Kansas sperm donor asks for judgment without trial

A Topeka man being pursued for child support by the state after he donated sperm to a lesbian couple is asking a judge to rule in his favor before a trial.

An attorney for William Marotta filed a motion this week in Shawnee County District Court asking for the summary judgment for his client, contending that the Kansas Department for Children and Families is asking the court to do “what no court has ever done” in concluding that a sperm donor is a father when neither the donor nor the biological mother is seeking that result.

The state contends that Marotta must pay child support because he is the father of a girl born to a lesbian couple in 2009. Marotta argues that he and the couple signed a contract waiving his parental rights and responsibilities.

The state filed a motion in May seeking a summary judgment in its favor. Timothy Keck, a co-counsel for the state, contended in that motion that the contract between Marotta and the couple was invalid because they didn’t follow a Kansas law that requires a licensed physician to perform the artificial insemination in cases involving sperm donors.

Keck’s motion also asked the court to order genetic testing on the child but District Judge Mary Mattivi put that request on hold while she considered other issues.

Marotta’s attorney, Benoit Swinnen, argued in his motion that the court should apply well-settled law to conclude that the sperm donor contract in Marotta’s case is valid and enforceable. He also asked that the court find Marotta is not the girl’s father and that he has no responsibility to pay any child support or other expenses related to the child.

An Aug. 13 status hearing is the next court action scheduled in the case.