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Donor Conception and Co-Parenting

Donor conception is, as the name suggests, the conception of a child using either donated sperm or donated eggs.

When a child is born as a result of conception by a known donor, who has donated sperm or eggs, both the donor and the recipient of what is donated are the “co-parents”. Over the past few years there has been a significant increase in the number of single men and women, as well as gay and lesbian couples who have entered into co-parenting arrangements in order to have a child. A co-parenting agreement is an agreement reached between the parties hoping to conceive a child as to the way in which a child should be brought up.

Why enter into a co-parenting agreement?

Before a child is conceived, it is important that intended co-parents consider whether they are approaching matters with similar expectations, outlooks and ambitions. It is important that issues such as who will have Parental Responsibility, how the child’s time will be divided between the parties and any other important aspects concerning a child’s life are discussed and agreed upon before they finally agree to go ahead.

Experience shows that, where the parties enter into a co-parenting agreement, the scope for dispute and court proceedings later in the child’s life is limited.

The law relating to donor conception can be very complex, particularly if you are conceiving with a known donor. Please contact us if you would like advice or assistance tailored to your personal circumstances.