Birth injuries like cerebral palsy, brachial plexus injuries, and other conditions can arise when medical professionals fail to meet the proper standard of care. The effects of these injuries stay with the child for a lifetime, requiring extensive medical treatment and therapy that may not be covered by insurance.
Families experience great financial and emotional strain caring for an injured child. In some cases, birth injuries are preventable with proper prenatal and delivery care but parents have a right to hold negligent parties accountable. However, navigating the complex legal system is difficult without guidance.
An experienced birth injury lawyer understands medical issues and legal processes and can build a strong case to recover damages and justice. They know how to investigate events and prove negligence. Legal counsel lends emotional support and protects families from insurance tactics. While no amount of money can erase a child’s diagnosis, sufficient compensation allows parents to access the best care and therapy. With the right legal team, families gain the means to provide their children with the brightest future possible.
6 Commonly Asked Questions about Birth Injuries Legal Aid
1. When should I contact a birth injury lawyer?
If your child suffered an injury during birth that has resulted in a diagnosis like cerebral palsy, brachial plexus injury, or other conditions, it is important to contact a birth injury attorney right away. Many parents often wonder, can you sue a doctor for cerebral palsy? The answer is yes, if it is believed that the doctor’s negligence led to the condition. However, do not delay seeking legal counsel even as you focus on your child’s immediate medical needs. The sooner an experienced lawyer can start investigating the circumstances surrounding the birth and building a case, the better.
Evidence like medical records can start disappearing soon after an incident, so quick action is key. The first few weeks and months are a critical window for gathering information, interviewing witnesses, and requesting documents before they are lost or destroyed. Your lawyer needs time to build the strongest argument to prove negligence and win compensation.
Most birth injury lawyers understand this is an extremely difficult time for parents and provide free initial consultations. This gives you the opportunity to discuss your situation, learn your legal options, and decide if you want to move forward with that firm. During the consultation, find out about the lawyer’s experience with similar cases, the overall record of success, and what they would need from you to start investigating right away. The sooner you contact them after your child’s diagnosis, the faster they can start building your case.
2. What qualities should I look for in a birth injury lawyer?
Not all attorneys have the right skills and experience to handle birth injury cases successfully. When researching lawyers, look for the following credentials:
- Extensive specific experience with birth injury litigation: Ask how many similar cases they have handled and what results they achieved. Look for numerous seven-figure verdicts and settlements.
- Access to respected medical experts: The top birth injury firms work with doctors and nurses who can evaluate what went wrong and strengthen your case.
- A proven track record of success: High settlement amounts and favorable verdicts are a must.
- Strong reputation among past clients: Look for positive testimonials.
- Compassionate bedside manner: You need an attorney who shows empathy and dedication to your child.
- Resources to take cases to trial: Most settle, but you want a lawyer willing to go to court if needed.
The right birth injury attorney has the litigation experience and medical knowledge to prove negligence, calculate lifetime care costs, and fight for maximum compensation for your child. Do your research to find the best legal partner.
3. Will filing a birth injury claim affect my child’s insurance coverage?
Filing a lawsuit related to your child’s birth injury should not impact their insurance coverage. Medical expenses and care will still be handled through your health insurance as usual. Compensation from a birth injury settlement is meant to cover costs and losses beyond what insurance provides.
You should ask your birth injury attorney to confirm that filing a claim won’t impact your child’s insurance. They’ll review your policy and ensure your coverage stays intact. Some parents fear that settlements or awards will lead to insurance problems, but your lawyer can reassure you it won’t.
4. How long does a birth injury case take to resolve?
Every birth injury case is unique, so there is no set timeline. However, the overall process typically takes between 12-24 months or longer from start to finish. Here is a general overview of the phases:
- Investigation Phase (2-4 months) – Your lawyer gathers medical records, secures evidence and consults experts.
- Negotiation Phase (4-8 months) – Your lawyer attempts to settle with the insurer or hospital’s risk management team.
- Litigation Phase (6-12+ months) – If no settlement is reached, your case goes to trial before a judge or jury.
- Resolution – Either a settlement is negotiated or a verdict is awarded at trial.
Your attorney will guide you through every step and keep you updated on your progress. Be patient, as they need time to build the strongest case possible. In the end, most birth injury claims are settled before trial.
5. What information should I gather for my birth injury lawyer?
To build the strongest case for you, your birth injury attorney will need the following:
- Prenatal and delivery medical records: These provide insight into the care you received and any red flags.
- Pediatric records after birth: These diagnose your child’s condition and document early impacts.
- Receipts for medical expenses, equipment, therapies, etc.
- Documentation of lost wages or income.
- A written narrative of your recollection of what happened before, during, and after delivery. Be as detailed as possible.
- Any conversations with doctors or nurses related to your case.
Comprehensive medical documentation and cost records enable your lawyer to prove damages. Your personal account helps establish what happened and pinpoint negligence. Gathering this information early accelerates your case.
6. Will my child have to testify or be examined for a birth injury case?
Your birth injury lawyer will do everything possible to limit emotional stress on your family and protect your child’s privacy. In many cases, a settlement is reached before trial, so your child never needs to be involved. If your case does go to trial, expert testimony is often sufficient.
Your attorney will only request your child’s participation if it is critical for the outcome — and even then, seek ways to minimize trauma, like videotaped testimony. Any examinations would be done sensitively by expert doctors. Although each case varies, your lawyer has your child’s best interests at heart.
The aftermath of a birth injury turns lives upside down. Legal action cannot erase what happened, but it can empower families to secure their child’s best possible future. An experienced birth injury attorney guides clients through the complex legal process, investigates negligence, computes damages, and negotiates or litigates to obtain fair compensation. With the right lawyer, families gain financial means to access top-quality medical care, therapy, education, equipment, and other essentials for their child. No family should have to handle these challenges alone. Contact a qualified birth injury lawyer for a free consultation and take the first step toward justice and healing.