Rights of Sperm Donors

Avatar for Cmmelissa
iVillage Member
Registered: 11-13-2008
Rights of Sperm Donors
Thu, 08-22-2013 - 1:37pm

Actor Jason Patric testified in CA regarding the rights of sperm donors.  He conceived a son through IVF with a former girlfriend, and they disagree on how much involvement he should have in the child's life.  She says that he was just a sperm donor, while he alleges that he always intended to be a father to the boy.  

Patric first took his case to state lawmakers after a judge ruled that he was to be classified strictly as a sperm donor and that he had no paternal rights over Gus — the decision was based on a 2011 state law specifying that sperm donors have no legal parental rights. 

“Every single one of us was barred from proving our parentage by this loophole in a law,” Patric said. “We all tried to become parents. We went through great lengths to become parents. I had surgery to become a parent.”

Since the initial verdict, California state Sen. Jerry Hill, who wrote the 2011 state law, has introduced a new bill, SB115, which would allow sperm donors who conceive a child through artificial insemination to establish parental rights if they can prove a certain level of involvement in that child’s life.

"This is truly about the modern family, and it has raised questions and issues for the courts that haven't kept up with changing times," Hill told the Associated Press.

Read more: http://usnews.nbcnews.com/_news/2013/08/13/20007157-actor-jason-patric-rights-of-sperm-donors-take-center-stage-in-california?lite

I think this story emphasises the importance of having legal contracts in place before entering an arrangement such as this.  Would you be comfortable with the proposed bill?  

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-29-2005
Wed, 08-28-2013 - 4:50pm

I think the key here is this phrase: "conceived a son through IVF with a former girlfriend" ... in other words, he was part of a couple TTC, and therefore he should have the rights of any other father who separates from his baby's mother.  If they were boyfriend/girlfriend, sleeping with each other (even though that isn't the way the baby was conceived), and planning this pregnancy together, then he isn't just a "sperm donor."

Someone who donates to a sperm bank, doesn't have a pre-existing relationship with the mother, doesn't have any contact with the mother, is an entirely different case.  I would be very against an anonymous sperm donor being able to force his way into the life of my child and my family because of his status as donor. If you want a role in your child's life, have a child with someone you know, or hire a surrogate to bear your child, or adopt ... don't donate to a sperm bank and then look for the child later.


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