top cx logo
cx logo
Explorearrow down
search icon

Over-60s ‘too old’ to father test-tube babies

Court ruling sets legal age of procreation at ‘about 59’

Men over the age of “about 59” are too old to father test-tube babies in France after a court ruling set the legal age of procreation for males.

Judges had been asked by the Agence de la Biomédecine to rule after two men in the 60s were able to father medically assisted babies.

The agency had tried to prevent access as the men were aged 68 and 69 at the time of their requests, but the men won a court ruling that they could export the frozen sperm, and it was later used by their wives in in Belgium and Spain.

Saying there was a need to “clarify the regulations”, the agency took the case to a higher administrative court. This ruled that “with regard to available scientific understanding” the age of procreation under the public health code should be set at “about 59” as above that age the “reproductive capacities of men were generally impaired”.

The decision does not stop men from fathering babies naturally but gives the agency the right to refuse to hand over frozen sperm samples.

In France, assisted reproductive technology is legally restricted to heterosexual couples of “procreation age” who suffer from recognised infertility or who risk transmitting a serious illness to any child. This is funded by Assurance Maladie up to the age of 43 for women and 60 for men.

Stay informed:
Sign up to our free weekly e-newsletter
Subscribe to access all our online articles and receive our printed monthly newspaper The Connexion at your home. News analysis, features and practical help for English-speakers in France

Resident or second-home owner in France?
Benefit from our daily digest of headlines and how-to's to help you make the most of life in France
By joining the newsletter, you agree to our Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy
See more popular articles
The Connexion Help Guides
featured helpguide
Visa and residency cards for France*
Featured Help Guide
- Visas and residency cards (cartes de séjour) for France help guide - Understand when visas and residency cards are required to move to France or come for an extended stay - Applies to Britons (post-Brexit) and to all other non-EU/non-EEA/Swiss nationalities - Useful to anyone considering a move to France, whether for work or otherwise, or wanting to spend more than three months at their French second home
Get news, views and information from France