Q&As

Is it possible to make a claim for injury to a foetus (at four weeks gestation) after mother was involved in a road traffic accident (RTA)? The child was born with a significant heart defect that required corrective surgery abroad.

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Produced in partnership with David Green of 12 King's Bench Walk
Published on LexisPSL on 11/07/2018

The following PI & Clinical Negligence Q&A produced in partnership with David Green of 12 King's Bench Walk provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Is it possible to make a claim for injury to a foetus (at four weeks gestation) after mother was involved in a road traffic accident (RTA)? The child was born with a significant heart defect that required corrective surgery abroad.

Section 1(1) of the Congenital Disabilities (Civil Liability) Act 1976 (CD(CL)A 1976) permits an action to be brought by (or on behalf of) a child after it is born, if the child’s disability (in this case, the heart defect) can be linked under normal causation principles to a defendant’s negligence in a road traffic accident.

‘1 Civil liability to child born disabled

(1) If a child is born disabled as the result of such an occurrence before its birth as is mentioned in subsection (2) below, and a person (other than the child's own mother) is under this section answerable to the child in respect of the occurrence, the child's disabilities are to be regarded as damage resulting from the wrongful act of that person and actionable accordingly at the suit of the child.

(2) An occurrence to which this section applies is one which—

(a) affected either parent of the

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