Does a doctor owe a duty of care to a fetus/unborn child?

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Does a doctor owe a duty of care to a fetus/unborn child?

Asked on April 13, 2011 under Malpractice Law, Alaska

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

This question is best asked to an attorney in your area.  There are many factors that come in to play here.  There is undoubtedly a duty of care owned to the mother and to the fetus, but what the duty of care is and if it was breached is very fact specific.  If, say, a doctor fails to monitor a fetus in child birth and it results in brain damage to the child due to lack of oxygen or some other reason then the duty is somewhat easy to see there.  But you have not given any information here as to the specifics of what happened here, the stage of development of the fetus or the care or lack of care given.   Please seek consultation here.  It should be free of charge.  Good luck to you.


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