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Assisted Conception

Single women, heterosexual couples or same sex female couples use donor conception to realise their dreams of becoming parents and creating a family.

Donor conception can take place using donated sperm, donated eggs or donated embryos.

Conception may take place using an anonymous or a known donor(s) through a fertility clinic. Sperm donation might happen more informally (e.g. at home) using a known or unknown donor.

What does the law say about assisted conception?

The law can be complex and the legal position is different depending upon whether the assisted conception has taken place via a fertility clinic or not.  If you use a clinic for assisted conception, you should ensure that the necessary consent forms are properly signed. If they are not, this can have major legal implications.

The issues to particularly consider regarding assisted conception are parental responsibility and the role that the various parties will play in the life of the child going forward. In our experience, failing to be clear about the expectations of all parties at the outset has the potential to cause huge difficulties later when it becomes obvious that the parties have a different understanding of what has been “agreed”.

 

How can The Modern Family Law Company help?

Our advice would be to discuss and agree the arrangements before any informal donor insemination takes place and record your agreement in writing. We can do this for you and an added benefit is that, having dealt with many similar situations, we will also prompt you to consider things that you might not necessarily think of yourselves. A written agreement is not binding, and a Judge would not automatically enforce its terms if the matter ended up in Court – because decisions about children are governed by what is in the child’s best interests. However, a written agreement is important evidence of what the parties thought at the time and will carry significant weight in the Court’s evaluation, even if it is not determinative.

Conception can be straightforward and quick. The legal ramifications can be complex and lengthy. If you choose to create your family via donor conception, we will talk you through the process and put in place the necessary legal steps before your little bundle of joy comes into the world.

If you are looking for advice because an assisted reproduction arrangement has gone wrong, you are in the right place. We have many years’ experience of advising and representing people in your position. We can’t necessarily offer you a “quick fix” but we promise you our expertise, our pragmatism and our care.

 

How will we support you?

We know how stressful disputes about children are. We will support you throughout the process, give you sound advice and always take care not to inflame an already difficult situation. If you need any extra help e.g. counselling or therapy we will refer you to one of our trusted partners.

 

How can I find out more about the law that applies to assisted conception?

Please Get in Touch via our contact page and we'll be delighted to provide further information.


Further Information

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