Monday 22 January 2018

French clinic to pay out €400,000 each to two women (20) who were accidentally switched at birth

A French court has ordered a private clinic in Cannes to pay out 400,000 euros (£300,000) each to two 20-year-old girls who were accidentally switched at birth and given to the wrong parents.

It is part of a 1.88 million euro (£1.4 million) payment to members of the two families.

The clinic's lawyer, Sophie Chas, said she was not certain whether an appeal would be lodged against the decision by the court in Grasse.

Ms Chas said the court ordered payments of 300,000 euros (£223,000) for each of three parents involved in the case and 60,000 euros (£45,000) for three brothers and sisters.

The court ordered payments by the Clinica Jourdan and an insurance company after a nurse's assistant at the clinic accidentally gave baby Manon Serrano, who was in an incubator, to another mother after her birth in July 1994, and gave the baby next to her to Sophie Serrano.

The other family involved in the case has chosen to remain anonymous.

Three years later, Manon's hair grew curly and her skin olive-toned - unlike either parent. Her father separated from Ms Serrano after village rumours spread about the young girl being "the postman's daughter".

In 2004, DNA tests showed Manon was the daughter of neither of them. An investigation was launched and their biological child was located less than 20 miles away.

"I am perfectly satisfied (with the ruling) because responsibility within the medical chain was acknowledged," the lawyer for the victims, Gilbert Collard, said. The families had sought a total of 12 million euros (£9 million), but had little hope of obtaining that amount, he said.

Ms Serrano, who raised Manon, expressed relief that the error had at last been acknowledged.

"It's a relief. We have waited for this for so long," she said.

The suit brought in 2010 by the two families also targeted two doctors and the nurse's assistant who made the switch, but the court did not convict them.

Press Association

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