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Egg Donors Legal Information

 
Once you have selected your egg donor, you will need to enter into a legally binding agreement with the donor, which sets forth each partyís rights and responsibilities. The attorney you select will draft the contract between you and the donor. The contract will include such things as the donorís compensation, medical testing and procedures, conduct of the parties, insurance issues, and parental rights. The attorney will also provide a legal clearance letter to the fertility clinic, advising them that all parties have consulted with an attorney and are fully advised of their legal rights and responsibilities.

Fees for the legal process will vary from attorney to attorney; however, typical costs range from $500 to $750 for the recipients and $250 to $300 for the donor. The recipients pay the donorís legal fees as well as their own legal costs, as part of the donorís compensation package. For all aspects of the egg donation process, finding the right professional is an individual process. Interview several to see with whom you feel most comfortable. You should be sure to know exactly what you are paying for, what services are being provided and who is providing these services and that all your legal questions and concerns are addressed.

Some frequently asked questions regarding the legality of egg donation include:
Q. How can I be sure that my identity remains confidential?
A. Recipient and Donor confidentiality is protected by legal contract. Typically identification numbers, first names, initials or pseudonyms are used to identify the parties rather than using full names. This ensures more privacy for everyone involved.

Q. Will we have the opportunity to meet each other?
A. In order to respect each otherís desire for privacy, in person or telephone meetings will not take place.

Q. What issues are addressed in the legal contract?
A. The contract addresses the process of egg donation, the time frame for the anticipated cycle, verification as to the accuracy of the personal health information given by the donor, legal responsibilities of both the donor and recipients, and the legal rights of all parties involved with regard to both the donation process and as to any child resulting from the donation.

Q. What are the legal responsibilities of egg donors and recipients?
A. While the laws vary from state to state, overall it is extremely clear that children born as a result of egg donation legally belong to the couple receiving the donated eggs. The recipients assume all moral, legal and financial responsibility for any children born from the egg donation. Egg donors have absolutely no parental rights or responsibility for the future welfare or support of these children.

The above is for information purposes only and is not meant to be a substitute for legal advice. TED insists all donors and recipients received legal consultation from a licensed attorney prior to any donation procedure. It is important that all parties to an egg donation agreement participate in psychological and legal counseling at all stages of diagnosis and treatment in order to assure that the parties have had an opportunity to appropriately examine and evaluate the risks involved in the medical procedures, as well as the legal ramifications of entering into the written Egg Donor Contract. One of the most critical elements of an Egg Donor Contract is the specific relinquishment of parental rights such that the child born under the agreement is considered the legal child of the Intended Parents and to establish that the Intended Parents "consent" to the reproductive treatment. Voluntary and informed consent must be obtained from an egg donor prior to the aspiration, which would include a thorough medical and psychological screening, genetic testing and social disease testing (including HIV). The psychological screening process plays an important role in obtaining free and voluntary consent for the aspiration of an egg.
 
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