Building Legacies that Last Estate Planning and Elder Law

Cloning and Estate Planning

MP900262644As far as anyone knows, there are not any clones of humans walking around yet.  However, it might soon be possible. That could have some interesting effects on estate planning.

The idea of cloning humans has been a science fiction staple for a long time. The original premise was that an exact genetic match could be made with all of the knowledge, memories and personality of the original human reproduced in the clone.

The reproduction of things learned after birth is not likely anytime soon, so an almost identical genetic clone might be far off. America recently learned that Barbra Streisand had successfully cloned one of her dogs twice as The New York Times reported in "Barbra Streisand Cloned Her Dog. For $50,000 You Can Clone Yours."

It is likely that some scientist somewhere will set aside ethical concerns and figure out how to clone humans. That could have a profound impact on estate planning. There is currently no legal status for clones.

Someday, the laws of intestate succession may need to determine whether clones have an equal or greater or lesser priority than children. It also might make a difference when and by whom the clone was made.  

Science has never had a major impact on estate planning. The possibility of cloning and the possibility of “eternal life” that other researchers are working on could soon change things.

Reference: New York Times (Feb. 28, 2018) "Barbra Streisand Cloned Her Dog. For $50,000 You Can Clone Yours."