Filing a Cerebral Palsy Lawsuit

Ava Lawson | April 30th, 2013 | Posted in Cerebral Palsy Lawsuit News

Courthose Thumbnail 5Cerebral palsy can be caused by a medical professional’s mistakes or negligence during delivery. An obstetrician or member of the delivery team may fail to recognize and respond to symptoms of fetal distress, leading to asphyxia of the fetal brain. If you believe that your child was diagnosed with cerebral palsy due to hospital malpractice, you may be entitled to compensation for the damages incurred. In far too many cases, birth injuries are a direct consequence of medical errors, either before, during, or immediately following the delivery. A birth injury lawyer can evaluate the facts and circumstances surrounding your case to determine if you qualify for a cerebral palsy lawsuit.

Some children with cerebral palsy (CP) may not show signs of the movement disorder for several months or years. The brain damage associated with CP may contribute to a host of other health complications including cognitive delays, vision and hearing loss and speech problems.  Though the condition is non-progressive, there is no cure for cerebral palsy, and the medical expenses for lifelong treatment can be astronomical – upwards of 1 million dollars in the course of a child’s lifetime.

Do I need a medical malpractice lawyer?

Since a cerebral palsy lawsuit is often complex, it’s recommended to contact a birth injury lawyer who is experienced in medical malpractice claims. Your lawyer will thoroughly analyze your case, interview witnesses, review medical records and protect your child’s legal rights by establishing a strong case, when the causes of cerebral palsy include birth injury malpractice. Your legal team will compile evidence to support a lawsuit and request prenatal and delivery room records from attending physicians, as well as fetal monitoring strips that may show signs of fetal distress.

Is there a time limit for filing a lawsuit?

All medical malpractice claims are governed by time constraints for taking legal action. Known as the “statute of limitations,” this time frame varies from state to state. Once this statute expires, a person gives up their rights to sue for damages, though exceptions may exist. For birth injuries such as cerebral palsy, the following stipulations may apply:

  • In certain states minors may have the right to file a cerebral palsy lawsuit after their 18th birthday (usually no more than 2 years later)
  • Parents may file suit on behalf of their child before his or her 18th birthday 

Your lawyer can detail the legal restrictions on filing a malpractice lawsuit in your state.

What types of damages can be recovered?

When pursuing legal recourse, remember that cerebral palsy is a lifelong condition that often requires a concerted effort of medical specialists ranging from orthopedic surgeons to occupational therapists. Successful litigation can result in compensation for past and future medical bills, reduced earning capacity, lost wages, out-of-pocket expenses, emotional trauma, pain and suffering, and other losses.

Do I have a strong case?

To recover damages through a settlement or jury award your case must prove liability on the part of medical professionals. You must show that the defendant had a legal responsibility to care for you and your child and that their negligence caused your child’s cerebral palsy. Your birth injury lawyer will enlist expert witness testimony from specialists in the medical field in order to strengthen your case and ensure the best possible outcome.

How long does it take for the lawsuit to resolve?

In the majority of cases, most medical malpractice claims settle out of court before going to trial. In the event that your cerebral palsy lawsuit does go before a jury, it may take several months or years before resolution takes place.

Learn more about your legal options

For more information about filing a cerebral palsy lawsuit, contact the law offices of Balkin & Eisbrouch today for your free consultation. We’ll explain your legal entitlements and determine your best options for recovering the compensation you need and deserve for your child’s birth injuries.