I get this question a lot from clients who are afraid that their sperm donor will be considered a father in the eyes of the law, entitled to custody and visitation. Thankfully, Virginia law provides that a donor is NOT the parent of a child conceived through assisted conception. Although we are relying on and citing Virginia law in the donor agreements I draft for my clients, I always state explicitly that the donor will have no parental rights, including no right to custody or visitation of any child conceived with the use of his donation. This gives the intended parents a measure of security that the legal status of all involved has been clearly explained in accordance with law.
Ironically, when I have represented donors, they have often told me that this language gives them a reciprocal feeling of relief because they do not want to be parents – they just want to help someone else become a parent. 😉
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