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Second wrongful death of a minor suit filed over frozen embryo destruction after IVF ruling

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Second wrongful death of a minor suit filed over frozen embryo destruction after IVF ruling

Mar 01, 2024 | 6:45 pm ET
By Jemma Stephenson
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Second wrongful death of a minor suit filed over frozen embryo destruction after IVF ruling
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Embryologist Ric Ross holds a dish with human embryos at the La Jolla IVF Clinic February 28, 2007 in La Jolla, California. The University of Alabama Bimringham Wednesday said it was stopping IVF treatments after the Alabama Supreme Court ruled that frozen embryos were children. (Sandy Huffaker/Getty Images)

A new lawsuit seeking damages for the destruction of frozen embryos was filed against a Mobile fertility clinic on Thursday. 

The lawsuit came about two weeks after the Alabama Supreme Court ruled that frozen embryos destroyed at the Center for Reproductive Medicine in Mobile in 2020 were children, and that parents could sue for civil damages under an 1872 state law. The decision led to the suspension of many IVF programs in the state.

The lawsuit, brought on behalf of a Florida couple who had been patients at the clinic, states that the patient at Mobile Infirmary Center entered the area where frozen embryos were stored and destroyed several destroyed three of the couple’s stored embryos.

The lawsuit seeks costs and punitive damages “for Defendants’ negligent conduct that lead to the wrongful deaths of Plaintiffs’ three embryonic children.”

The Alabama House and Senate on Thursday passed separate bills extending criminal and civil immunity to IVF practitioners for IVF treatments. A portion of the bill that says it would apply retroactively was removed in the legislative process.

The law firm representing the plaintiffs, Cunningham Bounds, also represented the plaintiffs in the Alabama Supreme Court Case.

Messages were left with Cunningham Bounds and Mobile Infirmary Friday afternoon. A message was left late on Friday with Center for Reproductive Medicine was available to comment until the next business day (Monday) but a message was left.