The government of Costa Rica will pay $360,000 in compensation to 18 couples impacted by the country's ban on in vitro fertilization, officials said Tuesday.
The payment, in compliance with a ruling by the Inter-American Court of Human Rights, will be made on February 25, said Communications Minister Francisco Chacon.
Each couple will receive about $20,000, while $60,000 will be made available for lawyer fees, he said.
The Inter-American Court of Human Rights condemned in December Costa Rica's ban on in vitro fertilization, which was declared unconstitutional by the country's Supreme Court in 2000.
In its ruling, the court said the ban affected the rights to private and family life, reproductive rights and the personal integrity of those affected.
The judges said that "the decision to be a father or mother is part of the right to privacy and includes, in this case, the decision to be a mother or father in the genetic or biological sense."
The court ordered that assisted reproduction be reinstated, and the government promised it would fully comply.
Religious conservatives had called for banning the practice, saying it was a violation of privacy because it involved discarding embryos.
Explore further: Microsoft CEO sees 'bold' plan as 4Q tops Street