•  
  •  
 

Authors

Thomas D. Arado

Document Type

Article

Media Type

Text

Abstract

Through the ingenuity of humankind, life can now be created in a petri dish and with it comes a genesis of the legal rights to that life. The 1978 birth of Louise Brown, the first child born using in vitro fertilization (IVF), opened up a new world of legal wrangling which culminated in the Tennessee Supreme Court decision of Davis v. Davis in 1992. The issue of frozen preembryos in divorce cases raises constitutional, property and contract issues, which courts will increasingly have to address. The constitutional issue pits the one party's right to procreate against the other party's right to not procreate. The property issue concerns "ownership" of the frozen preembryos between the parties. The contract issue involves agreements sometimes made upon entry into the in vitro fertilization program, which can determine the disposition of the preembryos upon termination of the IVF program. Part I of this article will introduce the reader to the process of in vitro fertilization. Part II will discuss relevant case law to date involving the disposition of frozen preembryos, including Davis. Part III will discuss the three prevalent views concerning the status of preembryos. Part IV of this article will analyze these views, how they may be adopted by courts in the future and how they may be applied to new cases, such as one recent case in Illinois. Finally, Part V will review the relevant parts of the Model Assisted Reproductive Technologies Act as proposed by the Committee on the Laws of Assisted Reproductive Technologies and Genetics of the American Bar Association and advocate its adoption. The question of who may obtain frozen preembryos in divorce situations is not a pleasant one, but using the principles outlined in this article, equitable solutions may be found.

First Page

241

Last Page

263

Publication Date

5-1-2001

Department

College of Law

ISSN

0734-1490

Language

eng

Publisher

Northern Illinois University Law Review

Included in

Law Commons

Share

COinS
 
 

To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.