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Jahi McMath's legal case could impact state law. Here are similar cases involving brain death from around the country:

  • In 2004, Utah parents fought to keep their brain-dead 6-year-old son, Jesse Koochin, on a ventilator at his hospital after his bout with brain cancer. A judge ordered him released from his hospital to his parents' care; his heart stopped about three weeks later.

  • In 2006, 14-year-old Michael Todd, of Kansas, was declared brain dead at a Kansas hospital after being shot in the neck. His mother questioned that diagnosis, saying her son still made movements and responses to her; she received a restraining order. A settlement was reached between the family and hospital for an independent doctor to examine the boy. The brain-death diagnosis was confirmed and the family removed the ventilator.

  • In 2006, a Kansas family received a temporary injunction to keep 2-year-old Brett Shively Jr. on a ventilator after a drowning accident led doctors to declare him brain dead. The family would not consent to approve the final brain-death test, and a judge ruled that physicians must treat him as a live patient. The hospital agreed to release the boy to his family but appealed the judge's decision because it believed the ruling set a dangerous standard. An appellate court reversed the lower court's decision. It's unclear how long Brett remained on the ventilator.

  • In 2006, a family got a judge to grant a restraining order to keep a 72-year-old Buddhist man on his ventilator to allow his heart to eventually stop, per his religious beliefs. The family eventually relented.

  • In 2009, 22-year-old Christian Lanciano overdosed on heroin and was declared brain dead by a West Virginia hospital. Lanciano's mother sought and was granted a restraining order to prevent the hospital from removing her son's ventilator. She dropped her legal fight and allowed doctors to remove his ventilator once she was convinced of the diagnosis.