A recent case explores whether a sperm donor should be liable for child support.
Should a sperm donor be forced to pay child support? Yes, says a Nassau County family court judge. A man who said he donated sperm to a female co-worker in 1989 as a "friendly gesture" is legally considered the father and may have to pay child support for the college-bound teenager until the teen turns 21, according to a judge's ruling, reports Newsday.
The man was a physician at the same Nassau County hospital where the
child's mother was a resident. After learning the woman and her female
partner wanted to have a baby, Newsday says the man donated
his sperm and the woman gave birth on July 26, 1989. Married at the
time, the man agreed that he would not have any rights or benefits in
raising the child, but the verbal agreement was never put in writing,
according to court documents. That verbal agreement flew out the window
the mother later sued for child support.
Another sperm donor who's making headlines is Daryl Hendrix, a
Topeka man who is fighting a legal battle over parental rights because
his twin babies' mother says he is just the sperm donor. Local news
station KCTV reports that in 2004 a longtime female friend approached
Hendrix and asked if he would father a baby for her through artificial
insemination. He agreed, and she soon became pregnant with twins.
|They, too, put nothing in writing. Their relationship was amicable until she gave birth. When Hendrix went to the hospital to see the infants, he was turned away. The next day, the mother filed legal documents asking that Hendrix have no parental rights. Hendrix, too, went to court to fight for parental rights, and the battle is still ongoing.
To us, "sperm donor" and "father" mean two very different things. What do you think?