If a doctor improperly performs a vasectomy and a woman becomes pregnant by you, are you still legally liable for child support?

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If a doctor improperly performs a vasectomy and a woman becomes pregnant by you, are you still legally liable for child support?

If a man was to get a vasectomy and the doctor did something wrong I believe you can sue the doctor because he did something wrong in the procedure, but what if everything seems kosher and you take all the correct tests to insure you are completely sterile and a short period of time later a woman turns up pregnant by you. When the child is born you get a paternity test and the child is yours. Are you legally obligated to pay child support for that child if you have all the paperwork showing the doctor is at fault?

Asked on January 31, 2011 under Family Law, North Carolina

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Yes, you would likely be liable for child support, just as you would be a condom broke or the woman was on the Pill but it failed (no birth control is 100% fool proof). Whenever you father a child, you could be held responsible for child support. If there was a failure by someone or something else--in this case, the doctor who botched a vascetomy--you may be able to sue that person to receive compensation; however, your right to do so does not mean that you yourself are not liable for child support. It merely gives you someone else to look to for payment or compensation, which will help offset your own liabilities.


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