What is artificial Insemination?
Artificial insemination (AI) is the process of placing freshly ejaculated sperm (used within 60 mins) into the reproductive tract of a female wishing to become pregnant. This is usually achieved with the help of a sterile syringe (no needle). However it has famously been daubed the “turkey baster method” for obvious reasons. This has become a popular way for lesbian and infertile couples to become pregnant. One of the reasons is that it is able to be achieved at home rather than a fertility clinic.
Do I need a legal agreement to donate sperm?
When a sperm donor donates sperm through a fertility/IVF clinic, he has no legal or financial obligation to the child/ren born as a result of his donation. In the case of known sperm donation via DIY artificial insemination, it is an agreement that is made privately between two adults. It is important that you and your recipient have a written sperm donor agreement detailing your intentions prior to conception. Although written agreements are not legally binding, it is important to document your intentions before donating in the event an issue arises in the future. We at Fertility Connections recommend getting independent legal advice before commencing donation. Please see our useful links page for contacts of specialists in this field.
Why should I become a known sperm donor?
Your donation will allow a single woman, heterosexual or same sex couples the chance to create a family. Becoming a known sperm donor allows you to decide whom you wish to donate too. Donating privately gives you and your recipient the opportunity to get to know each other before making a commitment. It’s important that both parties understand the roles that each will play in the child/ren’s future before making a donation. Some donors are happy to receive little or no contact with the child/ren created from their donation, while others may be looking for co parenting arrangements. It is advisable to discuss the long term ramifications of donating with an infertility psychologist as well as a legal specialist.
Who can be a sperm donor?
Most IVF clinics prefer men to be between 21 to 55 years of age to register as sperm donors. Clinics usually accept men of all nationalities, religious beliefs, gay or straight, whatever! As long as you are in good health, are fertile and willing to have blood tests to clear you of any infectious diseases or STI’s you will be able to be a sperm donor. You do not have to have fathered your own children to become a sperm donor. However some recipients may ask you to have a semen analysis to check your fertility before donating.
Will I get paid for being a sperm donor?
No, unfortunately not. It is illegal to profit from selling sperm or any other human tissue in Australia and New Zealand. You will however be covered for all medical, travel and accommodation costs associated with your donation.
How will my sperm be used to attempt pregnancy?
There are two ways your recipient may ask you to donate. Either through a fertility clinic for future IVF treatment or privately to be used fresh via artificial insemination (AI). In this case, your recipient will be tracking her ovulation cycle and will be able to give you the approximate days you will need to donate. You will usually be required to donate 2-4 times during her cycle, usually every second day.
Will my name be on the birth certificate?
Any child born as a result of your donation is deemed the child of the birth mother and her partner (male or female) under Australian and New Zealand law. Thus, you will not be named on the birth certificate. In Co Parenting arrangements, the sperm donor can be named on the birth certificate if both parties agree to this.