Donated sperm is available from a regulated sperm bank or a known donor. However, the recruitment, screening and consent of that donor must comply with the HFEA (Human Fertility and Embryology Authority) regulations. Recipients are helped to choose the donor at the clinic and at the time of treatment are given non-identifiable characteristics such as ethnicity, hair colour, eye colour, height and weight, along with information on interests, occupation, religious beliefs etc. The donor has no legal, financial or moral obligations to the child and the recipients are registered as the legal parents subject to completion of the appropriate consents.
Once a child born as a result of treatment using donor sperm reaches the age of 18 they may request identifying information about the donor from the HFEA.
There is a charge to use the sperm and also a cost to reserve sperm for future use, either for further cycles of treatment or for siblings at a later date.