(161)  Sperm donation and parental rights

On 7 March 2002 Sheriff Laura Duncan held in Glasgow Sheriff Court that a homosexual sperm donor had parental rights in relation to a child produced with his sperm and being brought up by a lesbian couple including the mother.  The donor had fallen out with the couple about how much access he should have to the child.  The sheriff held that the donor was the child’s natural father and that there was no evidence that he had entered into a contract with the couple merely to provide sperm.  The sheriff also held that the couple did not constitute a family unit and that the mother’s partner in the relationship should not be awarded parental rights.