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Surrogacy in Greece | Programs | Costs | Law | Fertility Clinics

Surrogacy in Greece | Programs | Costs | Law | Fertility Clinics

Surrogacy in Greece: the Intended Parents’ Guide on Legislation, Programs, Costs, and Leading Fertility Clinics 

Sometimes, surrogacy is the only way for couples and singles to fulfill the desire to have children. However, in many countries, it is either prohibited or there is still no legal framework to support it. A few countries have no legislation to govern surrogacy arrangements. Thus, they are neither legal nor illegal, imposing significant uncertainty for those involved. This legal ambiguity can lead to numerous challenges and ethical dilemmas, including issues regarding parental rights, financial compensation for surrogates, and the well–being of the child. Greece is one of the exceptions — surrogacy has been legal there since 2004. It is also one of the unique European destinations where single women facing infertility issues have the same access to surrogacy services as married and unmarried hetero couples. It is also one of a few countries where surrogacy arrangements are possible, legitimate, and regulated. 

This guide is designed to be your comprehensive resource on surrogacy in Greece. We will cover everything you need to know, including the legal aspects, eligibility criteria, available programs, cost considerations, and leading fertility clinics offering surrogacy. 

Surrogacy Law in Greece 

Altruistic gestational surrogacy and egg donor arrangements are legal in Greece for residents, international heterosexual couples (married or unmarried), and single female parents who cannot conceive and carry a pregnancy to term. Established by Article 1458 of the Greek Civil Code, this legal framework offers a secure path to parenthood for infertile couples seeking surrogacy in Europe.

While specific laws govern surrogacy in Greece, the core legislation is Article 1458 of the Greek Civil Code. This article was introduced by Law 3089/2002 (article 8) and later updated by Law 4272/2014 (article 17).

A significant change introduced by Law 4272/2014 (article 17) allows both applicants (intended parents) and surrogate mothers to reside outside of Greece. This opens up surrogacy in Greece to a wider range of international couples and single women.

One of the most advantageous aspects of Greek surrogacy law is the judicial authorization required before any medical procedures. This ensures clarity and security for all parties involved. The legal process typically takes 3–4 months and involves four key steps:

  • Pre–pregnancy Determination of Parental Rights and Establishment of Intended Parents: Unlike some jurisdictions, Greece settles the legal rights of the intended parents and the surrogate mother upfront. A district court hearing establishes parental rights through a court decision that authorizes the surrogacy process. This decision also clarifies that the surrogate has no legal claim to the child. 
  • A Wait for Finality: The court’s decision is published, followed by a 30–day waiting period. This ensures the decision becomes final and cannot be challenged legally. Only then can procedures like in vitro fertilization or cryotransfer proceed.
  • Clear Expectations for All: For married surrogates, husband consent is mandatory. The court judgment will confirm everyone’s eligibility and declare any child born through surrogacy the legal child of the intended parents. Additionally, the surrogate cannot withdraw her consent after the embryo transfer.
  • Streamlined Birth Registration: Following the court order, the clinic directly registers the newborn under the intended parents’ names at birth. The birth certificate reflects this legal parenthood.

According to Greek law (Article 1464 of the Civil Code), the woman who receives judicial authorization to be an intended mother is legally presumed to be the child’s mother, and her husband or partner (or de–facto partner) is presumed to be the father. This legal parenthood for the intended parents is established from the moment of conception. This law further reinforces the clarity of the court judgment and ensures the surrogate has no legal claim to the child after the embryo transfer.

Recent Changes to Assisted Reproduction in Greece

A recent amendment to Greek law (Law 4958/2022, article 2) offers two key changes for women seeking assisted reproduction:

  • Increased Age Limit: The maximum age for women to undergo assisted reproduction procedures, including surrogacy, has been raised from 50 to 54 years old.
  • Egg Cryopreservation Consent: Spousal consent is no longer required for women to cryopreserve their eggs. Additionally, divorced women can now use previously vitrified oocytes without their ex–husband’s consent.

Important Considerations for Older Mothers

For women aged 50 or above, any assisted reproduction treatment, including surrogacy, requires approval from the National Authority of Assisted Reproduction in Greece. This ensures additional safeguards are in place for older mothers.

