Lisa Rinehart RN, BSN, JD, weighs in on the COVID-19 delays in having a baby

Rinehart advises that step one is to always look to any consent forms signed with a fertility clinic. When going through fertility procedures, a patient will inevitably sign–and maybe even review–lengthy consent forms. In modern times, these forms usually include disposition terms for any cryopreserved eggs, sperm, or embryos, including instructions in the case of death or divorce, or if the cryopreserved material becomes unclaimed.”

Rinehart explained that most courts are going to consider (and perhaps follow) what is agreed to between the parties on the consent forms — whether that is one party being able to use the embryos, the embryos being destroyed, or embryos being donated to others. There are exceptions, of course. These include an outlying statute out of Arizona, that requires a judge presiding over a dissolution of marriage to award any cryopreserved embryos to the party “most likely to bring them to birth,” regardless of any documented agreement by the parties to the contrary.

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