In Vitro Fertilization Laws In United States

What may be considered legal in one country is completely forbidden in another. It is important to know your rights and understand the laws that exist so you can choose a place and facility that will provide you with the best chance of success.

Just like any other type of reproductive technology, IVF in the US operates under a certain level of legal provisions and limits. In the US, most of the aspects of this technology are regulated by some in vitro fertilization laws. The reason is that the process includes the lives of many stakeholders who require protection. For instance, these laws are supposed to protect donors, parents, children, and doctors. Moreover, they are necessary for determining and dictating who should access what, the available options, and the processes that can be used. However, it is important to remember that these ivf laws vary across states. This variation means that what is legal in one state could be illegal in another. Therefore, if the intended parents opt for the procedure, it is possible for them to consider moving to a different state for a while, or even perhaps to move to a different country. In any case, being informed about rights and laws is a crucial issue.

In the remaining sections of this post, we shall look at some of the main areas that these laws cover.

Bodily Injury

The first area where ivf laws by the state apply in the US is physical harm. Here, the law in all the states protects all IVF complainants against bodily injuries. It is good to note that even a small injury resulting from a doctor’s negligence could result in a legal tussle, suing the doctor for compensation. However, this harm does not include mere surgical actions by doctors. For instance, two women came out complaining that the process of removing eggs from their bodies and the surgery amounted to injury because they felt pain. However, the court dismissed their petition because they had given their consent to the process.

Breach of Contract

Another area where the law applies in the US is breach of contract. This scope of legal application does not include any personal injury caused by the neglect of the provisions of an agreement by concerned parties. Instead, it focuses on the failure by one or the parties in a contract to perform their agreed duties. So, if the clinic dismisses the contract without proper explanation, the customers should sue it.


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Claims Failure

Damages resulting from emotional distress are another area where in vitro fertilization legal cases have been reported. A good example of such cases happened in 1998 where a childless couple approached a clinic and chose a donor resembling the husband. Instead of using his sperm, the clinic used another donor’s sperms. Eventually, they had three kids who never resembled any of the parents. The caouple was distressed by the facility’s negligent behavior. In their case, they were emotionally distressed but they could not sue the fraudulent clinic owners for double-dealing them. The couple sued the clinic but unfortunately, it lost the case, because the law could not establish any bodily harm connected to their emotional misery.

Later, other couples have come up with the same cases but currently, common law does not permit recovery for emotional damage inflicted by negligence without physical injury. We hope that sometime the law will be amended to address such loopholes.

Property Loss

The last legal area will examine is property loss resulting from IVF procedures. In recent past, IVF complainants have claimed to have lost property. For instance, in 2002, three ladies come to court seeking compensation for the loss of their embryos. In this case, the court permitted it to proceed while attaching emotional distress to it because they had lost indispensable property. In this case, the court determined that they were seeking to recover embryos, and not the prospects of conception as the respondent had tried to argue.

We hope our brief coverage of in vitro fertilization laws in United States has opened your eyes to what goes on in the legal aspect of this medical process. Though the laws are still undeveloped with many loopholes, we hope necessary reforms will fix these issues.

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