Compensation for Surrogate Mothers in Greece

While Greece only allows altruistic surrogacy (no payments beyond expenses), there are some exceptions. Article 2 of Ministerial Decision No. 36 (16 Apr 2008) allows surrogate mothers to receive compensation for:

  • Lost wages due to pregnancy and surrogacy.
  • Reimbursement for expenses incurred if unemployed (capped at the equivalent of her potential employee salary based on qualifications).

The total compensation a surrogate mother can receive is capped at €10,000.

Eligibility criteria for prospective mothers

According to the current Greek legislation, surrogacy is only permitted to women who cannot carry a pregnancy due to medical reasons, such as:

  • Congenital absence of the uterus (Rokitansky syndrome). 
  • Surgically removed uterus (hysterectomy). 
  • Multiple intrauterine adhesions (Asherman’s syndrome).
  • Severe endometrial adhesions.
  • Medical conditions that make pregnancy dangerous for a life (i.e., congenital heart disease, aortic stenosis, blood clotting disorders, hypertension, autoimmune disease, kidney disease, chronic renal failure, etc.).
  • Previous high–risk pregnancy (i.e., developing placenta accreta, gestational hypertension, gestational diabetes, birth defects or genetic conditions in the fetus, stillbirth).
  • Cases of previous multiple IVF failures or multiple miscarriages. 

Prospective mothers seeking surrogacy in Greece are eligible only after undergoing a medical evaluation to confirm the medical reasons preventing pregnancy and receiving a medical certificate from a qualified physician. Additionally, they must meet age requirements and undergo psychological evaluation.

Legislation on Egg Donation

Egg donation in Greece is legal and altruistic. There is a limit for continuing to donate the oocytes: a maximum of 10 children can be born per egg donor. Greek legislation offers three options for donor anonymity:

  • Anonymous: Clinics can disclose non–identifying characteristics like skin color, hair color and texture, weight and height, and educational background, but the donor’s identity remains confidential.
  • Open ID: The donor’s identity is known to the recipient couple from the start.
  • ID Release after 18 Years: The donor’s identity remains confidential until the child reaches adulthood (18 years old) and can then be released upon request.

In either option, the donor doesn’t have the right to know the recipient’s or child’s ID. Donors and recipient couples are obliged to sign consent forms to protect the rights of both parties.

According to law, egg donors should be between 18 and 35 years old. Although egg donation is allowed until age 35, most donors are in their early to middle 20s. Greek law and HFEA guidelines mandate a thorough screening process for egg donors. This includes:

  • Physical examination.
  • Testing for sexually transmitted diseases such as AIDS, Hepatitis B and C, syphilis, gonorrhea, etc.
  • Genetic screening (molecular karyotype) to rule out inheritable diseases.
  • Blood type and Rh factor testing.
  • Ethnicity–specific tests for conditions like Cystic fibrosis, thalassemia, sickle cell disease, etc.
  • Family history assessment for severe illnesses.

Potential egg donors who have a family history of serious illnesses such as heart disease, kidney disease, lung disease, diabetes, cancers, life–threatening allergies, and mental illness are excluded after completing the prescreening or screening process.

Greek Law on Sperm Donation 

Sperm donation is legal and altruistic in Greece. Greek legislation offers the same three options for sperm donor anonymity: anonymous, open ID, or ID release after the child reaches 18 Years. Each sperm donor can be the biological father of a maximum of 10 children. 

If the donor chooses to be anonymous, the clinic will disclose non–identifying information such as the color of the skin, eyes, hair, educational background, and any other features that may be important for the intended parents to make the final decision.

According to law, sperm donors should be between 18 and 40 years old and have completed medical screening on sexually transmitted diseases, blood type and Rh factor testing, genetic analysis, karyotyping, and cystic fibrosis testing. Many clinics go a step further, requiring additional tests like DNA fragmentation to ensure sperm quality. DNA fragmentation test is routinely performed on all specimens before and after cryopreservation so the clinicians can detect any possible alteration on the DNA to ensure the highest possible pregnancy rate for the prospective parents seeking donation. Donors with a history of serious illnesses are excluded.

Egg and Sperm Donation or Using the Donated Embryo in Surrogacy

There is no requirement in Greece for a genetic connection between the intended parents and the child; thus, the embryos can be created using the donor’s oocytes fertilized with a donor’s sperm. Alternatively, to double donation, it is possible to use the donated embryo and initiate cryotransfer instead of starting an IVF round.

