Chapter

The Legal Status of the Fetus

John Seymour

in Childbirth and the Law

Published in print July 2000 | ISBN: 9780198264682
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191682759 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198264682.003.0008
The Legal Status of the Fetus

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This chapter examines some assumptions underlying the law’s attempts to deal with claims advanced on behalf of the fetus. The purpose is to determine how the lawmakers view the fetus and whether it is recognized as a distinctive entity with interests deserving protection. As seen in earlier chapters, the interests of fetuses have been scrutinized in the context of criminal, child protection, and negligence proceedings, as well as in actions taken to impose medical treatment on unwilling women. The lesson to be learned from a re-examination of these proceedings is the principal subject of the chapter.

Keywords: fetus; law; lawmakers; child protection; protection

Chapter.  28265 words. 

Subjects: Medical and Healthcare Law

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