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Donor Agreements

Sperm Donation

Under New Jersey law, if a man wants to be a sperm donor and not a father, he has an obligation to deliver his donation to a doctor or clinic and sign a form that is issued by the state health department. If he does that, he will never be treated as a father and will have no legal relationship or responsibility for a child who may be conceived (unless he has a contract with the recipient to the contrary).

If the donor of sperm and the recipient(s) do not follow this procedure, then the “donor” is a father and not a donor and he will have parental rights and obligations to any child born. The only way to terminate those rights and obligations would be for the child to be adopted by the birth mother’s spouse or partner.There can be additional complications with interstate situations, as many state laws differ on sperm donation.

Sperm donors can be compensated, but compensation cannot be related to the sale of a child, which is illegal. Before any agreement to compensate a sperm donor is reached, consultation with an experience attorney is suggested.

Guston & Guston can help you clarify the law concerning sperm donation in New Jersey and the complications that can happen if the statutes are not followed and draft contracts when needed to address legal issues and the intentions of the parties when entering into sperm donation arrangements.

Egg Donation

Egg donation is not currently specifically addressed under New Jersey law. However, New Jersey generally applies the same principles applied in sperm donation situations, because egg donation, by its nature, occurs by a medical procedure. So, if a woman wants to be an egg donor and not a mother, she will undergo medication cycles and a medical retrieval procedure and sign releases with the doctor or clinic. If she does that, she will never be treated as a mother and will have no legal relationship or responsibility for a child who may be conceived (unless she has a contract with the recipient to the contrary, such as in surrogacy, or she herself is going to carry the child as in an IVF situation).

As egg donors can be compensated, but compensation cannot be related to the sale of a child, which is illegal, clinics often ask egg donors and recipients to have additional contracts and attorney review to deal with compensation and medical risk. Before any agreement to compensate a egg donor is reached, consultation with an experience attorney is suggested.

Guston & Guston can help you clarify the law concerning egg donation in New Jersey and work with intend recipients of egg donations from donors outside New Jersey. We can identify potential complications that can happen if the statutes are not followed and draft contracts when needed to address legal issues and the intentions of the parties when entering into egg donation arrangements.

Embryo Donation

When embryos are created and not used, many of them are available for donation to infertile couples. This gift can be significant because many people simply do not have the resources or insurance coverage to create their own embryos to use to create their own family.

Under New Jersey law, embryos are considered property and can be donated or gifted only with the consent of both owners, meaning, both parties who created the embryos. Even if the embryos were created with donor gametes, a married or civil union couple will still be the owners. Contracts signed when the embryos were created will have to be reviewed to determine who the owners are and whether there are clear agreements that can be followed.

Guston & Guston works with both embryos donors and intended recipients to draft donation agreements and navigate state parentage laws to assure that the donors will not be parents and that the recipients will be parents of any child born; that all issues of liability are discussed and negotiated and that any interstate issues are handled with the assistance of qualified attorneys from all states involved.