World · June 23, 2022

The UK court states that the widower can use the frozen embryo of his deceased wife as a surrogate

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A UK High Court judge ruled in favor of a man who asked to use his deceased wife’s frozen embryo with a surrogate on Wednesday.

Ted Jennings, 38, had submitted his application to the High Court after his wife, Fern-Marie Choya, died suddenly in 2019 while pregnant with twins and had not given written consent as to how her embryos could be. used after his untimely death.

The couple had previously engaged in fertility treatments, according to The Guardian. Choya later became pregnant with twins and died suddenly after 18 weeks of pregnancy after having complications.

Jennings and Choya had agreed to use their embryos should they pass, The Guardian reported. However, her forms stated that she would have to seek further information if she intended to use the eggs or embryos in treating someone else if she were to die.

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Jennings asked the Human Fertilization and Embryology Authority (HFEA) to use his deceased wife’s embryos with a surrogate, after which the HFEA rejected the request because Choya had not given written consent for posthumous surrogacy. .

In this photo taken on August 14, 2013, an embryologist works on a petri dish at a fertility clinic in south London.

In this photo taken on August 14, 2013, an embryologist works on a petri dish at a fertility clinic in south London.
(Photo AP / Sang Tan)

The family division judge, Ms. Justice Theis, eventually sided with Jennings, saying she was “satisfied” that the court had inferred that Choya had consented to use their embryo with a surrogate if she died. The judge also said that Choya was not given the proper opportunity to give consent during the IVF process as the form was “far from clear” as to how she could have given consent, according to the BBC. .

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The judge recommended that the HFEA “consider” reviewing the form in light of its ruling.

“I am delighted that the court found itself in Ted’s favor and that he can now proceed with the surrogacy treatment. It was clear that this was what Fern would have wanted and this very thorough judgment allows his wishes to be respected,” he said. Jenning’s attorney, James Lawford Davies, in the Guardian.

Pregnancy test on the fertility chart

Pregnancy test on the fertility chart
(iStock)

The HFEA released a statement following the court’s decision, stating, “This is a tragic case and the HFEA continues to have all sympathy for Mr. Jennings. The Act of Parliament Regulating Fertility and Embryology in the UK it is clear that signed written consent is always required in these cases. The risk today is that this decision undermines that position and diminishes the protection it offers to a person’s expressed wishes regarding the use of their embryos after death. ”

Commuters walk over London Bridge during hot weather in London, Britain, June 17, 2022.

Commuters walk over London Bridge during hot weather in London, Britain, June 17, 2022.
(REUTERS / Henry Nicholls)

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The HFEA has not yet decided whether it will appeal the decision, according to the statement.

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Fox News reached out to Jennings’ attorney and the HFEA for comment, but received no response immediately.