Egg and sperm donation between family members is increasing in the UK.  Inter-family donation retains a genetic link between the recipient and the child when the recipient's eggs or sperm cannot successfully conceive a child.  It represents a 'known quantity' in family building in contrast to arms-length donation using an egg or sperm bank.  

Inter-family donation can include:

  • Mother to daughter egg donation (for example if a child is diagnosed as infertile)
  • Sister to sister egg donation (e.g. if a sister develops cancer)
  • Father to son sperm donation (e.g. if a son has sperm production difficulties or blockages)
  • Brother to brother sperm donation (e.g. if a brother has sperm antibodies)

Inter-family donation is a unique and special form of family building.  Complex and challenging legal, practical and emotional issues arise with family relationships, including: management of information about the child's biological origins, potential for family members to donate eggs or sperm to help a relative.

Mixing eggs and sperm between genetically related people raises complex issues.  The mixing of eggs and sperm (insemination, IVF or ICSI) between close relatives (for example brother and sister) is subject to restrictions. 

How we can help

  • We provide confidential, supportive legal advice on:
  • fertility law in the UK 
  • donor conception law in the UK
  • acquisition of legal parenthood for a child
  • acquisition and exercise of parental responsibility for a child
  • legal risk analysis in your situation
  • financial provision for a child
  • resolution of a dispute about arrangements for a child
  • managing relationship breakdown
  • preparation of specialist 'Family Proof' Wills

To find out more about our legal services click here.

Gain an understanding of wider issues in development of and current issues surrounding fertility, parenting, surrogacy and family law in the UK and internationally. Click here to visit our Media and Publications section. 

Find out more about assisted conception, inter-family donation and family law in the UK in our resource hub.

Arrange an introductory meeting with Louisa Ghevaert, Partner and Head of the Fertility and Parenting Team at Michelmores: email louisa.ghevaert@michelmores.com or telephone +44(0)207 7886382.

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