Pregnancy via a sperm / egg donor

Conceiving with a donor in the UK or abroad can be a great family building option no matter what your circumstances. The law in this area is designed to be supportive but can inadvertently treat the wrong people as the parents (for example, a parent who is not biologically related but wishes to raise the child may be ousted in favour of a donor). We can ensure that your nuclear family, however that is made up, is protected by helping you set things up in the right way from the outset or by resolving the legal position retrospectively or assisting with a dispute.

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Using a known donor

Conceiving with a sperm or egg donor who is known to you is a popular choice for families who wish their child to have knowledge of their genetic history. Each family dynamic is different in terms of the level of involvement their donor has, with some acting as a full time parent and others as a distant family friend. Whatever your intentions it is important to set things up in the right way to ensure that your family is protected and everyone is in agreement about their relative roles and status. These arrangements can work incredibly well, with a number of adults willing to enrich a child’s life. However, sometimes things don’t go to plan and when this happens it is important to understand the underlying law and what your options are. We can help at both stages, from setting the foundations of your arrangement to advising if a dispute arises.

Using an unknown or anonymous donor

Many prospective parents opt to conceive with an unknown clinic donor and will take advantage of the wide choice now available in the UK and overseas. Although an unknown clinic donor will not have any status or potential to acquire a parental role it is important to ensure that any non-biological parent has the legal rights required to raise your child. If you are an unmarried same sex or heterosexual couple you will need to take additional steps before conception, or alternatively go through a post-birth adoption process, to achieve equal parental status. We can help to advise you on the measures necessary to protect your family, as well as provide guidance on the information rights available to you and your child in respect of your donor.

Our services – specialist advice at any stage of your arrangement, drafting a donor agreement, help with disputes, specialist Wills