British Man has to pay child support for sperm donation

@Tatsuya (1149)
United States
December 4, 2007 12:01pm CST
A British man who donated sperm to allow a lesbian couple to have a baby was criticized Tuesday after claiming he is being unfairly forced to pay for the child. In a case fuelling ethical debate in Britain, Andy Bathie, 37, says he was given guarantees by Sharon and Terri Arnold that he would have no emotional or financial responsibility for the baby conceived from his donation. He claimed Monday the government's Child Support Agency (CSA) was demanding he pay thousands of pounds (euros, dollars) after the lesbian couple split up, saying the financial strain means he cannot start a family with his wife. But Terri Arnold said Tuesday that, although originally he had no responsibility, Bathie had changed his mind and had become involved in the child's upbringing. "What people don't understand is that they have only heard one side of the story. He was a father to the children, a dad. He played a father's role for two years of their, well, my daughter's life," she told GMTV. She confirmed that the couple approached Bathie five years ago after they "married" in a civil ceremony, and admitted that initially the accord was for him to simply be a sperm donor. "I will openly admit to that, but it was him that changed his mind. He wanted to be involved, he wanted to be a dad," she added, saying that he had looked after the girl one weekend every month. At the heart of the dispute is the fact that, under British law, only men who donate sperm anonymously through licensed fertility clinics are not considered the legal father of any resulting child. "Men giving out their sperm in any other way... are legally the father of any children born with all the responsibilities that carries," said a spokesman for Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA). In Bathie's case, the donation was a private arrangement. Bathie said Monday: "I don't have any particular ill will. It's the fact that I still even now don't see why I should have to pay for another couple's children."
2 people like this
12 responses
@ravinskye (8242)
• United States
4 Dec 07
Wow that is an unusual case. I think he probably knew the law before he entered into this deal. But I also think that if they weren't asking support from him while they were together, it isn't fair for him to have to help pay for this child now that they split up.
• United States
4 Dec 07
Oh. My. God. He wanked off in a cup so a lesiban couple could have a baby and now he's got to pay for it? And people wonder what's wrong with this world. Men are paying for children that aren't theirs, women are drowning children in bathtubs to get out from under being a parent and your average 15 year old has had at leasst one pregnancy scare in her lifetime. What is wrong?
2 people like this
@theprogamer (10539)
• United States
5 Dec 07
Almost like one story a saw where a woman went after a gay guy for child support. The kid wasn't his by the way, but thanks to legal shenannigans he almost got screwballed by it. "What is Wrong?" I'm still trying to piece it all together. Every piece gets another /facepalm though.
2 people like this
@Wario_1 (969)
• Sweden
14 Feb 08
Its stuff like this that makes the world a real shi**y place to live. Thats why its so damn important to get everything on paper, so that if they say something you can put the papers in their face and say suck on this one. Not only have papers yourself, but let your lawyer, grandmother, parents and any other trustworthy people also have a copy, complete with signature and time/date. IF they still try something, they will hopefully get totally powned/owned in court.
1 person likes this
@patgalca (15030)
• Orangeville, Ontario
4 Dec 07
The lesson here is no matter how you make the arrangements, you should always, ALWAYS, get it in writing. Sign away your parental rights. Have the "mothers" sign a form waiving his responsibility for child support. In this case, where the man decided to be a part of the child's life, if a contract had been drawn up I believe he still would not be held responsible. It sounds like they made a verbal agreement. If the lesbian couple split up, then the mother with custody should be seeking child support from her ex-partner, not the biological father of the child. Not all the facts are stated here but I am assuming since the lesbian couple were married, the non-biological mother adopted the child. If that is the case, then the man should not be required to pay. My daughter has been adopted by my husband. I was receiving child support from her invisible bio-dad. When he saw that we were planning on getting married he ASKED that my fiancee adopt his daughter so that he could be let off for child support. My fiancee had no problem doing that. We were strongly advised by several people not to go through with this adoption until AFTER we got married in case we didn't get married, but we didn't wait. My husband loves my daughter and sometimes forgets that she is not his biological daughter. If we were to end our marriage, would I go back to bio-dad for child support? No way! That would be ridiculous. My husband, her adoptive father, is responsible for her. Even if bio-dad had been part of the picture (which could have been possible since he was friends with my husband before all the mess began), my husband would still be considered her father. There are a lot of things missing in this story. Was a contract drawn up? Did the other mother adopt the child? This man should not be held accountable for child support but it could go against him if the above two questions did not occur.
2 people like this
@patgalca (15030)
• Orangeville, Ontario
4 Dec 07
Sorry for the confusion. That's fiance, not fiancee.
