Court ruling: Parents of fallen IDF soldier allowed to conceive child from his sperm

The Petah Tikva Family Court ruled today that the parents of IDF soldier Omri Shahar, who was killed in a traffic accident during his military service, will be able to use the sperm that was extracted from him immediately after his death in order to conceive a child and raise him.
Omri Shahar. Photo courtesy of the family Photo Credit: Channel 2 News

Following a three and a half year struggle, the Petah Tikva Family Court ruled in favor of Irit and Asher Shahar, the parents of fallen IDF soldier Omri Shahar, who have asked for permission to conceive a child from their son’s sperm.

Omri, who served as an Israeli Navy commander, was killed in a traffic accident in June 2012 while returning from an evening organized by his IDF unit. The decision to extract sperm from their son was reached by the parents as early as the night of his accident and since then, they have been in a struggle to receive legal approval to use the sperm to conceive a child, whom they plan on adopting and raising themselves.

Will become a father after his death. Photo courtesy of the family Photo Credit: Channel 2 News

This court ruling was the latest in a series of legal proceedings on the issue of conceiving children to parents that have passed away. In 2003, it was first determined that the spouse of the deceased is the only one who has the authority to use his genetic material but in 2007, a sperm donation from a deceased person to a woman he never knew was approved for the first time after his parents testified that he had expressed his will to conceive a child while still alive and stressed that they chose a specific woman following a strict screening process. In 2009, the court ruled in favor of a woman in her late 30’s who asked to be impregnated by the sperm of a soldier who was diagnosed with cancer and froze his sperm before his death.

The case of the Shahar family is the first in which the parents have asked to receive authorization to conceive a child from their fallen son and raise him or her themselves, making them both the parents and the grandparents of the child simultaneously.


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