A Georgia man is attempting to force the surrogate mother of his triplets to abort one of the fetuses because he did not want three children. Melissa Cook is now fighting back after being legally threatened by the children’s father.
Cook, who is 47-years old, was implanted with the three embryos and all three began developing normally. The mother of the triplets is an egg donor. It is not uncommon for doctors to implant more than one embryo since there is no guarantee that even one will develop.
Cook’s contract with the Georgia father says that she will be paid $33,000 for the pregnancy, plus $6,000 for each additional child. Apparently, he wanted only two children and wanted Cook to schedule a “selection reduction”, which would abort one of the fetuses.
Cook lives in California where the law states that babies cannot be aborted once the fetus is considered to be viable outside of the womb – usually between 20 and 24 weeks. She was in her 17th week when the father made the request, but she stood her ground even under threat from the Georgia man.
The father’s lawyer sent Cook a letter, which in part states: ‘His remedies, were you to refuse to abide by the agreement, include but are not limited to loss of all benefits under the agreement…’
Cook’s lawyers filed a complaint with the Los Angeles state Superior Court claiming that the contract with the biological father, and the California surrogate law it relies on, violate due-process and equal-protection rights under the U.S. Constitution.
Cook maintains that she is the mother of the triplets and is seeking custody of at least one who was targeted for abortion.
The Georgia father is now apparently backing down from his demands. His attorneys say he was asking for “selection reduction” for health reasons based on a doctor’s opinion. He now is not planning any legal action against Ms. Cook.
If you have legal questions, please consult our Online Legal Directory to find an attorney in your area.