High Court says ‘no’ to father in IVF dispute

Family Law|October 6th 2017

A father whose ex-partner had an embryo implanted without his consent has lost a claim for damages in the High Court.

The couple had created a number of fertilised embryos following an earlier successful round of IVF treatment, which had led to the birth of a son. They stored these at a fertility clinic in London, under an annually renewable agreement. But then, in 2010, the relationship broke down and they went their separate ways. Later the man, referred to as ‘ARB’, received a text message from his ex informing him that she was pregnant.

She had reportedly forged his signature on a form requesting the implantation of one of the embryos. As the father his consent had been required. A daughter was subsequently born, to the father’s dismay.

He promptly sued the clinic for damages, arguing that they should pay for her upbringing, including school fees, holidays and even her wedding, the BBC reports.

But the High Court has now ruled that the clinic was not negligent under law. Nevertheless, noted Mr Justice Jay:

“Although he has lost this case, my judgment must be seen as a complete personal and moral vindication for ARB. The same, of course, cannot be said for [the mother].”

The clinic, naturally, welcomed the ruling, and insisted it had since changed its procedures so similar deceptions could not result in the birth of a child.

ARB, meanwhile, plans to take his case to the Supreme Court, explaining:

“This claim has never been about money; it is about justice.”

Photo by Raymond Bryson via Flickr 

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  1. Paul says:

    Woman gets away with repugnant, morally and legally questionable behaviour due to her ability to give birth. Man picks up bill. AGAIN !! – its a bit of a reccuring theme this..

  2. Andrew says:

    Why the HELL have clinics ever allowed people to sign these forms without producing photo ID? It’s not rocket science.

  3. Michael Holmes says:

    If only there was a criminal offence of “obtaining goods or services by deception”, or come to think of it there is…. I can understand why Dad probably doesn’t want his daughter’s mother charged but following the judges comments I hope plod might think this worthy of investigation.

  4. Thomas Law says:

    Mum therefore has an automatic right to claim maintenance for the next 18 years.

    Never ever, give your DNA to a woman, Men. Unless it is your express intention to breed with them.

  5. Deborah says:

    Well when my boyfriend and i had IVF we were given photographic ID cards which we had to produce on the day our son was implanted and we both had to be there to consent The clinic really should have made them have ID.

  6. Andy says:

    Same old situation.Mother lies,and gets away with it. Father pays..it’s all about who is going to pay and she ain’t…course the fertility clinic are pleased with the outcome..no blame on them..This is where in today’s society and of course deception usually by Jr. Female in such behaviour that forgery of any nature is accepted by courts…As for the father how dare he forge anything..
    Same old situation…court supports the mother…

  7. Yvie says:

    I wonder how many men unknowingly have paid or are paying, 18 years of maintenance for a child who is not his. DNA testing on the birth of a child should be mandatory. Deception is not difficult and the financial cost for the person deceived can run into many thousands of pounds.

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