Consequenses of death? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 7 Old 03-17-2010, 12:41 PM - Thread Starter
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My SIL tells me that if your baby dies during an UC you will go to prison for homicide. any truth in that? I can't find anything anywhere on the web

Unassisted birthing, atheist, WOHM to 4 wonderful, smart homeschooling kids 17, 11, 6, 3
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#2 of 7 Old 03-17-2010, 01:41 PM
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anything is possible... it probably depends on where you are, if you had prenatal care, did your own prenantal care, or have no record of prenatal care, or if they have some other reason to think you killed your child on purpose.

However, it is most likely that, God forbid if something like that happened, you would just tell them that he came so fast you couldn't get to the hospital-it seems like a great number of people use that excuse to avoid getting yelled at by their HCP anyhow.

Plus, its not illegal to UC, so I don't even understand how you could get into legal trouble for UCing where it just happened that the baby died(especially since so many more babies die in the hospital each year than at home.)
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#3 of 7 Old 03-17-2010, 01:44 PM
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I'm interested in seeing educated answers on this.

I, personally, think that you SIL is trying to scare you. Babies die during childbirth, it just happens. Its no ones fault and no one goes to jail. I can see people trying to make a parents UC decision (and then loses a baby) look like negligence but thats just all matter of opinion. Birth IS a natural process why should it always be medicalized... is the other side of the argument. Anyone who faults a mother who loses her child during birth should go to jail themselves!

I could be wrong though...

A wife to A, unschoolen mom to C (7), T (3) & little A (9 months).
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#4 of 7 Old 03-17-2010, 02:06 PM
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I know people who have had their babies die in UC's and they did not go to jail at all, everyone was very sweet and caring to them.
Yes, laws can be interpreted in such a way that if people wanted to be jerks they could prosecute you for "not seeking medical care in an event that most people would" (that's the law in my state), but it's just not what usually happens. My advice, don't appear negligent. Show that you wanted the pregnancy; pictures of your belly, saved tests, e-mails showing your joys about it will all help to show that you wanted the baby. Tape your birth; if your baby's birth/death are recorded on video you have proof that you acted as fast as you could and they can see that you are not hiding wrongdoing (which is what the issue would be anyway). Also it's a good idea to have some printed information about why you choose UC to show that it is a valid, well thought, CHOICE that you made for your baby's best interest.

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#5 of 7 Old 03-17-2010, 03:02 PM
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I am not a lawyer. Important to keep that in mind.

I have heard of cases of parents being investigated after an infant dies (during or after birth). I cannot recall ever having heard of a mother being sent to jail for homicide because her baby died being born or soon after. And I can remember cases where women gave birth and abandoned their babies in dumpsters.

I would, however, caution you that videotaping the birth might not be the best move to protect yourself in the event of an investigation. In the US, the criminal justice system places the burden of proof on the accuser. It's not up to the accused to prove that there was no wrongdoing, it's up to the state to prove that there *was*. If there's no tape, there's no evidence, but if the birth is captured on video, the district attorney's office can go through it frame by frame and question everything. The DA may have different opinions than you do concerning when you should have known things, what you should have done, and how fast it should have been possible to act. The location and perspective of the person with the camera can lead to misrepresentation of your experience. And in the event of an emergency, you're going to conscript every pair of hands to act, including the set that's holding the camcorder.

Birth videos can be a lovely memento, but don't look to them as protection from legal action.
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#6 of 7 Old 03-17-2010, 08:19 PM
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also not a lawyer.

anecdotally, the most i have seen happen is that the local police department investigates the birth to see if there is any foul play involved. most of the time, they report that it was simply a natural birth, and a natural death. in some of these cases, the baby may be autopsied.

but, this situation is rare and usually occurs because of something else going on. for example, the infant was found in a shallow grave or a history of abuse or violence in the family--any situation where the police might be involved 'before' the UC occurred.

the law can be tricky, but UC is not illegal in any state.

we became familiar with a family lawyer prior to our son's birth so that we would have legal protection if we needed it. we kept a record of the pregnancy, the celebrations of it, etc, even though i had no prenatal care (i did get prenatal massage each week). our doctor and our lawyer knew of our plans, and so we felt that we would be adequately protected in case of any event (even a perfect birth where someone decided to call CPS or whatever).
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#7 of 7 Old 03-18-2010, 03:58 PM
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our UC was stillborn. nothing happened except a huge city wide luncheon. County attorney had to sign the death certificate since do dr was here...

wife since 1992; mom to: J 7-95; H 5-98; C 2-03; S 4-05; Micah Zachary born still UC 4-08; UM 9-08; due June 2010
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