Court of Appeals of the State of New York Clarifies the Statute of Limitations in “Wrongful Birth” Cases
The Court of Appeals, in 1978, recognized a new, narrow cause of action permitting parents to recover the extraordinary care and treatment expenses of a child with a congenital disability resulting from the failure of their doctor to properly warn of their risk of conceiving or giving birth to a child with serious genetic or congenital
abnormalities. (the legal case reference is Becker Schwartz, 46 NY2d 401). These are referred to as “wrongful birth” cases.
The Court of Appeals, now, in its decision of December 14, 2017, clarified that the statute of limitations for the claim of the parents begins to run on the date of the
child’s birth, not on the date that the malpractice occurred. The cases are: No. 126 B.F., et al., Respondents, v. Reproductive Medicine Associates of New York, LLP, et al., Appellants and No. 127 Marie Dennehy, et al., Respondents, v. Alan B. Copperman, M.D., et al., Appellants.
The opinion was authored by Chief Judge DiFiore with Judges Rivera, Stein, Fahey and Wilson concurring. Judge Garcia was the sole dissent.
The Court of Appeals is the highest Court in the State of New York.