The decision to donate human gametes (eggs or sperm) is a generous gift.  Donors can have a range of motivations, feelings, expectations and questions regarding the outcome of their donation, and may have thoughts about possible contact with people born of their donation. 

Some people may have donated at a time when anonymity was assured, others who have donated since 2004 would have done so with signed consent for the disclosure of their identifying details once they turned 16.

Donors can be confident that no child born from their donation has any legal rights to inheritance. Donor conceived people have a variety of reasons for seeking information and contact with their donor including a desire to understand and explore their genetic and social history, seeking medical information, as well as curiosity regarding likenesses in physical appearances and interests.

Applying to DCIS

Donors can apply to access a non-identifying report that is verified by the Department, which would provide the year and sex at birth of any person born of their donation. Donors can also apply to have their details added to the DCIS register and to record their contact preference – including ‘no’ contact.

If a donor already has their donor code from the fertility clinic, then this may assist DCIS to process the application.

How to apply

Complete the

email to

Confirmation of your identity is required prior to processing your application for information. To protect the privacy of all participants in donor conception, DCIS requires electronic applications to be submitted with an accompanying Statutory Declaration of Identity (PDF 207KB)

You will need to get this declaration and your ID documents witnessed prior to your application being processed.  The professions that can witness Statutory Declarations in WA and the ID documents you will require are listed on the form. Please read this carefully and complete it before providing a copy with your completed application form. 

You do not need to disclose to the person witnessing the form the reason for the application if you do not want to, this is private information, they do not need to witness your application just confirm your identity. Do not send DCIS copies of your identity documents with your application. 

Once DCIS confirms that there is information available, prior to sharing any information with you, DCIS counsellors will need to sight original photo ID, so please bring your ID when you come to your appointment.  If you are not able to attend a face-to-face appointment, verification will be done by video. If you do not have photo identification, please phone DCIS during office hours after you have submitted your application.

Importance of applying to DCIS

Some donor conceived people are finding their donor through DNA tests and through their own private searches. Donors’ wishes regarding contact should be respected. However, in many instances, a donor’s preferences regarding contact are unknown and this is a reason to record your preference through a DCIS application. 

If your preference regarding contact with donor conceived offspring is known, DCIS can advise donor conceived people of this preference, explain the legal requirements regarding consent for contact, and encourage donor conceived people to respect these preferences.

If a donor isn’t sure how they feel about contact, the DCIS counsellor can talk through thoughts and family circumstances that may influence the choice a donor may make regarding contact.

Your experience and life circumstances at the time your donation was made may influence your decision about contact and DCIS is available to answer questions, assist with access to information and to talk through with you any concerns that this might raise.

Accessing an information report

Regardless of when a donation was made, DCIS can check sources of information and determine if there is relevant data that can legally be provided to you. 

The treatment register

The WA Department of Health holds records of fertility treatments from April 1993 onwards. Current legislation enables access to non-identifying information held regarding treatments after 1993.   It is possible that if a donation was made prior to 1993, the donation may have been used after 1993, which means information may be available. Non-identifying information can be applied for at any time.  Identity checks and processing times of several weeks apply for information requests.

Fertility clinics

Donors can apply direct to the fertility clinic where their donation was made for access to their donor code or non-identifying birth outcome information.  In some instances, clinics may have kept records for treatments that occurred prior to 1993, although they were not legally required to do so, as this was their usual practice as a health service. Unfortunately, some clinics have closed, and records may have been destroyed or are not available. 

When the department retrieves information from the treatment register, this information is sent to the fertility clinic for verification prior to the report being generated for DCIS.

The DCIS register history

From 2002  2018 the WA Department of Health maintained a voluntary register of donors, donor conceived people and donor recipient parents who wished to consent to share their information outside of the legislative frameworks. Between 2018 and 2022 Jigsaw DNA Connect (a non-government organisation) was contracted by the department to manage individual applications to match and connect people with their genetic relatives. This service is now operated by DCIS and will work to connect historical information of people who consent and who apply direct to DCIS. 

