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June 06, 2005

Supreme Court says foetuses have rights

The Supreme Court of Appeal has handed down a landmark ruling that will allow parents for the first time to claim compensation from the Road Accident Fund for their unborn babies hurt in car accidents. The court, reports The Mercury, made this ruling late last week as Judge Ian Farlam dismissed fears it was bound to open the floodgates on litigation. The case was brought by Mxolisi Richard Mtati on behalf of his baby daughter, Zukhanye. He claimed R1.3m from the Road Accident Fund, saying that an accident on December 20 1989 caused his daughter to be born brain damaged. The Road Accident Fund refused to pay. It said a foetus did not qualify under law to be ‘a person’. In his judgment, Judge Farlam said it ‘would be intolerable if our law did not grant such an action’.
Full report in The Mercury not available online


Supplied courtesy of Legalbrief Today.


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