Can I sue my birth mother for my birth defects?

UPDATED: Apr 8, 2015

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Can I sue my birth mother for my birth defects?

After all if you break someone’s neck, you would be sued. I have Partial Fetal Alcohol syndrome, ADHD and Asperger syndrome. It is unknown if my birth mother’s alcohol consumption may of caused it but I have Fetal Alcohol syndrome may of caused it. I have 3 heart aneurisms and mild Arthritis.

Asked on April 8, 2015 under Personal Injury, Michigan


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 7 years ago | Contributor

It is VERY unlikely you could successfully bring this suit.

1) Causality: you'd have to show, by expert medical testimony, that each defect for which you seek compensation *was* caused by your mother's alcohal consumption, not just that it "may" have caused it.

2) Negligence: you'd have to show that your mother did consumer alcohol in an amount which could be considered negligent by what was known *at that time*--you can't use contemporary medical knowledge to judge whether she was negligent or not.

3) Statute of limitations: you do not state your age, but depending on your age, too much time may have passed. Once the statutory time line for how long you have to sue has passed, you can no longer bring a lawsuit.

4) Policy: it's not clear that a court would sustain the suit, since the logical corollary of your suit is that if your mother was consuming alcohol, posing a risk of birth defect to her unborn child, she should have aborted that child.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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