Sperm donation is becoming increasingly common, and there are millions of children across the world who have been born as a result of the practice. As a result of this, the question of parental rights is becoming increasingly common, and we’re seeing cases come through the courts more frequently than ever.

With this in mind, I’m going to explore the issue in this article. As always, the information I’ve outlined here is purely to give you some knowledge about the topic. Make sure that you speak to your local family lawyer such as BOE Lawyers, before you make any major decisions.

What is sperm donation?

Basically, sperm donation occurs when a man donates his sperm to another couple so that they can have a child. Usually, this is done through sperm banks or other medical institutions, but it doesn’t have to be.

There have been cases in the past where people have donated their sperm to friends or acquaintances knowingly, allowing them to have a child.

Situations like this cause the most controversy when the question of parental rights and responsibilities comes up, so it’s important to speak to family lawyers so that you are aware of the legalities if you’re considering donating sperm.

Can a sperm donor be considered a legal parent?

Well, the simple answer is that yes, sperm donors can be considered legal parents and can be responsible for the resulting child – in some cases.

If you have donated sperm anonymously through a sperm bank or other medical institution then you probably don’t have too much to worry about. You identity should be secure, and you won’t have any parental responsibilities. But, at the same time, you al  so won’t have any parental rights if you go down this path – even though the resulting children are biologically yours.

On the other hand, those who knowingly donate sperm to close friends or acquaintances may have parental rights and responsibilities. A recent court case in the Australian high court ruled that a man who donated sperm to his gay friend so that she could have a child has parental rights over their daughter – even though he hasn’t acted as a father.

However, the man was said to have an “ongoing role in the child’s financial support, health, education, and general welfare”. This could have influenced the decision.

If you’d like to read more about this case and its results then you can find the full story here.

Final word

Ultimately, the parental rights of sperm donors is something of a controversial topic which is continually evolving. In some cases, sperm donors will have parental rights – and responsibilities – but in others they won’t.

If you’re considering donating sperm in an unconventional situation – such as to a friend or someone else you know personally – then your best option will be to speak with a lawyer to determine your best course of action.

It’s important to make sure that you’re legally protected, otherwise you might find yourself facing things like child support payments and other financial burdens in the future. Above all, understand that it’s something of a controversial topic without clear legal guidelines.