.

  • 99% Surrogate to Clinic Approval

    We pre-screen your surrogate as much as possible prior to presenting her profile. At Golden, it is extremely rare to ever have a surrogate fail the in-person clinical examination.

  • 98% Surrogate Vaginal Deliveries

    Because our health criteria is so strict, the chances of your surrogate having a vaginal delivery are quite high. This correlates to her having a shorter hospital stay, faster recovery time, lung development and other health benefits for your baby, reduced lost wages, and the list goes on. Trust us, a vaginal delivery is what every Intended Parent and Surrogate should want.

  • Stellar Reputation

    We excel at providing exceptional customer service and support. The agency has managed hundreds of cases and has been in business for nearly a decade. Yet, all of our feedback still remains consistently positive. This means we have a lot to maintain and an obligation to provide our Intended Parents and Surrogates with the absolute best-in-class experience available.

  • Real, Full-time Case Managers

    You might be surprised to know that a majority of surrogacy agencies in the United States have mostly remote staffs, working part-time from home. At Golden we feel that a surrogacy journey is just too important to be monitored in that manner. Under the supervision of an industry-leading management structure, we employ a full-time workforce of dedicated case managers and intake specialists. Team Golden is comprised of highly skilled professionals working in-person at our Northbrook, Illinois headquarters. The daily face-to-face interaction and team collaboration is vital to maintaining the consistent outcomes our clients have grown to expect.

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