3 people like this
@theprogamer (10539)
• United States
5 Dec 07
Not surprised and I think I read about this one earlier this month or so. I just /facepalm at this one. Shouldn't the couple be looking after the child and supportng her? Not only that, doesn't this make a sick paradox very clear people? That some people (particularly women) think a dad can only be a dad if he's footing the bill?! I've even seen alienation and child seperation stories that turn out worse than that claim. That the dad can only be a dad "by check only". Fatherly visitation and interaction in the child's life isn't fine, but his money is fine. -_- Again, not surprised at all.
2 people like this
@niranjans87 (1078)
• India
5 Dec 07
Well forget the law,but if this guy was involved in the upbringing of the child at any point at all apart form the sperm donation then he is liable to provide for the child.However if he was not involved to a great degree and the child grew up like it would have in any other family and his influence on the child is negligible then he is totally right in refusing to pay up for the child.When the lesbian couple were together they wanted his help for them to have a child and now that they are not together they want his financial aid.Thats so arrogant of them.
2 people like this
• United States
4 Dec 07
He should have tp ay child support. he did not sign all papers he needed to for one..wich he could of gotten away with MABEY had he not been playing the role of the child father for so long...
• United States
4 Dec 07
Im not sure he should have to pay child support. He donated, sperm to two women who wanted a child. He in no way procreated this child, didnt use protection or was any other way involved in the making of this baby. I think when people endeavor into such areas of ethical concern, they should definately consult a lawyer to see what their rights and responsibilities will be. I say shame on these two wome for trying to make him pay child support.
@blueunicorn (2409)
• United States
4 Dec 07
I know I am going to have the unpopular opinion here, but here's how I feel. The man has been acting as a father, therefore he has given the couple a reason to ask for child support. If he had simply donated the sperm, then walked away I would feel different. Unfortunately you can't have your cake and eat it too. I think this man really set himself up for this by asking to be a part of the child's life.
1 person likes this
@Ravenladyj (22937)
• United States
5 Dec 07
I agree with you completely...if he'd stuck to the orignial deal and stayed away it'd be different but he didn't..he made the CHOICE to be involved..
2 people like this
@theprogamer (10539)
• United States
5 Dec 07
Don't worry blue, its a good opinion; I see where you are coming from. And at least I'm not going to do anything stupid over it. Worry not. I have to say I see it different though. I'm betting they are only using his interaction as "dad" as a smokescreen to get to the payments. Once the couple gets the payments they are likely to play keepaway with the daughter. Seen plenty of similar cases.
2 people like this
@Ravenladyj (22937)
• United States
5 Dec 07
"Once the couple gets the payments they are likely to play keepaway with the daughter" Well they arent a couple anymore and again this is one of those things where a legal document needs to be drawn up..if he IS going to pay support then he should also be legally given visitation rights....Hopefully any judge who hears this case will have enough sense to order that flatout
2 people like this
@Ravenladyj (22937)
• United States
5 Dec 07
hhhmm interesting..and this is the reason why ppl should ALWAYS have some sort of legal binding document drawn up when they get into agreements like this... I personally think he SHOULD pay support...IF he'd stuck to the original deal and stayed out of the picture then that'd be one thing HOWEVER he ended up CHOOSING to become a part of the childs life which IMO makes the original deal nil and void...
1 person likes this
@Wario_1 (969)
• Sweden
14 Feb 08
I agre with you, he screwed up pretty nice when getting involved in the first place. It would have been best if he had not donated anything at all, then this mess would not have happened.
1 person likes this
• United States
19 Feb 08
Another stupid male not following the governmental rules, which are setup to protect against this exact situation. So now he has no choice but to accept the consequences, because his daughter has rights, whether he likes it or not. Also he is responsible for creating a relationship with her too, as this article showed he did on his own. Too bad, so sad idiot. Stop whining and be a man, especially in front of your daughter who knows who you are!
• United States
11 Mar 08
If you have a lesbian who has someone they know be a sperm donor, they should go to court and have it put on paper that if the lesbian couple break up, the sperm donor is not to be financially resp for the kid, the lesbian partner that left should be finan resp. Whether they knew the donor or not, the donor should never be finan resp for the kid. The donor didn't have to help the lesb couple out, they could've said no. The lesb couple should be treated like a regular couple, when your together and you have a kid, your responsible. If one of you leaves, the one who left should pay cs and still help take care of the kids.
@wisedragon (2330)
• Philippines
5 Dec 07
Well based on their original agreement he really shouldn't be financially responsible for this child. However, there's not much he can do because as you said, under British law he is legally the father of that child. They should just work out some sort of a compromise. What a mess left by a lesbian relationship!