PUTRAJAYA: A paraplegic was awarded RM70,000 in damages by the Court of Appeal for him and his wife to go through vitro fertilisation treatment (IVF) to conceive a child following an accident.
This is believed to be the first time the Court of Appeal had recognised damages for IVF treatment.
A three-member panel chaired by Justice Datuk Mohd Zawawi Salleh said it was the fundamental right of unemployed S. Nares and his wife M.N. Suguna, a clerk, to have children.
The panel, which also comprised Justices Datuk Ahmadi Asnawi and Vernon Ong Lam Kiat, allowed Nares' appeal to overturn an earlier High Court decision to set aside the special damages for IVF treatment.
Justice Mohd Zawawi also held driver Goh May Fat and car owner Chew Kit Meng 80% and Nares 20% liable for the accident besides maintaining general and other special damages earlier awarded to Nares by the Sessions Court.
Nares, 27, a former Rela member, had sued Goh and Chew for negligence through his wife Suguna, 26.
In his suit, he had claimed that without indicating, Goh suddenly made a U-turn and encroached onto his side of the road, thus colliding with him near Jalan Kampung Jawa, Klang, on April 10, 2010.
Nares, who had only been married for two weeks before the incident, claimed that due to the accident, he sustained disabilities and incurred expenses and loss of income.
In their statement of defence, both Goh and Chew denied responsibility, claiming that the accident was fully or mostly caused by Nares' negligence.
On July 31, 2013, the Sessions Court in Klang had awarded Nares some RM2.04mil in damages for, among others, injuries, nursing care, loss of earnings, medical expenses and a sum of RM120,000 for long-term treatment for erectile dysfunction and IVF procedure for the couple who planned to have three children.
However, the Shah Alam High Court had on Aug 22 last year reduced Goh and Chew?s liability to 50% and made a contributory negligence of 50% on Nares's part.
It also reduced the quantum of damages to about RM1mil. Nares then appealed to the Court of Appeal.
His counsel, G.K. Ganesan, said it was his opinion that this was the first time that the Court of Appeal had recognised damages for IVF treatment. ? Bernama