Rebel Wilson surprised us with her announcement she had a new daughter born via surrogate last week. On Instagram, the 42-year-old introduced her baby girl Royce Lillian, thanking her surrogate for “such grace and care.” Whilst unconfirmed, its likely Wilson’s daughter was born in California where the actress lives.
The news got us talking about surrogacy and the reality that Australia’s system forces most couples looking for a surrogate overseas. In Australia, surrogacy is altruistic – meaning whilst expenses are covered, surrogates are not allowed to accept a payment.
In countries like the US and Canada, commercial surrogacy is legal, allowing the surrogate mother to accept a fee for carrying the child in addition to medical bills.
We speak with surrogacy and donor-conception lawyer Sarah Jefford, a surrogate herself, to unpack the strict regulations making surrogacy so unpopular in Australia.
I’ve heard of some surrogates in California, for example, being paid $50,000 on top of all their expenses. Famous people probably pay a lot more than that. But for regular mums and dads in Australia who wanna go to America, they’re probably paying about $25,000 to $30,000 American for their surrogate.Sarah Jefford
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