The Case for Regulating Collaborative Reproduction: A Children's Rights Perspective

64 Pages Posted: 12 Feb 2013

See all articles by Helen M. Alvare

Helen M. Alvare

George Mason University - Antonin Scalia Law School

Date Written: 2003


There is little regulation of collaborative reproduction-the use of the eggs, sperm, or embryos of a third party to create a child biologically unrelated to at least one intending parent. This Article argues that the dearth of regulation should be assessed from a children's rights perspective and accordingly adjusted. After examining the effects of the experimental reproductive technologies, it concludes that traditional family law preferences and policies are undercut by the deliberate creation of collaboratively reproduced children. The lack of regulation might stem from constitutional protection afforded parents in the right of privacy and substantive due process cases. The author, however, contends that collaborative reproduction implicates the rights of children and requires a separate balancing of rights not contemplated in the other cases. Collaborative reproduction also requires regulation because of its spill over effects on the acceptability of cloning. The Article concludes by offering several possible regulatory responses to the problems posed by collaborative reproduction.

Keywords: artificial, bioethics, clinic, cloning, disorders, donation, donor, embryo, fertility, genetics, IVF, in vitro fertilization, implantation, injection, insemination, intracytoplasmic, laboratory, marriage, married, parental rights, procreation, registry, sperm, testing, two-parent households, uterus

JEL Classification: I18, I31, J12, J13, J17, J19

Suggested Citation

Alvare, Helen M., The Case for Regulating Collaborative Reproduction: A Children's Rights Perspective (2003). Harvard Journal on Legislation, Vol. 40, No. 1, Winter 2003, George Mason Law & Economics Research Paper No. 13-12, Available at SSRN:

Helen M. Alvare (Contact Author)

George Mason University - Antonin Scalia Law School ( email )

3301 Fairfax Drive
Arlington, VA 22201
United States

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