Family Law at the Bottom of This Embryo Issue

When you get a divorce there can be repercussions that you never thought about. In one case that occurred in San Francisco, California, the couple that is getting a divorce had frozen embryos that have to be destroyed. The husband in the case requested that the contract that the two signed with the fertility clinic be honored. This agreement stated that all the embryos had to be thawed and destroyed if a divorce was imminent.

The 2010 marriage resulted in a contract with a fertility clinic and the contract appears to be very clear; upon divorce, the embryos will be destroyed. While this is so disturbing, the modern-day biological technology has the law on its side and will surely be acted upon. These cold legal principles have been determined by the court.

This is a pretty strong rebuke to the woman in the case who happens to be an anesthesiologist and a musician. She states that the embryos are hers and hers alone and this is her only chance at having a child at her age, which is 46. The judge allowed that the embryos may be hers, but she didn’t even prove that she was infertile. This hurt the woman’s motives and credibility.

The woman’s husband says that the divorce was extremely acrimonious and that he didn’t want to be tied to the woman for the rest of his life.

Are you caught up in a situation that seems untenable? Getting a divorce has so many aspects; Everything from property and debt distribution to child custody and alimony. This type of situation is so common in a divorce that isn’t friendly. Even a friendly separation can be hard and can have aspects that aren’t easy to get through.

Source: Los Angeles Times, “Divorced couple’s frozen embryos must be ‘thawed and discarded,’ judge rules,” Maura Dolan, Nov. 18, 2015

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