March 2009 Archives

March 4, 2009

Ex-Husband Can't Have Kidney or Money for It

Last month, I posted about a man trying to draw attention to his contested custody case by demanding either money or return of the kidney he donated to his ex-wife years before. Not surprisingly, the New York court hearing the case decided against him, ruling that public policy bars his claims for compensation -- he couldn't even get into court to have a transplant doctor testify as an expert about the value of the kidney. The court declined to apply the rule that gifts given from one spouse to the other during the marriage are marital property and can be divided at divorce, stating that while "the term 'marital propery' is elastic and expansive,'" the elastic doesn't stretch to encompass human organs.