Mother had Daughter using a sperm donor provided through a sperm bank.
Mother selected Donor A as her sperm donor. However, the sperm bank actually provided the sperm of Donor B.
Mother and Donor A are both white. Donor B is black.
As a result, Daughter is biracial, and that is reportedly apparent.
Mother loves Daughter.
However, Mother lived in a very small town in Ohio, with a population of under 3,500 … only 10 of whom were African American.
The surprise of Daughter’s heritage and the need to relocate to a larger, more compatible community allegedly caused Mother stress and actual damages. The lawsuit seeks compensation for those as well as punitive damages.
So Mother sued the sperm bank. For wrongful birth and breach of warranty.
That didn’t fly. A state court dismissed that lawsuit.
But Mother was not barred from refiling her case in federal court, premised this time on the sperm bank’s negligence.
Mother’s claims are apparently predicated entirely on the racial differences between Donor A and Donor B. But there are undoubtedly many differences between the two men.
Whatever one’s opinion about the practice, would-be mothers who use sperm banks pore over donor profiles in search of the perfect donor.
Not only racial heritage but also height, weight, attractiveness, intelligence, creativity, sense of humor, skills, talents, interests, education, religion, politics, you name it, are all carefully assessed.
Not all are as objective or quantifiable as race, so perhaps they are not as well-suited for calculation of damages.
But it is perhaps surprising that no other characteristics seem to have found their way into the lawsuit.
Read more in
- this National Law Journal article: Sperm Bank Sued over Donor Mix-Up and
- this Reuters article: Ohio woman sues sperm bank after birth of mixed-race baby .