Surrogacy in New Jersey

Surrogacy is permitted in New Jersey and Intended Parents can obtain a pre-birth order of using their own genetic material, or donor eggs and sperm. In New Jersey, the pre-birth order process is very predictable and uniform in each of the state’s counties. Jurisdiction is based on the IPs’ residence, surrogate residence, or the county of the child’s anticipated birth.

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Gestational surrogacy is expressly supported by the New Jersey Gestational Carrier Agreement Act of 2018. Prior to the Act, compensated surrogacy arrangements were prohibited in the state and held unenforceable pursuant to A.H.W. and P.W. v. G.H.B (2000), and in re T.J.S. (2012). Now, pre-birth parentage orders can readily be obtained by any Intended Parent, whether married or unmarried, a heterosexual or same-sex couple or individual, and even if neither Intended Parent is genetically related to the child.

New Jersey Surrogacy Laws at a Glance

New Jersey courts grant pre-birth parentage orders in surrogacy cases. Both Intended Parents can be declared the legal parents in a pre-birth order where one or even neither parent is genetically related to the child. Pre-birth orders can be granted if the parent(s) are both single or coupled, married or unmarried, gay or straight, or even when using an egg or sperm donor.

Pre-Birth Orders Are Granted in New Jersey for…

 
 
 
 

Additional Notes on Pre-Birth Orders:

Following a pre-birth order, both genetic parents (as well as non-genetic parents if applicable) will be named on the birth certificate. The surrogacy legislation also allows for parentage even in cases of embryo donation.

The pre-birth order process starts once the surrogate is about 15 weeks pregnant. Once all the required documents are submitted to the court, it takes about 3 weeks to obtain a signed pre-birth order. No hearing or court appearance by the Intended Parents is required.

Post-Birth Parental Orders are also available in New Jersey, but pre-birth orders are legally supported and preferred for many reasons.

Following a pre-birth order, same-sex parents are named on the final birth certificate as “Parent A” and “Parent B”

An egg or sperm donor has no parental rights over the child. this is specifically addressed in the existing legislation.

 

Surrogacy Contracts in New Jersey

Currently, only gestational surrogacy contracts are enforceable in New Jersey. Traditional surrogacy contracts are unenforceable.
New Jersey surrogacy laws lay out specific steps for the creation of a gestational surrogacy contract. Both parties must meet certain requirements before proceeding:

Surrogate Requirements:

  • Be at least 21 years of age
  • Has given birth to at least one child
  • Has completed a medical and psychological examination
  • Has retained an independent attorney for the agreement drafting process

Intended Parent(s) Requirements:

  • Has completed a psychological examination
  • Has retained an independent attorney for the agreement drafting process

 

A gestational surrogacy contract must be executed in writing by the gestational carrier, her spouse (if applicable) and each intended parent. It must be executed after the intended parents’ and surrogate’s screenings but before any other medical steps can begin. The contract must also lay out the express terms of the surrogacy, including the surrogate’s willingness to undergo embryo transfer and surrender custody of the child after birth, as well as her right to medical care decisions after notifying the intended parents. The intended parents’ responsibility to accept custody of the child after birth is also expressly stated.

On the other hand, traditional surrogacy contracts in New Jersey are largely dependent on the integrity of everyone involved, as they cannot currently be enforced in a court of law. Always speak with a New Jersey surrogacy attorney for more information about this surrogacy process.
 

Best Surrogacy Clinics in New Jersey

There are 19 fertility clinics in New Jersey currently reporting data about IVF cases. Of these, there are 6 clinics that regularly perform “surrogacy-type” IVF cases. Surrogacy cases are those using a donor egg and frozen embryo transfers, which is the most common procedure in a surrogacy journey.

The top IVF clinics in Michigan have an average success rate of about 47.53% for each embryo transfer. That compares with 46.5% as the national average, which makes New Jersey a favorable destination for a surrogacy journey in the United States.

Of the clinics performing surrogacy-type services, 2 report live-birth rates above the national average. They are:

 

Cost of Surrogacy in New Jersey

Budget ComnponentEstimated Cost
Surrogate Base Pay (estimated)$41,800
Surrogate Health Care Premiums$747 / month
Helath Insurnace Out-of-Pocket$1,500

Annual mean wage for a home health care worker in New Jersey $55,320
Average child care cost per month in New Jersey $1,082
Average hourly wage for housekeeper in New Jersey $26.60
Round trip airfare from Newark to Dallas $551.15
Average monthly insurance costs in New Jersey
Premium (GOLD) $747
Deductible/Out of Pocket $1,500/$6650

Surrogate Base Salary in New Jersey $85,108

Cost of living Index in New Jersey 125.1%

In general workers in New Jersey earn more than the national average. The annual mean wage for a home health care worker (the closest category to a surrogate mother) is $55,320. The national average is about $26,000. Extrapolating, a surrogate in New Jersey could be expected to earn around $59,108 more than the national average – ($85,108 surrogate salary – national average)
Of course there are a number of factors that will influence the final figure. Surrogates in “surrogacy friendly” states tend to earn $5000 – $8,000 more than in unfriendly states. ([State] is an unfriendly state.) Likewise, surrogate mothers that have insurance often are able to earn an additional $5,000 more because they save the Intended Parents the cost of policy premiums.
IN the end, surrogate mothers will request the compensation they feel they deserve, and that is not always based on hard statistics. But when discussing your surrogate mother’s pay, keep in mind how the general financial environment will affect her expectations and sense of fairness.