Sperm Donor / Egg Donor / Embryo Donor Agreements

Providing Legal Protection for Everyone Involved

Anonymous vs. Known Donors: Generally, a person who anonymously provides sperm or eggs or embryos to a bank or private facility gives up all legal and other rights over the biological children produced from his or her biological material as part of the donation. These are called anonymous donors (even if your donor agrees to have his or her contact information shared with the child when he/she turns 18, that is still considered an “anonymous” donor as you don’t know the identity of that person right now. 

Known Donors: However, when you know the identity of your donor or donors, things get a bit more complicated. It is generally best (and almost always required if you’re engaging in physician assisted reproduction) that a donor contract be put in place before the donations take place. 

Donor Contracts: A donor contract generally addresses all legal issues related to the donation and protects each party’s rights and responsibilities prior to any donation or transfer taking place.

Donors may or may not be paid for the donation, but even in unpaid arrangements, expenses are often reimbursed. If the donor is known, it is important to have an agreement in which the donor relinquishes all rights to any embryo or child that may be created from the donated sperm or egg or embryo. It is also important to ensure that the intended parents will not sue the donor for child support or expect the child to inherit from the donor in the event of his or her death. 

It is also important to address issues like:

  • Testing of the donor for conditions that can be transmitted to the recipient or the child 
  • Sharing of information by the donor as it relates to genetic background and health history
  • What will happen to frozen eggs, sperm, or embryos if the recipients’ family is complete, if one or both recipients die, if the recipients break up, etc. 
  • Confidentiality and who and what third parties, social media, and the child may be told about the situation 
  • Etc, etc, etc 

Becoming an egg donor or sperm donor for someone you know, such as a family member or friend, can be an exciting and special time for all parties involved. But even in close relationships, formalizing a documented agreement prior to any donations can help make sure that everyone understands their rights and obligations, and that there are no surprises, particularly after a pregnancy has been achieved or a birth has occurred.

If you’re contemplating using a known egg, sperm, or embryo donor OR you’re considering becoming a known egg, sperm, or embryo donor, come and join our village! Contact us at 919-525-2854 today to discover how we can help.