A recent lawsuit filed in the Eastern District of New York describes a nightmare scenario for any couple undergoing fertility treatment. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that between one to two percent of all U.S. births per year are achieved through IVF, amounting to between 40,000 and 80,000 children. With increasing technological advances, IVF has become a far more common practice than in the past. IVF can be complex and there is much room for error, but one New York couple experienced the unbelievable. Our New York City medical malpractice attorneys discuss this newly filed case below.
A.P. and Y.Z. v. CHA Fertility Center
The plaintiffs, referred to as A.P. and Y.Z. in the complaint, married in 2012. The couple desired to have their own child but were unable to conceive naturally. They learned of CHA Fertility, a Los Angeles based IVF clinic with a strong reputation worldwide. The couple elected to travel to the clinic in January of 2018 where they underwent IVF treatment, paying over $100,000 for the procedure and travel costs.
The procedure resulted in five frozen embryos, of which one female embryo was transferred to the wife in February. This first transfer failed, so a second was attempted with two female embryos. She became pregnant. During the pregnancy, the couple was told the twins were two boys, which was thought to be strange given that the embryos were said to be female. Later, the couple gave birth to the two male twins and discovered they were a different ethnicity than either spouse. DNA results confirmed the twins were not related to either parent nor were they related to each other.
Plaintiffs were required to turn over custody of the twins. They have now sued the clinic for medical malpractice, along with negligence, intentional infliction of emotional distress, breach of contract, and more.
This medical malpractice lawsuit is sure to gather much attention given the bizarre set of facts it involves. It is likely the New York couple will pursue compensation for their substantial medical expenses, travel costs, time off work for treatment and pregnancy expenses incurred, along with sizable emotional pain and suffering costs and costs to cover additional fertility treatments to ultimately still achieve a pregnancy with their own children.