Having a family isn’t always easy. For some couples, the right decision includes assisted reproduction. This includes the use of a donor sperm or ova in order to induce pregnancy. However, along with this decision come certain decisions. Before making any decisions it’s imperative that a couple understands the legalities involved with assisted reproduction.
Who is Considered the ‘Natural Parent?‘
Under California law, once conception occurs using the sperm or ova of a donor, and the intended parent provides consent, that intended parent becomes the natural parent. It’s important that the consent of the intended parent is in writing and is signed by the mother and the intended parent.
However, if consent is not given in writing, it doesn’t mean that a court can’t find for the intended parent. When there is clear and convincing evidence that the mother and intended parent orally agreed prior to conception, the court can find that the intended parent is the natural parent and will be treated as such under the law.
When is a Donor a Natural Parent?
Donors, who provide semen to a sperm bank or doctor’s office that uses it in assisted reproduction by someone aside from the spouse of the donor, are not the natural parent under the law. This is unless donor and the mother have an agreement in writing prior to conception.
However, if the donor doesn’t provide his semen to a sperm bank or doctor’s office and he and the mother agree in writing prior to conception, that the donor would not be a parent, the law will not treat him as a natural parent. But once again, if a court finds by clear and convincing evidence that the donor and mother had an oral agreement that he would not be a parent, he will not be treated as a natural parent.
If a donor provides ova for use in assisted reproduction and the person who is using it is not her parent or spouse, the donor is not considered the natural parent under the law. Yet, the court can find through sufficient evidence that the donor and mother wanted the donor to be the natural parent.
The Law Office of Ronald L. Freeman Helps Those in California Who Are Dealing with Family Law Issues
If you or a loved one has questions about any family law issues, such as parental rights or custody, the outcome of these issues can have life-long effects on you and your family. That’s why it is so important to consult with a knowledgeable and experienced San Bernardino and Riverside family law attorney who understands related family law issues and can help to walk you through the whole process. At the Law Office of Ronald L. Freeman, our San Bernardino and Riverside family law attorneys will work to collect the proper evidence to help your case. To learn more or to schedule a free consultation, contact us today!