Journal Article

In the Best Interests of the Child? Regulating Assisted Reproductive Technologies and the Well-Being of Offspring in Three Australian States

Rachel Thorpe, Samantha Croy, Kerry Petersen and Marian Pitts

in International Journal of Law, Policy and the Family

Volume 26, issue 3, pages 259-277
Published in print December 2012 | ISSN: 1360-9939
Published online October 2012 | e-ISSN: 1464-3707 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/lawfam/ebs012
In the Best Interests of the Child? Regulating Assisted Reproductive Technologies and the Well-Being of Offspring in Three Australian States

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In this article, we look at the regulation of Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART) from the perspectives of service providers and regulators in three Australian states, each with a different approach to regulating ART. We explore how the interests of the child were considered in the development of recent legislative changes, namely, the establishment of central donor registers and changes to eligibility criteria for accessing ART. From participants’ perspectives, abolishing donor anonymity is considered to be a key way in which the interest of the child can be preserved through legislation. The imposition of eligibility criteria on who can access ART is considered more controversial. We suggest that the welfare of the child principle is used to justify restrictions to ART access that are politically expedient. In fact, the disparate range of approaches to the regulation of ART in Australia provides the potential for the welfare of the child to be undermined.

Journal Article.  7784 words. 

Subjects: Family Law ; Marriage and the Family

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