Donors Must Carefully Follow Law to Avoid Child Support Obligations

Single people, same-sex couples, and couples struggling with infertility often rely upon reproductive technologies in order to have children. Many of these technologies require donations of genetic material, be it sperm or eggs, from an outside source.

Many prospective parents use genetic material from an anonymous source, but others do not. The usual general goal when these technologies are used is that a parent or parents who are receiving the material will be the child’s parents, while the donor will not have any rights to custody or responsibilities for child support. However, if the laws regarding this type of donation are not strictly followed, a donor may find him or herself suddenly being ordered to support a child that he or she helped others create.

Court Ordered Sperm Donor to Undergo DNA Testing Which May Result in a Child Support Order

News Station KMBC reports that a judge has ordered a sperm donor to undergo genetic testing. When this genetic testing confirms that he is the genetic father of a child born as a result of his donation, it is likely he will be ordered to pay child support.

The man had responded to an online advertisement placed by a lesbian couple seeking to have a child. After one of the women had a child after the man’s donation, the couple broke up. The child’s genetic mother sought state health insurance for the child, and as a result the state of Kansas decided to try to force the child’s genetic father to pay child support.

Despite the fact that the man had signed away his parental rights and responsibilities, the state is being allowed to proceed because the man and the women to which he donated did not follow all of the technicalities of state law regarding sperm donation.

Illinois Law Regarding Sperm Donation and Parental Rights and Responsibilities

This situation shows how important it is to follow state law when considering sperm donation. One Illinois law states that children born as a result of artificial insemination shall be considered the natural child of a husband and wife who have requested and consented to the use of such a technique. This may work when the recipients of the donation are a married couple. However, that law says nothing about donations to unmarried couples or to a single person. The truly troubling part of the Illinois law, however, is a portion that mentions the sperm donation must be done under the supervision of a licensed physician. The law is the same in Kansas, and it is this rule that is leading to a donor being required to pay child support. Therefore, at least theoretically, the same situation could happen in Illinois.

Call Sullivan Taylor, Gumina & Palmer, P.C.

If you are considering sperm or egg donation, surrogacy, or adoption you should seek out the counsel of an experienced Illinois family law attorney. Call Sullivan Taylor, Gumina & Palmer, P.C. at (630) 756-5112. Whether you are the one seeking to use one of these methods to become a parent, or you are considering helping someone else, it is extremely important that you go into the process with a full understanding of both your rights, and responsibilities, in the event that a child is born.