By Steve Doughty Social Affairs Correspondent For The Daily Mail
Published: 20:33 EST, 14 June 2021 | Updated: 03:47 EST, 15 June 2021
A law firm has offered to fund surrogate mothers for staff wanting to start a family as part of a £45,000 package of fertility care measures.
The perk will cover not just IVF or egg-freezing treatment but also ‘gestational carriers’ as the country’s top law firms rush to provide pioneering medical benefits and to show their credentials as employers committed to diversity.
The offer to London-based solicitors employed by Cooley will see employees, including single men and women and gay couples, subsidised to have children, even to the point of surrogate mothers bearing their offspring.
A law firm has offered to fund surrogate mothers for its London-based solicitors with a £45k fertility care package covering IVF, egg-freezing or ‘gestational carriers’ (stock image)
It follows the offer from another firm to provide IVF and egg freezing, and another to pay for gender transition surgery.
Cooley, which is based in San Francisco and has clients among Silicon Valley tech businesses, has extended the fertility treatment package offer to London staff after it was made available in California offices.
The firm will reimburse staff up to £45,000 for fertility treatment.
It said it was a package for ‘personalised fertility care and family-forming support’ and that it was available to ‘single parents by choice and LGBTQ+ individuals and couples’ as well as employees with opposite sex spouses and partners.
The offer extends to adoption expenses.
Cooley senior lawyer Sascha Grimm said: ‘We are delighted to offer this industry-leading fertility and family-forming package to our London office.
Cooley law firm, based in San Francisco, extended the offer to its London-based solicitors who want to start a family after it was made available in California (file image of an ultrasound scan)
‘The firm supports all paths to parenthood and we are proud to enable our employees and partners to access the very best fertility and family-forming services available.’
She added that the package includes egg and sperm freezing, IVF, intrauterine insemination, adoption services and gestational carrier support.
Under English law, surrogate mothers can only be paid expenses by the person for whom they have a baby.
Miss Grimm said that Cooley also offers three months of paid parental leave for its employees and partners that are the ‘non-birthing parent’, as well as up to 26 weeks’ full pay for maternity and adoption, and enhanced shared parental pay.
Some City law firms are currently paying newly recruited trainees salary packages worth £50,000 a year, while newly qualified solicitors are likely to be earning £100,000.
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