No information has been deleted from the previous registers. However, DCIS will require individuals to confirm their identity and update their consent preferences.

Contact between donor related people

Contact between donor related people can be arranged by mutual consent, however confidentiality requirements of the legislation still apply.

If two people who are related through donation have both registered their details, then they are considered a ‘match’. When this happens, DCIS will attempt to confirm the match through the Treatment Register and the fertility clinic where the treatment was undertaken. Once this has been confirmed, DCIS will contact both parties and discuss with them which details (non-identifying or identifying) they consent in writing to share. This matching service appointment allows both parties to consider the implications of sharing information, making contact and how they wish to progress a potential relationship. It is important to note that some people are eager to meet the other person, and some are reluctant or do not want contact.  This service can be provided face-to-face, by video or phone.  Follow up appointments to discuss the outcomes of any contact can also be provided.

When a match can’t be confirmed

If the individuals who registered their details were conceived prior to 1993, DCIS will not be able to confirm they are a match. This is because the details are not held within the Department’s Treatment Register and cannot be verified. If this situation occurs, DCIS will still contact both parties to discuss what this means.

When no information exists

DCIS understands that it may be difficult for donors when people born of their donation were conceived prior to 1993 when no records have been kept. Fertility clinics are the primary source of information. DCIS will ask the Department to search all available data sources they hold, and a report will still be generated.  However, for some people, it will confirm that no information is held and potentially; no current matches are available on the DCIS register.

Individual applicants will be given the option to receive their report in person, by phone, post or email. Knowing that it can sometimes be difficult, DCIS recommend that donors consider coming in person to this appointment. DCIS counsellors will discuss the implications and impact of this report and what the available next steps may be. It is still a useful process to apply and add your details to the DCIS register – as a match may be added at any point in the future.

Other counselling

DCIS is aware that at various times, issues may arise for donors who may or may not have their own legal children; or where illness or a significant health issue is experienced by you or a close family member. If this is something that you think is relevant to having provided a donation and that you may benefit from a dedicated therapeutic conversation with a Counsellor, you may contact DCIS.

DCIS employs social workers who have an excellent understanding of complex family dynamics and the issues affecting donors. They are available for brief counselling interventions and referrals to other services.  Please contact DCIS to make an appointment.

Frequently asked questions

If I was a donor prior to April 1993 what are my options for receiving information?

Fertility clinics are the primary source of information.  It is unlikely that the Department of Health will have information about donations used in WA before April 1993. For every DCIS application the information held by the Department of Health will be searched, and when enabled by legislation, the results will be provided. Due to the length of time that a donation can be used for; it is possible that a donation collected before 1993 was used after 1993, in which case some records may be held.  Fertility clinics were not mandated to keep information prior to 1993, although in some instances records still exist.  Donors can contact fertility clinics directly to obtain their donor code and a non-identifying list of people born from their donation.

Why do donor conceived people try to contact their donor?

Donor conceived people have a variety of reasons for seeking information and contact with their donor including a desire to understand and explore their social and genetic origins, seeking medical information, as well as curiosity regarding likenesses in physical appearances and interests.Donors can be confident that no child born from their donation has any legal rights to inheritance of their property.

If I register with DCIS, will you automatically share my contact details with people born from my donation?

No. When a match is made in our records, DCIS will contact you to discuss your current circumstances, wishes and preferences for contact. You will be allowed to think through the implications of contacting anyone you are matched with, given options and choice. We will only share information you have given us with your written consent to provide this to another specified party. You will be contacted each time there is a match and can make different decisions each time about what you are comfortable to share.

Where to get help

Donor Conception Information Service
Phone: 0457 619 376

Support groups

This publication is provided for education and information purposes only. It is not a substitute for professional advice. Information about a service, product or treatment does not imply endorsement and is not intended to replace professional advice. Readers should note that over time currency and completeness of the information may change. All users should seek advice from a qualified professional for answers to their questions.