PRESS RELEASE – Court of Appeals Rules that Karungi Trial Court May Decide “The Life-Status of the Embryos.”
Lansing, Michigan – The Michigan Court of Appeals has again reversed and remanded the Karungi frozen embryo case back to Oakland County Circuit Court for further proceedings, including deciding the issue of “the life-status of the embryos or whether child custody law applies…” Ms. Karungi filed her brief with Oakland County Circuit Judge Lisa Langton and is requesting that the court grant her custody of the embryos. Copies of the Court of Appeals opinion and her trial court brief are available at www.greatlakesjc.org/karungi_v_ejalu/
The issue in this case revolves around whether the embryos are mere property or are life that is deserving of the court’s protection. The Court of Appeals has now clearly stated that the trial court can determine “the life-status” of these embryos. Michigan law currently protects embryos at all stages of life, for example, in wrongful death actions involving a fetus, restrictions on research involving embryos, and protection of embryos’ property rights in estates.
This case involves cryopreserved embryos and who has the authority to decide their fate. The original judgment stated that a decision on the frozen embryos issue was “preserved for resolution” by the trial court. Subsequent litigation resulted in two denials of Ms. Karungi’s request to be able to bring at least one of the embryos to full term. Ms. Karungi requested custody partially so she could have another child to potentially help her 11-year-old daughter treat her sickle cell disease with stem cells from the baby’s umbilical cord. The Court of Appeals has now reversed the trial court twice and again remanded the case back for further proceedings.
Ms. Karungi is willing to waive any child support or other obligations that the Defendant might incur. As a mother, Ms. Karungi has the constitutional right to make decisions affecting her body and her pre-born children after fertilization. She simply wants to have custody and prevent the destruction of the embryos.
David A. Kallman, Senior Legal Counsel, stated, “The Great Lakes Justice Center fights for the voiceless and stands ready to defend Ms. Karungi’s constitutional right to protect her children.”
For more information contact attorney David Kallman.
The Great Lakes Justice Center is a non-profit corporation dealing with Constitutional liberties and other civil rights issues. The attorneys at the center have spent countless hours to protect its client’s constitutional freedoms and are grateful to minister to such important causes. To support the Great Lakes Justice Center’s important work to protect our nation’s first freedoms, please visit them at www.greatlakesjc.org.