Are Embryos Protected Under Constitutional Law?

Frozen embryos are becoming an issue in more and more courtrooms. Last year, there were several high profile cases involving the battle over frozen embryos, primarily in cases where the couple had created the embryos during their marriage and were now getting a divorce. They needed to decide what to do with their remaining embryos. Judges are issuing their rulings – and sometimes offer conflicting judgements – and it’s bringing an old issue back into the spotlight: are embryos people? And should they be protected by constitutional law?

Some people say no, that embryos are not and should not be considered people and thus do not have the right to be protected by constitutional law. Others say these frozen embryos are people and should not be destroyed. The Catholic Church has weighed in, saying embryos are human life and should be protected as such, but as of yet lawmakers have been reluctant to say anything. The time may be coming when they will have to, as more than 600,000 embryos are frozen in the United States and more couples are choosing alternative family building methods that require the creation and storage of frozen embryos. If those couples get divorced, those cases may be headed for court, and the guidance of state and federal lawmakers may be needed.

Embryo donation could offer a solution for both sides. The embryos are not destroyed and have the opportunity to experience the life that they were created to have, but without obligation or a burden of care on the part of the biological parent. Couples can agree to donate the embryos which can be adopted and raised by a loving family. If you would like to learn more about embryo adoption and the legal ramifications of this unique family building method, you can visit www.embryoadoption.org.

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