New York court ruled parents have no right to dead son's semen

On March 3, 2009, the New York State Supreme Court Appellate Division issued a ruling [PDF] that Mary and Antonio Speranza did not have a right to semen that their 23-year-old son, Mark, donated before his death from cancer in 1998. Mark had donated the semen to ensure he would be able to have children if he survived his battle with cancer. The court denied rights to the parents, who wanted access to their son's sperm in order to have a grandchild, on the grounds that Mark was a "directed donor" who was only allowed to give his specimens to a specific person and had chosen to have his semen destroyed upon his death. The case came following an appeal of a decision [PDF] handed down by the New York State Supreme Court in January 2007.

Learn more about the legal issues surrounding fertility from the JURIST news archive.

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