Wrongful Birth


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Related to Wrongful Birth: Wrongful life

Wrongful Birth

A Medical Malpractice claim brought by the parents of a child born with birth defects, alleging that negligent treatment or advice deprived them of the opportunity to avoid conception or terminate the pregnancy.

A wrongful birth action is conceptually similar to a Wrongful Life action. In a wrongful birth action, parents seek damages for a child born with birth defects. The claim for damages is based on the cost to parents of raising an unexpectedly defective child. In a wrongful life action, the child seeks damages for being born with a birth defect rather than not being born.

A wrongful birth action was first recognized in Jacobs v. Theimer, 519 S.W.2d 846 (Tex. 1975). The case involved an action by the parents of a child born with defects caused by the mother contracting rubella in her first month of pregnancy. The claim was that the defendant was negligent in failing to diagnose the rubella in the mother. The Texas Supreme Court allowed damages, but only for expenses reasonably necessary for the care and treatment of the child's impairment. The parents were not awarded any noneconomic damages such as damages for pain and suffering.

Most wrongful birth suits had little chance of succeeding before the decriminalization of Abortion by the U.S. Supreme Court in Roe v. Wade, 410 U.S. 113, 93 S. Ct. 705, 35 L. Ed. 2d 147 (1973), since the parents of a child with birth defects could not argue that they would have had an abortion had they known of the defect. In addition, some courts were reluctant to award damages, ruling that it was impossible to weigh the economic and emotional costs of raising an impaired child against the intangible joys of parenthood.

Since the mid-1970s, however, more than twenty states have recognized wrongful birth actions that enable parents to collect some or all of their Child Care expenses if they can prove Negligence. With improved genetic testing, medical providers can routinely determine early in pregnancy the presence of certain birth defects in the fetus. This imposes on medical providers the duty to order the correct tests and to properly diagnose the results.

Cross-references

Tort Law; Wrongful Pregnancy.

References in periodicals archive ?
To determine whether a cause of action for wrongful birth can be brought under Iowa law, the Supreme Court of Iowa uses the three-factor test from Dier v.
lost right to abort through wrongful birth, but wrongful life asserts
(18) "Las primeras acciones de responsabilidad relacionadas con la vida surgen en Estados Unidos hacia los anos sesenta; de hecho, el primer caso que se plantea de wrongful birth y wrongful life es de 1967 (Gleitman vs.
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wrongful birth is based on "the post-conception interference by the
(8) This paper focuses on situations where a healthy baby is born, rather than a disabled child, because following the precedent set out in "wrongful birth" cases the court would likely apply a distinct analysis if dealing with a child born with disabilities.
INSURANCE Clinical negligence: claimant Irwin Mitchell Birmingham Anthony Collins Solicitors LLP Birmingham Challinors Solicitors Birmingham Alsters Kelley LLP Coventry Brindley Twist Tafft & James Coventry Higgs & Sons Brierley Hill Lanyon Bowdler Shrewsbury Shoosmiths Birmingham Sydney Mitchell LLP Birmingham Thompsons Solicitors LLP Birmingham Wood Glaister Solicitors Solihull Wright Hassall LLP Leamington Spa Insurance powerhouse Irwin Mitchell has a large medical team active in complex and challenging cases such as wrongful birth, IVF and cosmetic surgery claims.
In a wrongful birth lawsuit, parents sue a doctor, geneticist or hospital for allegedly failing to perform adequate tests in order to diagnose or prevent a birth defect.
Wrongful birth lawsuits are actually exceedingly uncommon, if not throughout the United States at least in the Midwest.