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Published on January 3, 2023

How to Handle a Birth Injury Lawsuit (A Comprehensive Guide to Your Legal Rights)

Birth injury lawsuits are among the most distressing types of cases. Birth injuries can lead to the loss of a loved one or permanent life-long conditions. It is important to consult with a professional who can help you through this difficult time. 

This is a complete guide to your legal rights in the case of a birth injury and how a birth injury attorney can help you seek compensation. Read on to learn more. 

What Is a Birth Injury?

A birth injury is any physical injury that occurs during childbirth. The injury may afflict the child or mother. Birth injuries can range from small injuries like a bruise to fatal injuries. Some birth injuries also lead to permanent conditions that individuals deal with for the rest of their lives.

Types of Birth Injuries

Below are some of the most common types of birth injuries. The injuries listed below are some of the most severe birth injuries and the ones that frequently lead to lawsuits.

  • Brachial Plexus Injury
  • Cerebral Palsy 
  • Hypoxic Ischemic Encephalopathy
  • Caput Succedaneum
  • Subconjunctival Hemorrhage
  • Spinal Cord Injuries
  • Cephalohematoma
  • Bone Fractures

Types of Birth Injury Lawsuits

Not all birth injury lawsuits are the same, so it helps to know the different types.

Medical Negligence

The first type of birth injury lawsuit involving malpractice is medical negligence. Medical negligence is when healthcare professionals fail to follow adequate medical care standards, leading to injury or death. Medical negligence applies if the doctors and nurses did not act with the correct level of caution, consideration, and judgment during a birth. 

Medical Errors

Medical errors are a lower level of medical malpractice. A medical error does not necessarily entail negligence and can occur when a skilled and knowledgeable doctor makes an understandable but avoidable error. 

Usually, medical experts determine the appropriate standard of care, so the line between an error and negligence is thin. A lawyer can help you determine the type of birth injury lawsuit applicable to your situation.

Wrongful Death

Wrongful death can apply to a stillbirth or post-birth death that proper care could have prevented. This type of lawsuit requires the plaintiffs to show that a healthcare professional’s mistake directly caused the death of the infant or mother.

Statute of Limitations on Birth Injury Cases

The statute of limitations concerning birth injuries varies by state. In most states, the statute of limitations is two to three years for the parents. If the child wishes to file a lawsuit, the statute of limitations begins on their 18th birthday.

The Birth Injury Lawsuit Process

Below is a brief overview of the steps you should take in a birth injury lawsuit.

1. Hire a Lawyer

Before you do anything, you must hire an experienced birth injury attorney. Navigating a birth injury lawsuit alone is challenging, so it’s wise to hire a reputable attorney to guide you through the process.

2. Collect Evidence

The next step is to gather evidence and begin an investigation. Your lawyer will do most of the legwork for this, but you can provide important and relevant medical records, hospital notes, and witness statements.

The investigation will begin after you hire a birth injury attorney and will continue until a settlement is reached or the case goes to trial. Once you file the lawsuit and begin communications with the other party, the discovery process begins.

3. Settlement or Trial

Once you and your lawyer gather substantial evidence and build a decent case, your lawyer will contact the defendant, notifying them of the demands concerning malpractice.

They may respond with a counteroffer or agree to pay the requested settlement. Most birth injury lawsuits settle out of court. But if they refuse to pay, the case will go to a judge.

Birth Injury Lawsuit Compensation

If you or a loved one are a victim of a wrongful birth injury, you deserve compensation from the guilty parties. With this guide and help from a birth injury attorney, you can begin seeking compensation for a tragic incident.

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