Articles

Actor fights for sperm donor rights

Jason Patric, known for many roles including his starring part in the feature Lost Boys, appeared before the Assembly Judiciary Committee yesterday to request that lawmakers expand paternal rights for fathers in IVF conceptions, as well as increased child custody rights.

This is the latest quest by the famed actor to give more legal rights regarding biological children for donors.

If the bill passes, it would give Patric as well as other sperm donors access to the children they helped conceive. In Patric's particular instance, he is seeking an additional chance toward custody of his 3-year-old son, which was conceived through in vitro fertilization with an ex-girlfriend.

Though the actor says he went to "great lengths" to become a dad and was involved in the boy's life, Patric's ex-girlfriend was awarded sole custody last year, which, according to news agencies, legally resigned Patric to be considered only as a sperm donor, particularly as he and the mother were never married.

Patric, however, claims he and the boy's mother signed an "intended parent" document, even as it has been reported that no such document exists. News publications state the judge in the case awarded the mother full custody because of the nonexistent written agreement between the pair.

Further news reports claim California law has rendered Patric essentially powerless in the case.

Patric's latest efforts, if successful, will give courts a higher degree of discretion with regard to fathers in custody cases similar to his own. At any rate, the issue is complicated, and one which many women's rights groups oppose. However, the assemblyman who introduced the bill states it would only apply in cases where the fathers have already been significantly involved in a child's life.

Child custody and visitation rights cases can be tough, particularly for fathers who have participated in IVF conceptions. If you feel you have been unjustly denied custody or visitation rights from a partner with whom you have conceived a child by way of IVF, there may be avenues of support to pursue.

Source:  Newser.com, "Jason Patric Fights for More Rights for Sperm Donors" Evann Gastaldo, Aug. 14, 2013

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