Ask a Family Law Attorney: Sperm Donors and Child Support in CA

Family Law AttorneysIf you’re thinking about or discussing sperm donation with your partner or another party, it’s important that you are thorough with your research as you learn about the process of sperm donation as well as any ensuring legal responsibilities and ramifications. One of the biggest questions when it comes to sperm donation in CA involves child support. Namely, does child support apply in cases where a sperm donor was part of the equation?

For today’s post, we’re taking a quick look at this complex issue and the way it interacts with CA family law. 

Sperm Donations via a Licensed Clinic

Many people choose to use a sperm donor, or donate their sperm, based on a variety of circumstances. Likewise, the donation itself can be either done via a licensed clinic, or privately. 

With licensed sperm donation facilities, the answer is simple: donors are protected from any child support obligations. For the most part, clinics are able to guarantee complete anonymity as to the donor’s identity, and donors are not even notified if or when their sperm is used. As far as CA family law is concerned, sperm donors via licensed clinics have zero parental obligations.

Sperm Donations Arranged Privately

Donations done via privately arranged means are subject to somewhat different laws and regulations. Like with donations via clinics, sperm donations arranged privately, or done via a contract with relatives or strangers come with no expectations of parental obligations from the donor. 

Where things get trickier is if the donor decides to request custody or visitation rights down the line. As the family law courts use genetics as the basis for determining the legal parent, a donor could be entitled to parental rights under CA family law. In these cases, it is possible for the donor to sue for these rights, but this in turn can entitle the other party to request or sue for child support. 

Our Experienced Family Law Attorneys are Here to Help

While many instances of sperm donation are simple affairs, the potential for complications is always present. Given that these issues involve custody of a child and parents/donors who may not see eye to eye, the dispute could spiral into a major legal hurdle. 

That said, we at R & S Law Group, LLP understand that every case is different and requires its own strategizing and approach. Learn more about how we can help you navigate these and other related custody and family law matters. Call us at (949) 825-5245 to schedule a free initial consultation today!