Settlement reached in Connecticut fetal death case


A wrongful death action in Connecticut sometimes involves complex legal, scientific and constitutional issues beyond the events surrounding a fatal workplace accident or car accident. A recent medical malpractice lawsuit posed significant and novel questions, normally related to debates on abortion, on whether a fetus may be considered a person for legal purposes. Settlement of this case, however, may leave many controversial questions unresolved.

A Stanford obstetrician-gynecologist was sued for wrongful death and malpractice for allegedly causing the death of a 22-week-old fetus in 2011. The fetus died less than two hours after being born.

The parents alleged that the physician ruptured the mother's fetal membrane while she was trying to remove an intrauterine birth device. They claimed that the doctor did not confirm the patient was not pregnant before this procedure.

The lawsuit was controversial because it posed the issue of whether a wrongful death lawsuit was viable if the fetus was not significantly developed for survival outside the womb. A judge ruled that the lawsuit could proceed to trial because Connecticut court decisions did not specifically address this issue and cases from other states were split.

Resolution of this issue for other legal cases will not be addressed by Connecticut's appellate courts. The trial judge dismissed the lawsuit on December 31 after the parties reached a settlement. The agreement's terms were undisclosed.

Legal representation can help families confront the myriad of complex issues that can accompany a wrongful death lawsuit. A qualified and experienced law firm can help families who lose a loved one protect their right to compensation in trials and settlement negotiations.

Source: Hartford Courant, "Connecticut fetal death lawsuit settled," Jan. 4, 2016

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information
Email Us For A Response
    • Martindale-Hubbell Peer Rated for Ethical Standards and Legal Ability
    • 2018 Avvo Client Choice Award
    • Avvo Rated Best Attorney
    • Expertise 2020
    • National Trial Lawyers Top 100 Trial Lawyers
    • Lawyers Of Distinction 2019
    • 2020 10 Best Connecticut Attorney in Client Satisfaction
    • 10 Best 2015 - Client Satisfaction - American Institute of Personal Injury Attorneys (TM)
    • 2015 Top 10 Best Connecticut Law Firms
    • 10 Best 2015 - Client Satisfaction - 10 Best Law Firms - American Institute of Personal Injury Attorneys (TM)
    • 15 Years | Marquis Who's Who | Marquis Who's Who in American Law | Marquis Who's Who in America | Marquis Who's Who In the World | Marquis Who's Who In the Finance and Industry
    • Avvo - Rate your Lawyer. Get Free Legal Advice

*AV Preeminent and BV Distinguished are certification marks of Reed Elsevier Properties Inc., used in accordance with the Martindale-Hubbell certification procedures, standards and policies. Martindale-Hubbell is the facilitator of a peer review rating process. Ratings reflect the confidential opinions of members of the Bar and the judiciary. Martindale-Hubbell ratings fall into two categories - legal ability and general ethical standards.

*AV Preeminent and BV Distinguished are certification marks of Reed Elsevier Properties Inc., used in accordance with the Martindale-Hubbell certification procedures, standards and policies. Martindale-Hubbell is the facilitator of a peer review rating process. Ratings reflect the confidential opinions of members of the Bar and the judiciary. Martindale-Hubbell ratings fall into two categories - legal ability and general ethical standards.

Contact The Law Offices Of James L. O'Rourke Today

If you have been injured in an accident, our experienced personal injury attorneys will help you pursue the full compensation you deserve. To schedule a free consultation, contact us online or call 203-864-4427. We are ready to take your call 24/7. Evening and weekend appointments are available upon request, as are home or hospital room visits. Spanish translation services are available.

Office ${site.data.firmName}${SEMFirmNameAlt}

Stratford Office
1825 Barnum Avenue, Suite 201
Stratford, CT 06614

Toll Free: 800-658-1245
Phone: 203-864-4427
Fax: 203-377-2770
Stratford Law Office Map

Shelton Office
221 Nells Rock Road
Shelton, CT 06484

Toll Free: 800-658-1245
Phone: 203-864-4427
Fax: 203-377-2770
Shelton Law Office Map