A British woman has just been granted the right to use her dead husband's sperm to have another child, according to The Sun. Jennifer Gaffney and her husband Daniel were getting ready to try for a new addition when Daniel passed away suddenly from a heart attack in 2018. Jennifer was in the process of seeing a specialist to discuss fertility treatment when he passed away,
Despite losing her partner, the 35-year-old wanted to keep their dream alive. With the help of her doctor, they arranged for some of Daniel's tissue to be preserved for later use. It wasn't as simple as going forward with the idea, as Australia's courts had final say over whether Mrs. Gaffney could go ahead. Both Daniel and Jennifer moved to Australia five years ago, where they continued to work as doctors. They shared a son, who was just one year old when his father passed on November 6th.
Jennifer asked the courts for permission to use Daniel's sperm, and a lengthy battle ensued. The Australian Supreme Court wanted to see tangible evidence that the couple were actively trying for a child in the lead up to Mr. Gaffney's death, which Jennifer was able to provide. According to documents, she had an appointment with a fertility specialist just hours before her husband's passing. Presiding judge Justice Sue Brown was ultimately satisfied that Gaffney wasn't acting out of grief, but had rationally come to the decision.
The mother of one admitted to reporters that she carefully considered her reasons for wanting a second child, even though she's now widowed. She came to the conclusion that it's what Daniel would have wanted, and it would be in the best interests of her son, Nate, to have a sibling from both of the same parents. Daniel and Jennifer had been together for 12 years up until his death.
This type of decision is rare for an Australian court. Had Mrs. Gaffney not been actively seeing a specialist, she may have lacked sufficient evidence to prove that she and her husband were trying for a second child. In most cases, judges deny the request. As for Mrs. Gaffney, we wish her and her son nothing but the best.