The birth of children is often a time filled with excitement, anticipation, and anxiety. Parents are eager to meet their child, but understandably concerned about labor and birth. One of the concerns is that the baby will be born with a brain injury. Occasionally, a brain injury is a nevitable, but tragic, consequence of birth. However, many times a baby brain injury could have been prevented and the injury occurs because a doctor, nurse or hospital is medically negligent.
While parents regret the life their child will lead because of the medical malpractice that caused the brain injury, they must also be prepared to face the reality of the child future. Your child lifetime care and expenses may be of such magnitude that the family will not be able to cover them and will want to hold accountable the people who caused the injuries and prevent other children from being harmed in the future.
In most jurisdictions, the parent of a child who suffers brain injuries during birth has the ability to sue on behalf of the child. Every jurisdiction has a time limit order and the lawsuit must be filed with the court before the expiration of the time limit. Therefore, it is important to seek the advice of an experienced medical malpractice attorney as soon as possible after you learn of your child injuries.
In order to recover damages in a medical malpractice lawsuit, a plaintiff must be able to prove that:
- The defendant had a duty to care for the child . A doctor, nurse, midwife, hospital, or birthing center has a duty to care for your child when using their services for your child;
- Defendant failed in duty of care . A defendant fails in his duty to care for the child if he fails to act as a reasonable person would have done in those circumstances. For example, if a reasonable obstetrician had performed a cesarean section and his doctor would not have done so without a medical reason for omitting it, then the obstetrician may have failed in his duty to care for his child;
- The defendant failure to care for the child was the cause of the injuries to the child: The injuries to your child must have occurred because of the defendant actions (or omissions). In other words, your child would not have suffered the brain injury as it occurred because of the defendant actions; and
- Plaintiff is entitled to payment of damages in accordance with state law : If he succeeds in demonstrating the above three elements of medical malpractice, then he will be entitled to payment of damages in accordance with state law.
Possible damages in a lawsuit for a child brain injury include compensation for past and future medical bills, pain and suffering, rehabilitation costs, projected living expenses for the child who is unlikely to be able to support himself or herself in maturity due to the injuries and loss of income if a parent is unable to work due to the demand for care involved in caring for a brain-injured child. In some cases, courts may also award punitive damages against the defendant.
Brain injuries at the birth of a child forever change the life of a family. While the damages cannot be repaired, the damages caused will not give the child the opportunities he or she might have had had had he or she not been injured, the payment of financial damages can give the family the resources to provide the child with the necessary care and hold the defendant responsible for the medical malpractice.
Talk to a Qualified Birth Injury Attorney Today
This article is intended to be useful and informative. But legal issues can become complicated and stressful. A qualified birth injury attorney can attend to your particular legal needs, explain the law and represent you in court. Take the first step now and contact a qualified birth injury lawyer near you to discuss your specific legal situation.