Wrongful Birth

Wrongful Birth

When things don’t go to plan…


Most of us like the comfort and security that comes with having a plan. However, there are times when, no matter how well prepared we are, things simply do not go as we intended.

This can sometimes be the case with pregnancy and childbirth.

A claim for compensation for wrongful birth occurs when:

  • The mother gives birth to a child and she has been deprived of the opportunity to terminate the pregnancy.

A failure to carry out a termination can arise because of mistakes in the pregnancy testing, errors in the scans or mistakes in the termination procedure itself.

In such cases the claim is limited to compensation to the mother for the pain and distress caused by the latter stages of the pregnancy and the delivery, plus a relatively small award for the first few months of the baby’s life.

  • The baby has been born with a birth defect that could have been corrected if the proper diagnostic tests had been carried out.

If a baby is born with birth defects, then the entire additional cost of raising a disabled child can be claimed. A claim can arise if the various diagnostic tests carried out before birth fail to show the baby has any of the genetic conditions which the tests should have identified.

If the mother is given false reassurance and relied on that reassurance to make the decision not to terminate the pregnancy and the baby is then born with a genetic condition, then a claim for compensation may arise. The mother would need to establish that if she had been given the correct diagnosis in time, she would have opted for a termination.

A claim can also arise if the mother is given drugs while pregnant that are known to cause birth defects. It may still be possible to bring a claim even if it is uncertain as to whether the prescribed drugs have, in fact, caused any birth defects. This is because some types of birth defects do not show up straight away and only become obvious later on.

If you are facing an issue such as wrongful birth, we understand it is an emotional time. Our expert team offer a sympathetic approach while proactively working in your best interests.

To find out more and to discuss your specific requirements, contact us.

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