Recently, US President Obama announced that he will have an executive order for immigration reform. Are IVF rights on the agenda? Here are a few simple reasons to have IVF rights on the agenda first and foremost in the best interest of the IVF child and then the intended parents and families. As a society, we cannot knowingly create stateless babies and punish IVF families for wanting to build families through wonders of IVF. It is time to celebrate IVF in the 21st century and not hibernate. If you agree with the change, sign the petition at http://chn.ge/1oltFl5 and support IVF rights.
1) Change the verbiage in the current US Immigration Law (7 FAM 1131.4 and 7 FAM 1131.5 and its sub-sections) that deals with IVF for US citizens: Change the phrase from “biological mother/father” to “parent“. The “genetic link” requirement discriminates against infertile people (the very folks who are meant to give a helping hand through wonders of technology), punishes innocent IVF children for DNA mismatches, punishes IVF children born during a divorce or born into a LGBTI family or single parent family.
2) Change the phrase from “child born out of wedlock” to “child born“. If IVF children are deemed to be “born out of wedlock”, are we implicitly taking away their legal rights of being “born in a marriage”? Frankly, the verbiage is outdated and offensive.
3) The applicable US Immigration law for IVF fathers on US green card: We are asking for a change of one word – from “mother” to “parent” as cited in 9 FAM 42.1 N2.1 and 9 FAM 42.1 N1.1. This would allow an IVF father legally on US green card to bring a child born outside the US though an egg donor and surrogate to meet US law requirements. If a US LPR mother uses her egg and a donor sperm and surrogate abroad can bring that IVF child legally to the US then why discriminate against the IVF father who uses his sperm? Does the innocent IVF child care?
4) Family Laws and Best Interest of an IVF child born during a divorce – If a US couple has an ongoing IVF pregnancy, it must be mandatory to declare the IVF pregnancy to the court like a natural pregnancy in the event of a divorce so that the BEST INTEREST OF THE CHILD can be ascertained by the court. Suppressing information from the court is a crime. The rights of an innocent IVF child in a foreign country of a US couple are directly placed in a LEGAL LIMBO. Have a law that a US resident (US Citizen or Legal resident) must “pre-declare” for an IVF child if the surrogacy is done abroad which inherently will protect the rights of the innocent IVF child.
5) Left-behind IVF child law – The needs of an IVF child are NO DIFFERENT than a natural born child. An IVF child also needs love, care, clothes, food, shelter, books, toys, education, and so on. If an intended parent abandons an IVF pregnancy or IVF child in a foreign country, they should be held accountable and responsible because the IVF child’s needs are EQUAL. Is an IVF child LESS of a child than a natural born child? An IVF child is not an unwanted pregnancy but a deliberate pregnancy to bring an innocent life into this world. Laws should hold adults accountable and responsible for abandoning an ongoing IVF pregnancy they consented to.
6) Legal recourse for lapses – In cases where the fertility clinic lapses like accidentally swapping samples there should be a legal recourse. In this case, a DNA test would be negative but what if the intended parents still want to bring an IVF child born outside the US back to the US and raise them? It is traumatic enough to deal with infertility and the trauma only continues when there are serious lapses like switching samples of the biological parent. Some of these laws should be retroactive to UNITE innocent IVF children and families.
7) Debate on Parentage – Define clearly on parentage of the child including issuance of legal documents like birth certificate. A valid birth certificate is a fundamental right of the CHILD and not the parents. It is a document that the child carries for life including adulthood. As the technology evolves, (Link Is : “Three-Parent IVF” Up For Public Consultation In Britain : http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/250343.php) it is possible to have a “three parent IVF child” where the DNA is from three parents. What will be the legal impact of this?
8) Public Service –
a) Just like there are public service announcements through radio advertisements, etc. to educate and spread awareness about adoption and its legalities, there should be similar public service campaigns for IVF families.
b) Just like there are travel advisories for US citizens to risky regions, there should be IVF/surrogacy advisories for US citizens of countries that uphold basic IVF child rights and basic human rights of the IVF industry including donors and surrogates.