Stokes O'Brien

Sperm Bank Fraud Lawsuits in California

Posted in Business and Real Estate Litigation,Fraud on July 25, 2016

We just reviewed an interesting article in the New York Times about sperm bank fraud lawsuits in California.  Couples and individuals trust sperm banks in collecting and storing their sperm securely for a later date.  However, sperm banks have been found mishandling and misrepresenting the donated sperm.  Whether missing, misplaced, or containing disorders, these vials are not being maintained with the utmost care as they should.  This longstanding issue is finally coming to light due to the shift in demographics of buyers.  Most people are now willing to discuss this matter publicly. 

Sperm banks are lightly regulated.  Most do not offer genetic testing, rather rely on the donor’s description of their health conditions.  The Food and Drug Administration requires that donor sperm be tested for infectious diseases.  These companies fail to meet those requirements. Misleading descriptions are made to market donors, and stored vials are negligently maintained. By operating recklessly, these companies are facing lawsuits more frequently.

In California, the elements to a tort claim for international misrepresentation in the unique context of a sperm bank are the same as with any other business transaction:

Plaintiff claims that Defendant made a false representation that harmed [him/her].  To establish this claim, Plaintiff must prove all of the following:

1. That Defendant represented to Plaintiff that an important fact was true;

2. That Defendants’s representation was false;

3. That Defendant knew that the representation was false when [he/she] made it, or that [he/she] made the representation recklessly and without regard for its truth;

4. That Defendant intended that Plaintiff rely on the representation;

5. That Plaintiff  reasonably relied on Defendant’s representation;

6. That Plaintiff was harmed; and

7. That Plaintiff ’s reliance on Defendant’s representation was a substantial factor in causing [his/her] harm.

Finding a San Diego Fraud Lawyer

Whether you are considering a lawsuit or being sued, whether you are an individual or business, our team of San Diego fraud lawyers is available for a complimentary consultation.  Please free feel to call us at the number below, or fill out the online form.