Video: International IPs and the Legal Process: Hospital Care

Author: GSHC Surrogacy


Attorney Casey O’Connell of Falletta & Klein in San Diego, California answers common questions about hospital care for the Surrogate and the baby for international Intended Parents.

What happens if the baby is born prematurely?

If the child is born before the pre-birth order (PBO) is established, the health of the child is paramount. The Surrogate signs a power of attorney nominating the Intended Parents as the child’s parents. If they are present in the U.S., they can make the decision based on the power of attorney. If they are not present in the U.S., they can nominate an additional caretaker in the U.S. through a limited power of attorney to protect the child.

Next, the attorney will go to court and request the entry of the PBO judgment on an emergency basis. The Intended Parents are the child the of baby, and this chain of powers of attorney will allow them to nominate legal caretakers in their absence.

How long can the Intended Parents’ (IPs) baby stay in the hospital before being picked up?

The hospital will care for the newborn baby for as long as that baby needs care. Typically, babies remain in the hospital for 2-4 days before being cleared for discharge. If the baby has been cleared but no one is present to take custody of the baby, the hospital will charge large fees per day in order to keep the baby in the hospital.

How do IPs pay medical costs for the baby and Surrogate?

As part of the surrogacy contract, and under California law, there must be provisions in the contract that explain how the Intended Parents will pay for the Surrogate’s medical care. There are two options available:

Cash Pay (Out-of-Pocket)

You have the option to pay the hospital directly for all fees, services, and procedures required during the surrogacy journey. However, the vast majority of IPs do not do this because medical costs are very high in the United States. GSHC Surrogacy Agency recommends that you do not cash pay; but instead, obtain a medical insurance policy for your Surrogate.

Medical Insurance

Medical insurance is a type of insurance coverage that pays for medical, surgical, and sometimes dental expenses incurred by the insured. Medical insurance can reimburse the insured for expenses incurred from illness or injury, or pay the care provider directly. Your initial deposit to GSHC Surrogacy Agency will cover an insurance audit, which will outline all insurance payments you can expect to make along the journey.

With medical insurance, IPs can expect to pay for the following:

  • Monthly premiums: This is the cost of coverage, per month, for the duration of the pregnancy. Premiums can cost anywhere from $200-$800 per month depending on the Surrogate.
  • Copays:  A fixed amount a healthcare beneficiary pays for covered medical services. This amount will be due to the healthcare provider at the time of service.
  • Deductibles: The insurance deductible is the amount of money you will pay in an insurance claim before the insurance coverage kicks in and the company starts paying you. When you have a deductible, you have to come up with the amount of money for your deductible before a claim gets paid in many circumstances.

View the full interview with Casey O’Connell HERE

If you are considering surrogacy, please contact GSHC Surrogacy Agency by completing our Intended Parent Intake Form, call us at 310.953.0137, or send an email to [email protected] to learn more about how we can help you achieve your dream of starting a family!