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I am seeking a consultation with an attorney with a background in family and fertility law.

Lawyer's Assistant: What state are you in? It matters because laws vary by location.

Texas, specifically relating to frozen embros

Lawyer's Assistant: What steps have you taken so far?

I am involved in a 4 year divorce that has gone to arbitration, we had a prenuptial agreement and community property did not start till our fourth anniversary. I filed for divorce in year 5, however the embryos were paid for by my wife's separate property. An arbitrator has ruled the embroys are hers because she paid for them and i have no rights... my wife had a hysterectomy, and contributed nothing but money. we used an eggg donor and my sperm and a surrogate to carry our son.

Lawyer's Assistant: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?

My lawyer railroaded me into signing a 50+ page divorce decree at the courthouse, i accepted his advice (like a true idiot) as he said we needed to get this taken care of today.. on the drive home from the courthouse (attesting to the execution of the decree) i realized we had not addressed the embroys... (a contested issue of course) i told my lawyer to file amotion to set aside the execution and he has not contacted me since.. he's covering up some errors in this case.. i want to know if i need another family law lawyer to work on getting the executiuon of the decree set aside (main reason the embryos), or just face the fact i got screwed

Submitted: 3 months ago.Category: Family Law
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Answered in 3 minutes by:
3/20/2018
Family Lawyer: RayAnswers, Lawyer replied 3 months ago
RayAnswers
RayAnswers, Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 48,145
Experience: 30 years as a family law lawyer .
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Hi and welcome to JA. Ray here to help you today.Please bear with me a few moments while I review your question and respond.

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
Ok, take the time to get it right and please ask any questions you have. - also note the fertility agency adn i do not have a copy of the contract we signed for the embryos.
Family Lawyer: RayAnswers, Lawyer replied 3 months ago

You will need another family lawyer to pursue this.The embryos are marital proeprty as you present it and you can motion to divide them.The court decides if they are her separate or community property subject to division.You can motion the court for division and seek to have them divided or resolved here.

I appreciate the chance to help you tonight.I wish you the best.

If you can positive rate5 stars it is much appreciated.

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Family Lawyer: RayAnswers, Lawyer replied 3 months ago

Lawyer referral service at ***-***-**** (Toll-Free)

This is run by our state bar to help you here.

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
are you saying i have no rights as a genetic contributor?
Family Lawyer: RayAnswers, Lawyer replied 3 months ago

I am saying the court would have to decide what to do with them.You will have to motion the court to resolve the issue here.You may well have marital rights here.

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
whatsort of maritial rights may i have?
Family Lawyer: RayAnswers, Lawyer replied 3 months ago

Here if you cannot reach resolution on them you motion the court on how to divide them if they are community property, if judge decides they are separate then she gets them if they are her eggs.

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Family Lawyer: RayAnswers, Lawyer replied 3 months ago

Texas Law Regarding Frozen Embryos

Texas law regarding frozen embryos utilizes a contract law approach in determining the ownership of embryos that were frozen prior to the couple’s divorce. Couples who decide to freeze embryos must sign a contract outlining ownership of the embryos in the event of divorce at either the fertility clinic or in the presence of lawyer.

This law arises from a case that was was decided by the Texas Court of Appeals. This case involved a couple who divorced before frozen embryos could be used. A contract signed by the couple while providing the frozen embryos dictated that in the event of a divorce, frozen embryos must be discarded. The Court of Appeals subsequently ruled that the terms of the contract must be followed and the frozen embryos must be destroyed.

Controversial Aspects About Frozen Embryos

Couples in Texas who are deciding to use frozen embryos must understand that the process is very controversial in nature for several reasons. For one reason, there are no national laws concerning frozen embryos, which leaves each state to determine how the process will be determined. As a result, there are varying laws about the process in several states. While states like Texas use a contract based approach to determine ownership of frozen embryos, states like Massachusetts apply an approach that forbids any frozen embryo to be used for any reason without the mutual consent of the couple that created the frozen embryo.

It is unknown but possible that at some point the Supreme Court will hear a case regarding frozen embryos.

Advice For Couples Who Decide To Create Frozen Embryos

There are some essential pieces of information that individuals who decide to create frozen embryos should use to minimize the potential for arguments about ownership, which include the following:

  • Discuss All Potential Situations With Your Spouse. Prior to creating frozen embryos, make sure to discuss ownership of the frozen embryos in all situations that might unfold including divorce or separation.
  • Review The Policies of Fertility Clinics. Couples should make sure to thoroughly research the policies of several fertility clinics to determine how each clinic handles frozen embryo ownership.
  • Consult A Seasoned Texas Family Law Lawyer. An lawyer can help couples decide how frozen embryo ownership should be handled.
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Family Lawyer: RayAnswers, Lawyer replied 3 months ago

May be a contract issue there that judge would rule according to it.Texas has not really had a case from Supreme Court on this yet.

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
ray, i have access to google too. Do I have any rights to my genetic material? Or.. did she buy it? that's not legal either..
Family Lawyer: RayAnswers, Lawyer replied 3 months ago

In Texas you have rights to it too.There is limited cases on it, I gave you what there is.Judge has the final say here.Thats as specific as I can be here.It is a cutting edge thing.I would go back to the company and ask for copy of contract to see what the contract says about who they belong too.Judge likely follows the contract in a dispute.

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