A man who donated his sperm to a friend with the belief he could play a role in the child’s life has won a High Court fight over his rights.

The case was sparked by the mother’s decision to move to New Zealand with their biological child.

The court was told the man was listed as the girl’s father on her birth certificate, and that she and her sister, to whom he was not related, called him “daddy”.

The man had been friends with the girl’s mother, and the two had agreed that he would provide his sperm so she could conceive.

She later married a same-sex partner and they decided to move to New Zealand, triggering the legal move to keep the girl in the country.

The main issue before the High Court was whether he was legally the girl’s father, or whether his role was limited to biology.

The girl’s mother and her wife argued the man was not her legal father, citing a New South Wales law setting out rules for fertilisation procedures, which specifically addressed the situation of same-sex couples.

But today the court ruled in the man’s favour, overturning a previous appeal the girl’s mothers won and reinstating a Family Court judgement that ordered the women to live in Australia.

Share your comments below

  • He was obviously of the understanding this was a shared experience with both parties before donating. I can understand.


  • He’s not just a donor in this instance.


  • Obviously he had a problem with the child leaving the country, otherwise he would’ve given permission? Had he had anything to do with the child before this? I hope they do what’s best for the child, not their egos.


  • Hopefully this story will help other couples to conceive using methods that can be legally challenged


  • Very interesting and complicating.


  • Interesting case indeed.


  • An interesting legal case.
    It does seem to be a complicated area.


  • I believe if he knew of her and he was on the certificate, its a hard case to not say he isnt the father


  • The guy’s name is on the child’s birth certificate so the Mother cannot say the donor was anonymous.

    • I read about this in another article and the child sees him regularly and calls him dad, so of course hes not just a donor then is he?!

      • It does appears to be a complicated situation with complex layers and not anonymous.


  • He was involved in her life so why would he just let her move across the sea.


  • Yes, but he was very involved in her life, and did a lot more than provide sperm.


  • This raises a lot of interesting issues.


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