Special report: Kimmy and co’s surrogacy costs
As Kimye prepare for the arrival of their third bub, NW investigates the cost of creating a new Hollywood heir...
Whoever said money doesn’t buy happiness has clearly never met Kim Kardashian.
From surgery sprees and designer duds, to massive Mcmansions, if Kimmy wants it, Kimmy gets it – no matter the price tag.
Earlier this year, the star decided she wanted a third baby – and she’s now dropped serious dough to make it happen.
Indeed, last month it was confirmed that Kim and her husband Kanye West – already parents to daughter North, four, and son Saint, 21 months – are expecting their third child via surrogate.
The couple decided to go down the surrogacy route after doctors warned Kim that carrying another child could prove fatal, given she suffered from placenta accreta – a high-risk condition that stops the placenta from leaving the uterus after birth.
Now, it’s estimated that by the time their baby girl is in their arms in January, Kimye will have coughed up more than $2.5 million to make it happen! Small change, really, given the power couple have a combined fortune of more than $250 million!
So what exactly are they forking out for? The crème de la crème of gestational carriers, that’s what!
“Most surrogates are already extremely well-vetted, but if you’re famous, your agency will give you the best of the best – and fast,” celeb blogger Perez Hilton, who has three children via surrogacy, tells the New York Post.
Indeed, Kim, 37, and Kanye, 40, join a host of A-listers including Nicole Kidman, Lucy Liu, Elizabeth Banks, Ricky Martin, Cristiano Ronaldo and Sarah Jessica Parker, who have turned to surrogacy to make their family dreams come true.
But Kim’s “different from other celebrities”, says Perez.
“Her demands, requirements and wants when it comes to choosing the surrogate aren’t like that of a normal celeb,” he continues. “For Kim, an agency probably jumped through hoops to make sure she had the top surrogate possible.”
No pressure, then...
‘A CELEB CHILD DOES NOT MEAN A CELEB BONUS’
Womb for hire
Getting the best doesn’t come cheap. The compensation for the women who celebs choose to carry their bubs varies from case-to-case.
But according to Growing Generations – the La-based surrogacy agency Neil Patrick Harris and his husband David Burtka used to find the surrogate who carried their twins Gideon and Harper, now six – it can end up costing between $150,000 and $170,000, when you factor in legal fees and procedural costs associated with creating and implanting the embryo.
If the celeb requires a donor egg, they’re looking at an additional $20,000. As for donor sperm, Scott Brown from California Cryobank says he knows of some celebs who have dropped big bucks to buy every sample given by their sperm donor to ensure their child wouldn’t have any random half-siblings.
In Kimye’s case, it’s believed their surrogate – a married, African-american mother-oftwo in her 20s – will pocket $58,000 for the nine-month gig. A further $88,000 will go to the agency that facilitated the surrogacy. They’ve also reportedly promised their surrogate another $6000 should she lose reproductive organs during the pregnancy or the labour.
Meanwhile, most contracts also have a clause written into them that states the surrogate will receive an extra $7600 in the event of multiple births, or if a caesarean delivery is required.
“During the pregnancy, surrogates are typically paid every four weeks, with monthly payments ranging between $2,500 and $3,800,” explains Teo Martinez, CEO and partner of Growing Generations.
“Two weeks after the birth, the surrogate receives a lump sum, equal to about a third of her total compensation. Just because the surrogate is carrying a celebrity child, does not mean she gets a celebrity ‘bonus’.”
The price of protection
Understandably, the privacy of the surrogate
– and the bub they’re carrying – is of paramount importance to the celeb.
Therefore, they’re more than happy to pay to ensure their anonymity remains.
Yep, the Wests have apparently dropped almost $2 million on 24/7 security for their carrier, with a source revealing, “There are six security guards on rotation duties, for nine months.”
Like Kimye, E! News host, Giuliana Rancic, 43, and her hubby Bill, 46, also kept their surrogate’s identity a secret while she was carrying their son, Edward Duke, now five, in 2012.
However, once he was born, the couple – who documented their surrogacy journey on their reality show Giuliana & Bill – introduced their surrogate, a French au pair named Delphine, to the world.
“Blurring her [face still] would make it look like we had something to hide,” Giuliana explained at the time.
Home sweet home
In a further bid to ensure their surrogate’s security, most Hollywood celebs request their agencies match them with a woman already living in the LA area.
While surrogacy fees as a whole are higher in California, celebs prefer to stay in Tinseltown, as they have better legal protection. And most important? Pre-birth orders that dictate that they – and not the surrogate – become the baby’s parents upon birth (instead of three days after birth like some other US states).
If the chosen carrier is from out of town, then the celeb is required to foot their entire relocation bill – which they’re more than happy to do!
“Nobody wants to be travelling with a three-day old baby on the plane,” explains Perez. “If you can afford to be there the second your surrogate goes into labour, and the second your baby is born, you would do that.”
Luckily for Kimye, their surrogate was already living just two hours away from them.
However, they’ve still moved her into a security-detailed home in a “nondescript middleclass neighbourhood”, for which they’re paying the rent.
On top of all these costs, there are other additional fees to cover – including doctor’s visits and medical bills throughout the pregnancy, as well as pampering for the surrogate.
“I know of one famous woman who basically turned her
surrogate into her little sister,” one Hollywood socialite tells the New York Post. “She pampered her the whole way through. She found a yoga guy and a chef – and doula, obviously – and gave the surrogate carte blanche access to them. This [surrogate] was delivering her a miracle and [the star] felt… extreme love for her.” And it’s the same for Kim. Sources say she wants her surrogate to maintain “an ideal eating regimen and diet”, so has been, er, forking out for a chef to cook three meals a day for her surrogate and her precious cargo. She’s also hired a nutritionist who changes her surrogate’s eating plan every 10 days. “[She and Kanye] want everything to be perfect and for the baby to be extremely healthy,” an insider tells People mag. The reality star is even planning a “party” for her third bub’s birth – so her whole family can be there, too. “She wants to share the experience with the people she loves,” a source tells UK paper The Sun. “So many people have been with Kim and Kanye on this journey, they want to share the special moment with them.”
An invaluable gift
But while they get to live a luxury life – for a while, at least! – most surrogates insist that isn’t the reason why they sign on.
“When you say you’re going to be a surrogate, the first thing anybody asks is, ‘How much money are you making?’” a two-time surrogate named Dayna tells People mag.
“It was never about the money... I didn’t want it to be a business transaction. I wanted it to be personal. I wanted to get enjoyment like I did out of it,” she continues. “I was giving someone something that potentially they couldn’t get without someone like us.”
Well, Keeks, even you can’t put a price on that feeling... n
‘If the two doctors, that I trust, have told me it wouldn’t be safe for me to get pregnant again, I have to listen to that,’ Kim said
After IVF heartbreak, Giuliana and Bill found joy thanks to their surrogate Delphine, who gave birth to their son Edward Duke in 2012 Elizabeth Banks, with sons Magnus and Felix, says her surrogate is still ‘like an auntie’ Ricky Martin’s sons Matteo and Valentino may soon have a sister! ‘AN AGENCY WILL GIVE YOU THE BEST, – AND FAST’
After IVF failed, Tyra Banks turned to surrogacy for son York
SJP and her twins Marion and Tabitha
Neil and David with twins Gideon and Harper Keith and Nicole with Sunday and Faith