04/26/2012 08:11 EDT | Updated 06/26/2012 05:12 EDT

Sperm Ruled An Asset In B.C. Lesbian Divorce


The B.C. Supreme Court is ordering a lesbian couple, now separated, to divide leftover sperm from their donor as part of the division of their assets.

The couple began a relationship in 1998 and each had one child during the marriage, using the donor sperm.

The pair, whose identities have not been made public, separated in 2006 and have a custody agreement for their two children.

But in dividing their assets, they didn't deal with 13 vials of donor sperm being stored at the Genesis Fertility Clinic in Vancouver.

One of the women petitioned for sole custody of the sperm, while the other wanted the vials destroyed.

At issue is whether the sperm can be considered property.

In a ruling made public Thursday, Madame Justice Russell said the vials are property that can be divided between the two parties.

One woman will receive seven vials, the other six, with half the value of the extra vial being paid out in cash.