While double donation and embryo donation offer an inclusive path to parenthood (especially in cases when the prospective parent(s) cannot provide the reproductive material to share their DNA with an embryo), there are potential legal considerations, especially if neither intended parent has a genetic connection to the child.

For cases with no genetic link, the prospective parent’s (parents)’ home country may have an issue with this and not grant citizenship or recognize the legal parentage. This may be the case for couples or single persons who don’t fulfill the legal requirements stipulated by their national legislation (e.g., securing a genetic link via DNA with at least one of the intended parents (mother or father), as required by British legislation). Because of these potential complications, it is recommended for intended parents considering either double donation or embryo donation to consult with legal professionals in both Greece and their home country. This will ensure a smooth surrogacy process and avoid any surprises regarding citizenship or legal parenthood.

Surrogate Mother Qualifications 

To be eligible to become a surrogate mother in Greece, the following criteria must be met by the applicant:

  • Age: Prospective surrogates must be between 25 and 35 years old. This ensures a healthy pregnancy for both the surrogate and the baby.
  • Physical and Psychological Health: Thorough medical and psychological evaluations are mandatory to confirm the physical and mental well–being necessary to carry a pregnancy.
  • Prior Experience: Greek law typically requires a surrogate to have given birth at least once without complications, which demonstrates a successful pregnancy history.
  • Number of C–Sections: In most cases, having no more than two prior cesarean sections is a requirement.
  • Marital Status: While a surrogate’s marital status isn’t a direct barrier, written consent from a husband is necessary if she is married.
  • Court Approval: In Greece, court approval is mandatory before any surrogacy arrangement proceeds. This ensures all parties understand and agree to the legal implications.

The prospective parents who have a close friend or a relative wishing to be their gestational carrier can still proceed with the surrogacy arrangement, but court approval is still mandatory in Greece. This ensures all parties understand and agree to the legal implications, regardless of their personal connection.

Importing/Shipping Gametes and Embryos to Greece

Cryopreserved oocytes (eggs), sperm, and vitrified embryos can be shipped directly to licensed Greek clinics from the clinic where they are currently stored. However, there are potential restrictions on importing these reproductive materials from countries outside the European Union (EU).

Sex Selection of an Embryo

Gender selection is allowed only to prevent the transmission of a serious genetic disease. Sex selection of an embryo for family balancing is prohibited.

Surrogacy Programs

When considering surrogacy in Greece, various program options are available, depending on your needs and preferences. These programs can be facilitated through an IVF clinic directly or with the help of an agency, either local or international.

Program options may include:

  • Gestational surrogacy only 
  • Egg donation and gestational surrogacy
  • Frozen embryo transfer (FET) and gestational surrogacy
  • Guaranteed gestational surrogacy with egg donation (offered by some agencies)
  • Some agencies may also offer additional programs such as guaranteed baby programs, premium egg donation options, or programs with traveling egg donors that guarantee live births.

Surrogacy Cost in Greece

Surrogacy costs in Greece can vary significantly depending on the type of arrangement you choose. Agency–facilitated surrogacy journeys typically range between $50,000 and $100,000, offering a more streamlined experience with the agency handling many logistical aspects. Opting for independent surrogacy can potentially be less expensive but requires more involvement from the intended parents in coordinating various services.

IVF Surrogacy

A single–attempt program using the intended mother’s eggs and the intended father’s sperm to generate an IVF embryo is available for $50,000. Some packages may include at least one cryotransfer backup if the fresh transfer doesn’t lead to embryo implantation. 

Multiple IVF Cycles: More comprehensive packages start at $57,000 and can reach $69,000. These may include two rounds of IVF to create embryos, along with up to three attempts at transferring embryos to the surrogate’s uterus.

Surrogacy with a Local Egg Donor

A single–attempt program with a Greek Egg Donor pricing starts at $60,000 and ranges to $69,000.

Bundles at a higher cost of $70,000 to $75,000 may include a tandem IVF cycle using the prospective mother’s and the donor’s oocytes or several transfer trials (one fresh and up to three or unlimited cryotransfers).

Single women and couples in need of Caucasian, Latino, Indian, Arab, or donor of another ethnicity may opt for frozen or fresh donation. Using vitrified donor eggs in IVF is less expensive compared to initiating a cycle with a traveling donor. 

