My wife died before we could have a baby – now I'm begging the courts to let me use her frozen eggs to start a family
6th May 2022

A HUSBAND is begging top judges to let him use his late wife's eggs after she died before they could have a baby together.

Ted Jennings, 38, wants to use an embryo created with his sperm and Fern-Marie Choya's eggs in a surrogate mother.

He has gone to the High Court with the case in the hope judges will fulfill his and his wife's wish to have a child together.

But the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority say it should be dismissed as Fern-Marie did not provide written consent.

The court was told accountant Fern-Marie underwent three unsuccessful cycles of IVF treatment in 2013 and 2014.

She conceived naturally in 2015 and 2016 but tragically suffered two miscarriages.

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The couple then had further IVF in 2017 and 2018 after rem-mortgaging their home in Highbury, North London, to pay for the treatment.

The second proved successful and Fern-Marie fell pregnant in late 2018.

Tragically she developed complications at 18 weeks which resulted in a uterine rupture.

Fern-Marie passed away the following February and one embryo was kept in storage.

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Jenni Richards QC, for Jennings, told the court: "The evidence is that Ms Choya would have wanted Mr Jennings to be able to use their partner-created embryo in treatment with a surrogate in the event of her death," said Ms Richards in a written case outline.

"In all the circumstances, it can, and should, be inferred that Ms Choya would have provided written consent to Mr Jennings being able to use their partner-created embryo in treatment with a surrogate in the event of her death had she been given the opportunity to do so."

The lawyer argued preventing the widower from using the embryo would be a "significant interference" with his human rights.

But Kate Gallafent QC, for the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority, said using it without written consent from Fern-Marie would be "unlawful".

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She added: "It is common ground between the parties that Ms Choya did not provide written consent to the embryo being used by Mr Jennings in treatment with a surrogate in the event of her death."

Mrs Justice Theis will deliver her judgment at a later date.

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