Working Through the Red Tape: Surrogates and Insurance
Sticky, sticky, sticky - sometimes insurance can seem like double-sided red tape.
If you have considered being a surrogate and are looking into insurance options, you are already moving in the right direction.
Intended parents (IPs) often depend on the surrogate’s insurance coverage to pay for pregnancy-related medical expenses, so it is important to find a policy that covers pregnancy fairly well and does not exclude coverage based on the fact that you will be acting as a gestational surrogate (IPs will cover your out of pocket expenses, though, so you'll be reimbursed for any pregnancy related expenses you incur.) There are policies that can help IPs, but they can end up costing the parents up to $27,000 (and that's on top of any compensation you receive). From the IPs point of view, a surrogate who already has insurance that covers surrogacy helps them save money, and may make that surrogate seem like a better fit.
With that being said here are a few things to consider about insurance and becoming a surrogate:
Do I need health insurance to become a surrogate?
Yes, whether under your own policy that covers surrogacy or under a policy purchased for you by the IPs. Current law requires everyone to carry Minimal Essential Coverage for health insurance at the very least and we want to make sure our surrogates are in compliance with the law!
How do I find out if my insurance covers surrogacy?
Call them and ask about your benefits coverage, and if there are any exclusions. Colorado Surrogacy is happy to look over your policy and give an educated guess as to whether your policy covers surrogacy, and there are professional review companies that, for reasonable cost, can determine definitively whether your policy will exclude surrogacy.
If my insurance does not cover surrogacy does this mean I can’t be a surrogate?
Absolutely not! Even if your current insurance fully excludes coverage while acting as a gestational surrogate, you might be able to change to a policy that does cover surrogacy during the next open enrollment period. Additionally, IPs can purchase supplemental insurance to cover the surrogacy.
Is there any insurance that prohibits me from becoming a surrogate?
The only insurance that is a definite no when pursuing surrogacy is Medicaid. We appreciate and are excited that you want to do an amazing thing to help create another family, but first we must think of yours. Due to the compensation received for being a surrogate both you and your dependents will most likely lose their Medicaid coverage, and we do not want this to happen. Some states explicitly state that it is against the law to act as a surrogate while you or your dependents receive Medicaid coverage. We want to make sure that first and foremost you and your children still have medical coverage to protect you.
Nothing is impossible, even sticky insurance red tape. You want to help make someone else’s dreams come true; there might be a few bumps in the road, like insurance, but in the end it is all worth the gift of joy you are able to help provide.