Elena Grasso

The Moment of Consent: Some Comparative Reflections on the Right to Implant Cryo-preserved and Disputed Embryos

  • Abstract

Informations and abstract

Keywords: Comparative Law, Embryo Cryoconservation, Disagreement between the Spouses, Informed Consent, Promissory Estoppel.

The article analyzes from a comparative perspective judicial rulings concerning medically assisted procreation in which the courts have had to decide on the fate of cryopreserved embryos where the former partner no longer wishes to become a parent, but the aspiring mother still wishes to have a child. In all of the cases examined, informed consent is the cornerstone for resolving the dispute although it is subject to limits in that it is not always easy to identify the wishes of the couple at the time of fertilization. A study of judgments from the United Kingdom and Israel highlights the device of promissory estoppel, by which common law systems provide an equitable remedy to protect a victim of a promise that is not subsequently honoured, regardless of the existence of any consideration.

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