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Court Rules Clinic not Liable for Child Support

Posted on in Family Law
KerryA Madison, WI appeals court has ruled that a clinic that accidentally gave a patient pre-natal vitamins instead of birth control pills is not responsible for child support payments for the child she conceived because of the clinic’s error. However, the court says she can sue for financial damages for pain and suffering during and after her pregnancy, loss of future earning capacity and postpartum depression. The appeals court has sent the case back to trial court. According to a report by the Associated Press, Shelby Nell went to the clinic in February 2009 to have her birth control prescription filled. Instead, she was given the vitamins, and immediately became pregnant. She gave birth to a baby boy in December 2009. Nell and the boy’s father, Austin Omernick, sued the clinic in family court, but the court ruled that public policy considerations such as preventing fraud and making sure awards are fair to defendants protected the clinic from liability in their case. The couple appealed. The appeals court did note that neither the couple nor the clinic cited any court ruling where a parent can recover the costs of raising a healthy child born after a medical provider negligently fails to provide prescribed birth control pills. However, the court said that in order to hold the clinic liable for financial support of the baby, a parent would have had to have undergone an unsuccessful sterilization. If you are considering any legal action regarding child support payments against another party, consult with a qualified Illinois family law attorney to represent you and make sure the best interest of your child are protected.
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