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Should embryos be part of high asset division or custody battles

Certainly most parents would agree that no possessions in the world are more valuable than their children. However, when a couple in Jefferson County files for a high asset divorce, their children would never be divided like marital property. Instead, a parenting plan would be written up and custody rights would be appropriately granted.

But what should happen to unborn children?

This dilemma has arisen in various courts across the nation. One man is concerned that his ex-wife, who was awarded custody of frozen embryos, which are eggs that have been fertilized, might try and collect child support if any of the embryos are implanted in the woman and she becomes pregnant. He asked for the embryos to be destroyed but an agreement gave his ex-wife the right to keep them. Judges have ruled in the past that a woman’s harvested eggs were not yet human beings and should be divided as property, but given that the embryos contain physiological parts of both the ex-husband and wife, the case is far less simple.

According to sources, the advancement of reproductive science is making it difficult for some former families. Many people believe that men should not become parents involuntarily, which will likely force them to have to pay support, simply because they had previously given their sperm in an attempt to have a baby with their former partner.

If you have tried alternative methods of conceiving children and now you and your partner would like a divorce, speaking with an experienced family law attorney may likely be the best way of protecting both your assets and your children, whether unborn or not.

Source: The Washington Times, “Are unborn children people or property in a divorce, and who decides?,” Sep. 19, 2013

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