A birth injury can be difficult to move past, particularly when the long-term consequences of the injury will remain for the rest of the child’s life. In the wake of such trauma, you may wonder if there is anything you can do to seek justice.Filing a birth injury claim may be one way to do so. Below, we discuss what you must demonstrate in a birth injury claim.
What’s Considered a Birth Injury?
First, we must discuss the difference between a birth injury and a birth defect. A birth injury is harm that occurs to the baby during or after birth. This harm can involve physical damage or oxygen deprivation, and each type of harm often results from a doctor’s error. In most cases, birth injuries are preventable.
Birth defects, on the other hand, are not preventable. They form while the baby is in the mother’s womb and often result from genetic factors.
Therefore, since a birth injury is largely preventable, you may be able to file a claim against the negligent doctor (and the hospital that employs them) to recover compensation for your child’s medical treatment and other damages.
How to File a Birth Injury Claim
If you suspect your child sustained a birth injury during the labor and delivery process, it’s important to contact a qualified attorney as soon as possible. This is because collecting evidence regarding your claim is key to its success, and you need the experience of a seasoned legal professional in order to obtain all related evidence.
It can be tricky to work with hospitals that want to protect their staff and their reputation, and in so doing, make it difficult to find all the related evidence. You need a law firm that specializes in birth injury cases to analyze whether or not your doctor and the hospital followed the accepted standard of care and gave you all the necessary information and advice during the birth.
Once you have contacted an experienced firm, they will likely take the matter largely out of your hands. At this point, your attorneys will work to demonstrate the following key elements:
- A doctor-patient relationship existed.
- The doctor owed you a duty of care.
- The doctor breached that duty of care.
- The doctor’s actions caused the baby’s injuries, either directly or indirectly.
- You and/or the baby suffered damages.
Most birth injury claims settle out of court so the hospital can avoid a publicized trial and damage to its reputation. During the negotiation phase, your attorneys may attempt to recover the following damages for you and your child:
- Medical expenses
- Economic loss
- Non-economic damage (e.g., pain and suffering) due to the baby’s injuries
These damages may be recovered by you as the parent and/or by the baby as the injured party.
Suffered a Birth Injury? Contact Us Today
If you or your child suffered a birth injury during the labor and delivery process like cerebral palsy, Brown & Barron, LLC is here to help. We have significant experience negotiating with large hospitals and their insurers, and this experience may mean the difference between your claim’s success or failure. We encourage you to contact us today to learn about your legal options.