CALL (800) 863-5312 for a free consultation with a birth injury lawyer who specializes in brachial palsy cases
Having a child can be one of the most exciting times of your life. While giving birth is a magical experience for some, for others it may be scary and painful. If something goes wrong during labor or delivery, you may be left scared and worrying about the long-term health and development of your child.
If your child or a loved one has suffered from a birth injury due to the negligence of a doctor, nurse, or other healthcare provider in the delivery room, call Zinda Law Group at (800) 863-5312 for a free consultation with a birth injury lawyer. One of our experienced brachial palsy attorneys can evaluate your case and help you seek maximum compensation for your injuries.
Birth injury FAQs
If you or your child was injured during childbirth, you may be wondering how that will affect your baby’s future, or whether you can sue. Contact a medical malpractice lawyer who can answer questions about your specific case and whether it would be worth your time to seek compensation.
How Common Are Birth Injuries?
Birth injury refers to any kind of injury that occurs to your child in the course of labor and delivery; unfortunately, most birth injuries are preventable, caused by medical malpractice. In the United States, for every 1,000 children born, about 7 birth injuries occur. Birth injuries are most common when:
- The baby is large.
- The baby is born prematurely.
- The baby is not headfirst in the birth canal.
- Labor is difficult or very long.
- The mother is very overweight.
- Devices, such as vacuums, are used to help deliver the baby.
During delivery, your child is at risk of multiple kinds of injuries. Common birth injuries include:
- Swelling or bruising of the head
- Bleeding underneath the skull
- Breakage of blood vessels in the baby’s eyes
- Facial nerve injury
- Fracture of the collarbone
- Brachial palsy
What is Brachial Palsy?
Brachial palsy is an injury that your newborn child can receive during the birthing process. This type of injury most commonly occurs when, during birth, the child’s shoulders get trapped inside the mother’s pelvis. To free the child’s shoulder’s, a doctor will tilt the baby’s head, resulting in a stretching of their shoulders and of the brachial plexus nerves.
The brachial plexus nerves are those which provide movement and feeling to your arms and hands. Common signs of brachial palsy include:
- Affected arm not moving normally
- Arm muscles getting smaller
- Limited feeling in the affected arm
For example, if your child cannot feel temperature or pain on one of their arms, this may be a sign that they have brachial palsy. As a result of brachial palsy, your child may also suffer from broken arm bones or have eye problems. If you suspect your child has brachial palsy, you should see a doctor as soon as possible so that they can properly treat your child.
What Are Birth Injury Side Effects?
During the three stages of labor, your child is at risk of many kinds of injuries. Immediately after birth, you should monitor your child and look for common side effects to determine whether they may have suffered a birth injury. Common side effects to look for include:
- Arched back while crying
- Difficulty swallowing or eating
- Excessive drooling
- Hand curled into a claw-like shape
- Excessive fussiness
- Muscle stiffness
- Sensitivity to light
- Weak or absent reflexes
If you notice your child exhibiting any of these side effects, contact a doctor immediately and schedule an appointment. They must be able to physically examine your child in person to determine whether your child suffered a birth injury.
What Are My Rights After Birth Injury?
If your child suffered a birth injury, you may be wondering, can I sue for a birth injury? Contact a medical malpractice lawyer who can evaluate your case and determine whether you can file a lawsuit to hold the proper parties responsible for your child’s injuries. A medical malpractice attorney can also help you determine what kind of compensation you may be able to seek.
How Do I Bring a Birth Injury Lawsuit?
It is best to contact a brachial palsy attorney or a personal injury lawyer who specializes in medical malpractice cases to help you build a strong case against those responsible for your child’s birth injuries. A birth injury lawsuit is a kind of medical malpractice lawsuit. This means that to succeed on a birth injury claim, your medical malpractice lawyer will have to prove the doctor owed the mother a duty and breached that duty, and that the doctor’s breach caused damages to the patient.
