In most cases in which one party wishes to use frozen embryos to have a child and the other does not, the opposing party is favored in court. That could change, however, based on a law recently passed in another state. The new law gives parties who want to use frozen embryos to have a child the right to do so, even if the other party strongly opposes that outcome. That has many Florida readers concerned.
The law is highly controversial because it essentially forces parenthood on individuals who don’t wish to become parents. Those who support the law point to the fact that many people choose to freeze embryos because health considerations prevent them from becoming parents at that time. They store their embryos with plans to have a child when their health improves. However, if the relationship between prospective parents ends, that could leave one party with no additional options for having a child who shares their genetic makeup.
Of course, there are also ethical issues related to forcing someone to become a parent against their will. Although the new law states that an objecting party would have no parental rights or responsibilities, that doesn’t mean that there won’t be emotional consequences. Many individuals would have a hard time ignoring the fact that their former partner was raising their biological child.
Yet another issue involves how this new child custody law could impact additional legislation and court rulings down the road. Some Florida residents are concerned that the law could be used to grant “personhood” status to embryos. That could have wide-ranging implications, including a threat to a woman’s right to choose whether to bring a child to term.