A 47-year-old surrogate mother carrying triplets is under pressure by the children’s father to abort one of the unborn children.
California resident Melissa Cook is under contract with a 50-year-old postal worker from Georgia who paid her $33,000 to carry embryos created by his sperm and the eggs of a 20-year-old egg donor.
The doctor implanted three male embryos expecting that not all of them would survive. When it looked as if all three would in fact survive, he asked Cook to selectively abort one of them. Cook demurred and the postal worker threatened her with legal action and financial penalties for her refusal.
On Monday Cook filed a 47-page complaint asking the court to sever the contract arguing that the contract, legal under California law, violates due process and equal protection under the U.S. Constitution. She is being represented by pro-life attorney Harold Cassidy of New Jersey.
Cook says she no longer believes in surrogacy. She says, “Children derive a special benefit from their relationship with their mother.”
Cassidy said, “The notion that a man can demand that a mother terminate the life of one of the children she carries by an abortion, and then claim that she is liable for money damages when she refuses, is cruel to the mother.”
The U.S. has perhaps the least-regulated surrogacy laws in the world. Other countries regulate many aspects of the procedure.
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