Disabled mother whose sterilisation failed cannot claim the extra costs of bringing up a childBMJ 2003; 327 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.327.7421.950-d (Published 23 October 2003) Cite this as: BMJ 2003;327:950
- Clare Dyer, legal correspondent
Any disabled woman who gives birth to a normal, healthy child after a negligently performed sterilisation operation is not entitled to sue for the extra childcare costs she incurs because of her disability, the House of Lords ruled last week.
The United Kingdom's highest court sat, unusually, with seven judges instead of the usual five because it was being asked to overturn a unanimous judgment reached by five of its judges only four years ago.
But the law lords refused to hold that that case, Macfarlane v Tayside Health Board, had been wrongly decided in 1999. The judges in that case decided that parents who have …