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Johnson v. Jamaica Hospital

New York Court of Appeals
467 N.E.2d 502 (1984)



The Johnsons (plaintiffs) delivered a baby girl at Jamaica Hospital (defendant). The Johnsons’ daughter was kept for observation, and the mother was discharged. When the mother returned to Jamaica Hospital one week later, it was discovered that their daughter had been abducted. More than four months later, their daughter was returned. In the meantime, the Johnsons had brought suit against Jamaica Hospital for negligent infliction of emotional distress stemming from their daughter’s abduction. The trial court denied the hospital’s motion to dismiss, finding that Jamaica Hospital owed a direct duty to the Johnsons, as parents, to properly care for their child, and that it was foreseeable that any injury to their child would result in emotional distress to the parents. The Appellate Division affirmed, but then certified a question about the correctness of its order to the New York Court of Appeals.

Rule of Law


Holding and Reasoning (Kaye, J.)

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