In 2001, a couple purchased donor sperm from a sperm bank so that they could conceive a child. The sperm bank represented that it carefully screened all of its donors, to the point where it only accepted about 5% of potential donors. More to the point, the sperm bank told the couple here that the sample they purchased–identified as Donor #9623–was one of their “best” donors.
That turned out to be not quite true. In fact, Donor #9623 made a number of false and misleading statements during the screening process. For example, although he said he had no criminal history, he had multiple prior arrests for burglary, trespassing, and drunk driving. The donor also lied about his educational background.
Such omissions may not seem like a big deal, but the donor also failed to disclose that he had a history of mental illness, for which he required multiple hospitalizations. The couple who purchased the donor’s sperm only learned of this years later, after the child they conceived was born and had started to manifest symptoms of mental disorders himself. The child also has a genetic blood disorder that was not acquired from the mother.