While having children is often a blessed event in a couple’s life, it is also a highly personal choice. While friends and family may feel free to offer their opinions, no one can tell a couple that they should have children, when the right time to have a child is, or even how many children would be right for their family. While couples or individuals may take a variety of actions to ensure they do not get pregnant, unfortunately medical mistakes and errors can work against them. Wrongful pregnancy is a little known area of law to many people, but it is an area that can have lifelong repercussions for those impacted.
What is Wrongful Pregnancy?
According to HeinOnline, a leading internet based law journal library, wrongful pregnancy refers to a situation in which the wrongful or negligent acts of a third party interferes with efforts to prevent pregnancy and conception on the part of a couple. A complaint of wrongful pregnancy may arise out of the following types of situations:
- Defective or inadequate birth control devices;
- Failed sterilization procedures, such as a failed tubal ligation or failed vasectomy; or
- Unsuccessful abortion procedures.
Often, the reasons parents wish to prevent a pregnancy or birth are personal and not relevant to their case. There are times however that these reasons come into play, such as if there are fears of birth defects or genetic abnormalities which the parents wish to avoid passing onto a child.
How a Lawyer Can Help
In the event of a wrongful pregnancy, you may be entitled to compensation through a medical malpractice lawsuit. Under Chapter 31 of the Oregon Revised Statutes, you may be able to file for damages against a doctor or surgeon who performed a sterilization procedure or attempted to provide an abortion, as well as pharmacists who may have made errors when it comes to filling your prescription for birth control. You always may be able to file for damages stemming from faulty devices that resulted in wrongful damages. According to the Pace Law Review, the types of damages you may be entitled to claim in a wrongful pregnancy lawsuit include the following:
- Damages for medical expenses related to the pregnancy;
- Costs associated with future sterilization procedures that will be required;
- Pain and suffering connected with both the pregnancy and birth;
- Loss of earnings for the mother during the pregnancy; and
- Mental anguish and stress due to the situation.
Parents may also be entitled to damages based on the costs of rearing their child, as well as any medical treatments which may be required by the child, treatments the parents had hoped to avoid by avoiding the pregnancy.
Let Us Assist You
If you or someone you love has suffered a wrongful pregnancy, contact an experienced Portland wrongful pregnancy attorney immediately. At the Johnston Law Firm, we understand the devastating impacts an unplanned pregnancy can have on you, your family, and your future security. We can advise you on whether you may be entitled to compensation through a lawsuit, while providing the compassionate, caring legal service you deserve. Call or contact us online at our Portland office today for a free, confidential review of your case.