Donors have an important role to play in the creation of many modern families. When it comes to an issue as important as your child’s future, it’s in everyone’s best interests to outline the specifics with the oversight of qualified legal counsel. As LGBT family law attorneys in Chicago, we help couples and individuals work out fair and binding agreements with their known donors.
What is a Donor Agreement?
A donor agreement is a legally binding document that illustrates the legal relationship between a known sperm or egg donor and the resulting child. Most donor contracts include language which excludes a donor from parental rights along with the responsibility of child support. A donor agreement should be created with the assistance of a qualified family law attorney in Chicago before conception takes place.
What Issues Can a Donor Agreement Address?
Creating a legally binding donor agreement can help ensure that all parties involved are on the same page. When a child is conceived through an informal donation process, outside of a doctor’s office and without legal documentation, custody rights can become murky. A formal donor agreement can help clarify expectations regarding:
- Legal parentage
- Confidentiality issues
- Visitation and contact with the child
- How samples can be stored and used
- When and how samples will be provided
- Safe sex practices leading up to sample collection
Beware of DIY Donor Agreements
Some couples or individuals step into informal agreements with their donors with the best intentions; however, the outcomes of these relationships are unpredictable. While there are many online donor agreement templates available online, these are best treated as a jumping off point for conversations about the key issues. Enlisting qualified legal counsel helps ensure that the specifics of your family’s circumstances are addressed correctly.
Second-Parent Adoption & Donor Agreements
It is advisable for LGBT non-biological parents to undergo a second-parent adoption following the birth of their child. This is because having your name on your child’s birth certificate alone does not guarantee full and equal legal rights as a parent. Creating a donor agreement can help alleviate questions about the donor’s legal parental rights, which may make the second-parent adoption process simpler.
Working With an LGBT Family Law Attorney in Chicago
If you’re researching donor agreements in Chicago, chances are you care deeply about the future of your new or growing family. Our attorneys are qualified to handle donor agreement conversations with professionalism and sensitivity. Contact us today to schedule an appointment where we can discuss your options.