Legal Agreements for Egg Donation

What is Egg Donation?

Egg donation is the process of an Egg Donor having eggs retrieved, to be used by an egg recipient to build their family.

You may choose to use donor eggs to create your family because:

  • if you’re over 40, IVF rates are two to three times more successful using donor eggs than the recipient’s own eggs
  • using frozen donor eggs or frozen donor embryos can be more cost effective, since there is no need for expensive treatments to induce ovulation or synchronize menstrual cycles
  • egg donation is available to Intended Parents of all ages
  • you and your partner (if applicable) do not have viable eggs to use for IVF, due to infertility or anatomy

The Legalities of Egg Donation in Canada

Egg donation is legal in Canada. It is illegal, however, to purchase eggs or embryos from a donor or person acting on behalf of a donor. It is important that you work with an experienced Canadian fertility lawyer when navigating the Assisted Human Reproduction Act, to protect your legal interests and ensure you’re not breaking the law.

Egg Donation Agreements

You should enter into an Egg Donation Agreement, regardless of whether you’re receiving a known egg donation or anonymous egg donation. Your fertility clinic may even require an agreement be in place before egg retrieval.

Your Egg Donation Agreement should state the intentions, expectations, and responsibilities of all parties including:

  • The desired relationship between parties before, during, and after the egg donation process
  • Future exchange of health information
  • Long-term communication expectations
  • Intended parentage

Your Egg Donation Agreement should state the intended parentage of the baby (or babies) that will be born through the egg donation process. Some provincial laws are unclear about whether an egg donor has parental rights and obligations, so an Egg Donation Agreement is critical. You and your Egg Donor should both obtain independent legal advice and support.

Declaring Parentage When You Have Conceived Using Donor Eggs

In some situations, and depending on what province your baby is born in, there may be additional legal steps to make you and your partner (if applicable) the legal parents of your child. We can help you prepare for and navigate through the process of declaring parentage across Canada. Canadian Fertility Lawyers can give you specific advice for your situation and location.

For private legal advice regarding egg donation in Canada, please do not hesitate to contact us.