Surrogacy with a Traveling Egg Donor

Aspiring parents seeking a traveling egg donor will incur additional expenses beyond the base program cost (which typically covers IVF and egg donation fees). The average cost for international egg donation varies depending on agency fees, legal fees, escrow management, insurance, the donor’s travel expenses (including accommodation), screening, and compensation, but it typically falls around $25,000. This excludes IVF clinic costs and any unforeseen complications.

Costs can reach $36,000, rising to $69,000 for premium options like selecting a donor with specific qualifications or a package with additional services (such as DuoStim and two egg retrievals within one cycle, tandem cycle (synchronization of intended mother’s and donor’s cycle, or a Live Birth Guarantee).

Guaranteed Surrogacy with a Local/Other Ethnicity Egg Donor

The cost for a Live Birth Guarantee package fluctuates between $79,000 and $84,000 for journeys with a local donor and $89,000 to $100,000 for other ethnicity egg donor (traveling premium donor, live birth guarantee).

Surrogacy Only with Existing Vitrified Embryos

For intended parents who already have frozen embryos (through IVF or another program), Greece offers surrogacy using these embryos. This option, known as cryotransfer with gestational surrogacy, typically costs between $39,000 and $50,000.

Cost of Independent Surrogacy

Intended parents who prefer an independent, also known as “private” surrogacy route, have access to clinics offering such services. 

Single women and couples applying directly to Greek fertility clinics should consider the following fees associated with their journeys:

  • Screening costs: starting at €3,000 and up to €11,000. 
  • Legal fees: starting at €6,000 and higher. 
  • IVF fees or embryo shipping fees: depends on the case*.
  • Medication fees: the average price tag varies from €2,000 to €3,000 per cycle.
  • Insurance fees: €3,000 and higher. 
  • Gestational surrogate reimbursement: up to €10,000.
  • Other fees vary. 

IVF Treatment Cost:

  • IVF with own oocytes and the partner’s sperm (Single Stim protocol, cleavage–stage or blastocyst–stage embryo transfer): €2,900–€4,600+.
  • Duo–cycle IVF with prospective mother’s oocytes and the partner’s sperm (two IVF cycles within a year, Single Stim protocol for each cycle, blastocyst transfer): €5,000+.

Egg Donation IVF Cost:

  • IVF with egg donation (Single Stim protocol, one egg donation cycle, some programs guarantee one or two blastocysts, and up to two transfer trials using fresh embryo for the first transfer and frozen for the second, or frozen embryos in both transfers): €4,600 EUR–€6,900.
  • IVF with egg donation “Enhanced” program with a guarantee of having more than three top–quality blastocysts: €6,200–€9,900.
  • IVF with egg donation “Premium” program with a guarantee of two exclusive egg donors, more than six blastocysts, and up to three transfer trials: €10,900. 

Sperm Donation IVF Cost:

  • IVF using the donor’s sperm (Single Stim protocol, fresh or cryopreserved donor’s sperm): €4,000–€4,900.

Disclaimer: The costs are indicative and subject to change; may not cover screenings, medications, preimplantation genetic testing, vitrification of the remaining embryos, and additional transfer trials. Consult directly with Greek fertility clinics for the most up–to–date pricing information.

Greece’s Leading Fertility Clinics

Greece hosts more than 39 fertility clinics, offering sophisticated fertility treatment services to single women and couples. While nearly all these clinics provide in vitro fertilization (IVF), only a select few specialize in initiating the medical aspects of surrogacy journeys. This specialization often translates to experience in handling the unique medical requirements of surrogacy, such as surrogate screenings, synchronized cycles for egg retrieval and transfer, hormonal medication protocols for both the intended parent(s) and surrogate, and preimplantation genetic testing (PGT) for embryo selection.

When selecting a clinic to work with, consider their programs and success rates, the cost transparency, donor pool (if applicable), and open communication.

Here are four of Greece’s leading IVF clinics:


Final Note:

Choosing the right surrogacy clinic in Greece is a vital step in your journey to parenthood. By considering the factors mentioned above, researching the legalities, and utilizing available resources, you can increase your chances of a successful and positive surrogacy experience.


Taking the Next Step:

We encourage you to research further, consult with legal professionals, and connect with leading surrogacy clinics in Greece. With careful planning and informed decision–making, you can turn your dream of parenthood into reality through surrogacy in Greece.



The information provided is for general knowledge only and shouldn’t be considered medical advice. Always consult with a qualified healthcare professional for personalized guidance.

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