Kansas case seeks child support from sperm donor

A recent Kansas case has sparked a lot of controversy over whether or not a sperm donor should be required to pay child support. In the case, the sperm donor answered a Craigslist advertisement placed by a same-sex couple requesting a sperm donor. The couple wanted to save money and not go through the expensive artificial insemination process. Instead, the couple opted for an at-home artificial insemination kit that anyone can buy online for under $50 – far less than the thousands of dollars it can cost to have the insemination done by a doctor. In an attempt to protect themselves, the parties did sign a private agreement whereby the sperm donor relinquished all rights to the child.

After the child was born the same sex couple separated. One parent lost her job and sought public assistance to help her make ends meet. In Kansas, like most states, when public assistance is being expended to help a child, the state seeks to establish child support to recoup the costs being paid by the state.

In this case, the state looked for the biological father to establish support. Kansas has a law with regard to artificial insemination that provides that a sperm donor is not legally the father as long as a doctor handles the artificial insemination. It does not address situations in which the people attempt to do it themselves. Because the parties did not use a doctor or an attorney, the sperm donor is legally the father, regardless of the private agreement. The state is requesting back support of $6,000 and ongoing child support from the donor.

The law in North Carolina

North Carolina’s law on artificial insemination states: “Any child or children born as the result of heterologous artificial insemination shall be considered at law in all respects the same as a naturally conceived legitimate child of the husband and wife requesting and consenting in writing to the use of such technique.” While North Carolina’s law does not require the process to be done by a medical professional, it does require the parents to be “husband and wife” which may bring issues for same-sex couples who wish to have a child through artificial insemination.

The lesson learned of this story is that sperm donors should not enter into any agreement without contacting an attorney. A private agreement will not guarantee that child support will be waived. Child support is intended for the benefit of the child and all states take the support of children very seriously.

North Carolina child support lawyer

If you have a question about child support, contact an experienced North Carolina child support attorney. A lawyer will be able to explain your rights and responsibilities with regard to support.