Doctors owe their patients a duty to follow generally accepted professional standards. In the medical profession, these standards are based on scientific evidence published in medical literature and recognized by the medical community. Contact a birth injury lawyer to help you determine whether your doctor followed acceptable standards for labor and delivery.
bringing a birth injury lawsuit
Multiple steps must be taken when filing a birth injury lawsuit. First, you will want to document the injury and contact a medical malpractice lawyer near you as soon as possible so that you can begin to seek compensation for your child’s injury.
Document the Injury
If you choose to bring a lawsuit, it will be helpful to your brachial palsy attorney or other personal injury attorney if you have documented the incident. So, document the injury and the circumstances surrounding it as soon as you are able to. While recalling the experience may be painful or even traumatic, detailed documentation can help a brachial palsy attorney build your case and seek compensation for your child.
You can document the injury through photos or videos, or by writing things down on paper or in your cell phone. For example, you will want to document:
- Any side effects your child is experiencing
- What happened while you were giving birth
- Details about any follow-up doctor’s appointments your child has had
- Any and all instructions your doctor has given you
Documenting everything you can remember about the birth and injury of your baby can help a birth injury lawyer better understand your case.
Statute of Limitations
You only have a limited amount of time to file a lawsuit against the person who injured your child, causing them to suffer from brachial palsy; the clock starts ticking beginning from the time of the incident. The statute of limitations for birth injury cases depends on the state you are in; most states have a 2- or 3-year statute of limitations, but some allow a case to brought up to 10 years after the incident.
For most states, the statute of limitations begins to run once the child is born. This means that in a 2-year statute of limitations state, you will only be able to file a lawsuit up until the time your child is two years old. To determine the statute of limitations for your state and when it begins to run, contact a medical malpractice attorney; a qualified medical malpractice attorney will be able to evaluate your claim and determine whether it can be brought within the time frame set by the statute of limitations in your state.
Filing the Complaint
If your medical malpractice lawyer determines your claim falls within your state’s statute of limitations, they will begin gathering evidence to file the complaint. The complaint is the document that starts the lawsuit. In the complaint, your birth injury lawyer will detail what happened and what compensation you are seeking for yours or your child’s injuries.
It is important to tell your medical malpractice attorney about all parties involved in the birth of your child. Your medical malpractice lawyer may be able to name them all as defendants in your case. This means that you will be seeking compensation from more people than just the delivery doctor—perhaps even the nurses who attended your child’s delivery or even the hospital where you gave birth.
You can seek two kinds of compensation, or damages, in a birth injury lawsuit: compensatory and punitive damages; compensatory damages are damages to reimburse you for any economic or noneconomic losses. Economic damages include those that can be calculated; these include lost past or future earnings, medical expenses, or other monetary amounts. Noneconomic damages are those that aim at reimbursing you for emotional damages, such as pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment of life, or emotional distress.
Punitive damages are damages that aim at punishing those responsible for your injuries. A jury will award punitive damages to teach a defendant a lesson; in birth injury cases, punitive damages serve as warnings to other doctors or nurses to not act in the same manner as the defendant did. Your birth injury lawyer can help you gather the evidence you need to seek maximum compensation.
Zinda law group can help you
At Zinda Law Group, we understand that birth injuries are scary for both you and your child. Our experienced birth injury lawyers have the resources necessary to help you build a case and seek maximum compensation for your and your child’s injuries.
At Zinda Law Group, we believe that no medical malpractice victim should have to pay further out of pocket expenses to seek compensation for their injuries. That is why we offer a “No Win, No Fee Guarantee,” so that you do not have to pay anything unless we receive a favorable verdict, judgment, or settlement in your case. If your child or a loved one has suffered a birth injury, call Zinda Law Group at (800) 863-5312 for a 100% free consultation with a medical malpractice attorney near you.
Meetings with attorneys are available by appointment only.