LOS ANGELES (CNS) - Sofia Vergara's former fiance, who is suing the Beverly Hills reproductive center where the ex-couple had embryos created in anticipation of having a family, says in new court papers that he was never told what would happen to the embryos in the event of the pair's breakup.
In a sworn declaration submitted Friday with Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Stephen Goorvitch, pro-life actor and businessman Nick Loeb says ART Reproductive Services LLC was obligated to provide him and Vergara with an advance written directive as to what would be done to the embryos in various circumstances, including the separation of them as partners. ART never showed the two such a form or had such a discussion with them, according to Loeb.
"I never would have gone forward with creating what Sofia and I regarded as lives if I knew that she would not consent, or that she wanted to thaw and destroy the embryos, in the event of a breakup," Loeb says.
Loeb further says he believed Vergara shared his views about when life begins.
"I am pro-life and pro-parenthood and my religious views are such that I believe that life begins at conception," Loeb says. "Throughout the course of our relationship, I expressed these views to Sofia, who similarly expressed to me that she was a devout Catholic and therefore also believed that life begins at conception. She told me that she regarded embryos as `lives."'
Loeb says that although he did sign a form allowing for the embryos to be thawed and destroyed if he or Vergara died, he also signed a second document that contradicted those terms.
Loeb's declaration was filed in opposition to a motion by ART's attorneys to dismiss the plaintiff's one remaining claim for medical negligence, which is scheduled to be heard April 24.
According to ART's lawyers' court papers, Loeb and Vergara underwent in vitro fertility treatments at the facility in 2013 that resulted in the creation of two pre-embryos that are "cryopreserved" at ART. Loeb and Vergara agreed in writing that one party could not use the material to create a child without the written consent of the other, according to ART's attorneys' court papers.
"The one fact that has been undisputed in every iteration of the lawsuits over these embryos is that Ms. Vergara has not and will not consent to Mr. Loeb using the embryos," according to ART's lawyers' court papers, which further state that it would be a felony to allow Loeb to use the embryos without Vergara's signed permission.
Loeb says in the suit brought in June 2020 that he and Vergara began their relationship in 2010, became engaged in 2012, started discussing plans to have a family and agreed to create embryos at ART.
After the first round of IVF, a surrogate mother was unable to produce a child with two embryos, so Loeb and Vergara consulted with ART about a second round of treatments in November 2013 that produced two more embryos, according to Loeb.
In one of the separate legal actions between Vergara and Loeb, the actress, now 50, sued Loeb in February 2016, seeking a court order declaring that any attempts by Loeb, now 47, to bring the embryos to term would be a breach of their original contract. Vergara won that case in February 2021.
Vergara and "True Blood" star Joe Manganiello, now 46, became engaged on Christmas Eve 2014 after dating for six months and married in November 2015.