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The legal angle on donor conception

Interview - LSE
Making babies in the 21st century
Professor of Law

Around the world, different legal systems deal with donor conception in very different ways. Many countries have little or no legal provisions and some have recently changed their legislation.

In the UK, donor anonymity was removed in 2005. Many people worried about this, and there were concerns that it would mean the end of donor conception.

In fact, what occurred was a change in the demographics of donors and the choices that families make. With identifiable donation, the typical sperm donor is more likely to be older and often more interested in having contact with the child in the future.

Some countries have gone further than the UK, and have made disclosure mandatory or opened their donor register even for donations that were anonymous at the time, as mentioned in the introduction to this week’s learning.

Professor Jackson goes through these controversial ethical and legal wrangles that occur when biology, technology and social norms change.

Question to consider: What are your views on retrospective removal of anonymity and forced disclosure for those using donated gametes?

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Making Babies in the 21st Century

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