Question: I am unable to use my own eggs for IVF. My friend is going to donate her eggs to me so my husband and I will be able to have a child. What kind of legal agreements do we need before we proceed?

Answer: Your generous friend will be considered a known donor. A known donor is one that the intended parents find on their own (friend, relative, etc.) without the use of an agency to locate an egg donor.

There are pros and cons to using a known donor, in that with a relative or friend, you will know that particular person well enough to not speculate about certain characteristics that you wish for your child to have such as intelligence, health, looks, etc. However, in Pennsylvania, since there is minimal statutory guidance with regard to egg donation, it is imperative that an individual embarking on this journey proceeds with a legal agreement.

This agreement will fully address the rights of both the intended parents and the egg donor. Particularly, it will make clear that the donor voluntarily relinquishes all rights to the eggs being donated. It will also address and eliminate the right of the egg donor to make any future decisions as it relates to the embryos created through the IVF process.

Further, the agreement protects the egg donor and the intended parents by ensuring that any resulting child is that of the intended parents and that no parental obligations over such child will be born by the egg donor.

Written by: Dorota Gasienica-Kozak, Esquire
Adoption/ART Chair