(SACRAMENTO, Calif.) — Inspired by actor Jason Patric’s child custody battle, the California state legislature is debating a bill that would allow sperm donors to argue for their rights to become legal fathers.
Currently, sperm donors are not legally considered the “natural father” of their children unless both parents sign a document prior to conception, according to the proposed bill. This applies to anonymous sperm bank donors and sperm donors participating in in-vitro fertilization with women other than their wives.
The new bill, SB 115, would allow any sperm donor to go to court and argue that he deserves the rights that come with parentage. To grant parentage, the courts would determine whether a father-child relationship exists.
It passed the California senate in April and needs to make its way through the California assembly before it can be signed into law.
Patric, who starred in The Lost Boys in 1987, donated sperm for his girlfriend to conceive their now-3-year-old son, Gus, but the couple broke up, leaving Patric with no rights as Gus’s father because he didn’t sign an agreement before she conceived. He lost a custody battle in February.
Patric’s ex-girlfriend, massage therapist Danielle Schreiber, is fighting the bill, according to the Sacramento Bee.
Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio
Lois M. Collins, Deseret News
Jen Christensen, CNN