On Saturday the Kansas City Star posted an article about William Marotta, who is being sued for child support because he answered and ad on Craigslist placed by a lesbian couple looking for a sperm donor.
This is the story:
Marotta (the donor), Bauer and Schreiner (the lesbian couple) signed an agreement saying Marotta would be paid $50 per semen donation, with the arrangement including a clear understanding that he would have no parental rights whatsoever with the child or children.
The agreement also called for Bauer and Schreiner to hold Marotta harmless “for any child support payments demanded of him by any other person or entity, public or private, including any district attorney’s office or other state or county agency, regardless of the circumstances or said demand.”
Marotta’s attorney, Hannah Schroller, said her client consulted with his wife and decided to donate free rather than take the $50. In the years since Schreiner gave birth to a daughter through artificial insemination, Marotta received periodic email updates on the child but hasn’t had much contact with the couple, Schroller said.
On Oct. 3, attorney Mark McMillan filed a petition on behalf of the Department of Children and Families seeking a ruling that Marotta is the father of Schreiner’s child and owes a duty to support her. It said the department provided cash assistance totaling $189 for the girl for July through September 2012 and had paid medical expenses totaling nearly $6,000.
In 2007 the Kansas Supreme Court ruled:
The Kansas Supreme Court today upheld legislation governing artificial insemination, ruling that a known sperm donor does not acquire parental rights unless there is a written agreement with a child’s mother.
The decision affirming the statute’s constitutionality was the first of its kind in the nation, arising out of consolidated actions filed by a mother of twins conceived through artificial insemination and by the known sperm donor for the procedure.
The mother and donor disagreed on whether they had entered into an oral agreement giving rise to parental rights for the donor. They also disagreed on whether certain documents constituted a written agreement.
What a mess. It will be interesting to see how this case is decided.