Canada’s Assisted Human Reproduction Act permits altruistic sperm donation, which means entering into an agreement to purchase sperm is strictly prohibited.

Sperm donation agreements are an important tool for clarifying the parties’ intentions, particularly in terms of parental rights and responsibilities for a future child. A sperm donation agreement sets out who intends to be a parent and who does not.

In Ontario, section 5 of the Children’s Law Reform Act states that a person who provides reproductive material for use in the conception of a child through assisted reproduction is not recognized in law as a parent of the child unless that person is considered a parent through other rules of parentage in the legislation. This means donation of reproductive material, on its own, is not enough to automatically conclude that the donor is not a parent of the child.

Section 7(1) of the Children’s Law Reform Act, a person whose sperm results in the conception of a child conceived through sexual intercourse is recognized in law as a parent of the child.  However, section 7(1) will not apply if, before the child is conceived, the person whose sperm is used and the intended birth parent agree in writing that the person does not intend to be a parent of the child.