Transcript for NJ Judge Lets Moms Ban Dads From Delivery Room
We move on to that the legal fight over fathers in the delivery room. A New Jersey judge banned one dad from the delivery room because the mom did not want him there. A controversial ruling and ABC's Reena ninan has the story. Reporter: Dads in delivery rooms, a pretty common fixture these days seen in the movie "Knocked up." Give her the epidural. Reporter: Now a nuj judge ruled expectant moms have the legal right to keep dads out. Laura's client estranged from his baby girl's mother didn't want to miss his daughter's first moment. He went to court. His main concern was seeing his daughter when she was born and being able to bond with her. Reporter: The judge went one step further ruling in favor of the mom's right to privacy in the delivery room. Noting the mom is not required to tell the father she's going into labor, not required to allow him into the delivery room. In this case clearly applies to unmarried couples. How it extends to married couples, I don't know. Reporter: For "Good morning America," Reena ninan, ABC news, New York. Okay, we wanted you to weigh in. We a flash poll whether moms should be allowed to ban dads from the delivery room? Here are the results. 55% say yes and 45% say no. Let's get some perspective. Dan Abrams back. Our chief legal affairs anchor along with Dr. Jennifer Ashton. The legal side. Banning them from the delivery room is the easy call here. It's her call as to what she wants to do in the delivery room. The harder -- Even if they're married. Even if they were married I think you could make an argument. You could be totally estranged and not in the best interest of the child to have a problem in the delivery room. So that seems to me to be the easier call. The tougher call and the reason I was troubled by this decision is the judge didn't seem to need to get that child into the hands of the dad quickly. Meaning he's basically say, yes, he'll be able to visit at the hospital, et cetera, with a dad who wants to be part of the process who's saying I want to know when the labor is, I want to be there, I think the judge should have created the situation the minute that child is born dad is going to have a right to bond with that child, to be with the child and I think there's an argument to be made dad should have been informed -- there should have been an effort to say she should use any reasonable means to inform the father that she's have the baby so I think the judge here went a little too far and also I think extended some of the constitutional principles into a case that's really just a family law case. Let's get Dr. Jennifer Ashton's take. Doc, what do you think? Most stories have medical and legal angles and, boy, this one is definitely a doozy. In this country, we tend to deliver babies in a medical environment. So my perspective here is purely medical. The concern is the pregnant woman and her fetus, those are my two patients and my concern will always be first and foremost about their safety and I've definitely been involved in deliveries where the dad's behavior has compromised patient care. Either they faint or they make a scene and then it takes the eyes off of two patients. It happens. Good point. I don't think we want to ban dads for fainting. Good point. Thank you both. All right, guys. Yeah, it's a good point.
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