BBC NEWS Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific
BBCi NEWS   SPORT   WEATHER   WORLD SERVICE   A-Z INDEX     

BBC News World Edition
 You are in: Health  
News Front Page
Africa
Americas
Asia-Pacific
Europe
Middle East
South Asia
UK
Business
Entertainment
Science/Nature
Technology
Health
Medical notes
-------------
Talking Point
-------------
Country Profiles
In Depth
-------------
Programmes
-------------
BBC Sport
BBC Weather
SERVICES
-------------
EDITIONS
Friday, 26 July, 2002, 11:13 GMT 12:13 UK
Court win for donor sperm children
legal generic
A judge ruled in favour of two sperm donor children
Children created with donated sperm have won an important legal ruling in their battle to discover more about their biological fathers.

However, the ruling as it stands does not force the identities of sperm donors being revealed without their consent.

A High Court judge decided that they were entitled to use Human Rights legislation to ask the courts for more information.

A final ruling, however, was delayed until the end of a government consultation into the issue.

At the moment the identities of sperm donors are completely confidential, although adult children are allowed to receive limited information on reaching 18.

The High Court challenge was made by 29-year-old Joanna Rose, who lives in Australia, and a mother on behalf of her six-year-old child, neither of whom can be named for legal reasons.

Both claim that human rights legislation should give them to opportunity to find out more about their anonymous biological parent.

Under the terms of the 1990 Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act, children who are born through donor insemination are entitled to information on the height, hair colour and race of their father when they reach 18.

However, Ms Rose is not entitled to those details because she was born before the legislation came into effect.

'Frustration'

Monica Carss-Frisk, barrister for Ms Rose, told the High Court: "She has for a long time sought to obtain more information about her donor in order to attempt to resolve her feelings of incompleteness, anger, frustration and hurt."

Ms Rose recently discovered the records relating to her conception had been destroyed, but wanted to continue with the case to give others more rights than she had.

Ms Carss-Frisk said that the parents of the six-year-old, who are from York, were trying to give their child all the information possible about her origins, prior to her 18th birthday.

"They are frustrated in so doing by the lack of information available to them to answer the inevitable questions their daughter has about her donor."

The court was not being asked to force compulsory disclosure of information, but to endorse a voluntary code.

 WATCH/LISTEN
 ON THIS STORY
Joanna Sawyer, Liberty lawyer
"This is not about identifying donors without their consent"
See also:

22 May 02 | Health
26 Jul 99 | Medical notes
Internet links:


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Links to more Health stories are at the foot of the page.


E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more Health stories

© BBC ^^ Back to top

News Front Page | Africa | Americas | Asia-Pacific | Europe | Middle East |
South Asia | UK | Business | Entertainment | Science/Nature |
Technology | Health | Talking Point | Country Profiles | In Depth |
Programmes