What is a cerebral palsy lawsuit?
A cerebral palsy lawsuit is a type of medical malpractice claim filed against the medical professionals that caused your child’s condition.
Health care providers are expected to uphold a standard of care and deliver your child safely. if they do not, your child could suffer severe injuries that can cause cerebral palsy, which is a lifelong disability. These doctors may have committed medical malpractice and can be held legally accountable.
Cerebral palsy lawsuits can be filed if a medical professional failed to:
- Detect maternal infections during pregnancy
- Detect signs of fetal distress, such as oxygen deprivation
- Identify any risk factors during pregnancy
- Perform a necessary C-section (cesarean section)
- Properly use delivery tools such as forceps or vacuum extractors
- Treat severe jaundice in a newborn
If you believe your child developed cerebral palsy due to medical negligence, you may be able to file a lawsuit through a birth injury law firm. Speak with one of our caring team members to learn if you qualify for financial compensation.
Why should I file a cerebral palsy lawsuit?
Through a cerebral palsy lawsuit, you can receive compensation to pay for the medical care your child needs. These funds can be used to pay for past and future medical expenses.
Most cases of cerebral palsy require specialized medical care to manage a child’s symptoms. Many families may struggle to afford their child’s cerebral palsy treatment. According to a study from Massachusetts General Hospital, about 40% of families of children with special needs experience financial burden due to their child’s condition.
Financial compensation from a medical malpractice case can pay for:
- Assistive devices
- Mobility aids
- Occupational therapy
- Physical therapy
- Special education costs
- Speech therapy
- Transportation equipment
- Other medical treatment costs
It costs $1 million on average to cover all of the costs of caring for a child with cerebral palsy throughout their life, according to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC).
In addition to alleviating any financial burden, cerebral palsy lawsuits can help your family feel a sense of justice served. Lawsuits can hold medical professionals accountable for their mistakes that cause your child to develop cerebral palsy.
Cerebral palsy lawsuits also bring birth injuries and negligent doctors to the attention of other parents. New or expecting parents can be warned about the associated risks of doctors, nurses, or hospitals that do not provide quality care.
Speak with one of our registered nurses if you believe your child is showing symptoms of cerebral palsy. We can determine if your child’s condition stems from medical negligence.
Steps to filing a cerebral palsy lawsuit
Although each case may differ, each cerebral palsy lawsuit will generally follow a similar set of steps. Learn about the steps that many cases follow below.
1. Free case reviewDuring your free case review, a patient advocate will gather information regarding your child’s injury. If you have a qualifying case, a cerebral palsy lawyer will take on your case.
The lawyer will assess all of the facts given to determine whether or not you have a strong enough case to file a lawsuit. If your lawyer believes you have a strong case, you can then enter into an attorney-client relationship.
It is important to note that you do not need a cerebral palsy diagnosis to get a free case review. Birth injury attorneys will have the resources to determine if your child’s symptoms are an indication of cerebral palsy.
2. Gather evidence
Once you agree to work with a cerebral palsy attorney, they will gather all types of written documentation to show that your child’s condition was caused by the medical professionals that helped in the birthing process.
Pieces of evidence may include:
- Documentation outlining complications and co-existing conditions
- Documentation describing the events before, during, and shortly after birth
- Imaging tests such as X-rays and MRIs
- Maternal health records outlining any risk factors during pregnancy
- Medical records that prove the child suffers from cerebral palsy and other conditions due to a birth injury
3. File the lawsuitYour attorney can file a cerebral palsy lawsuit in the court system after key pieces of evidence have been gathered. Once the lawsuit has been filed, you will become the plaintiff and the doctor and/or hospital that delivered your child will become the defendant.
There is limited time to file a lawsuit. Each state has its own statute of limitations, which sets time limits on how long you have to sue. If the lawsuit isn’t filed within the deadline, you will lose your right to sue and collect compensation forever. Connect with a lawyer as soon as possible to file your lawsuit before time runs out.
Your lawyer will ask for financial compensation to pay for your child’s injuries in the initial complaint. The defendants will have around 30 days to respond to the complaint. If the defendants refuse to pay, the lawsuit will continue.
Legal teams from both parties will work to gather more evidence to support their arguments.
During the discovery phase, your lawyer may collect testimonies from witnesses or medical experts to prove the defendants were negligent with their care.
5. Settlement vs. Trial
Many cerebral palsy lawsuits either end in a settlement or a trial verdict. In a settlement, the defendants will agree to pay a lump sum of compensation to the plaintiff. The lawsuit then ends without a trial in court.
If both parties do not agree to a cerebral palsy settlement, the case may move onto a trial. In a trial, both parties argue their cases to a judge or jury. Trials can be risky because if the court finds the defendant not guilty, you will not win any compensation at all.
Only a small percentage of cerebral palsy cases go to trial since they are costly, risky, and can add a significant amount of time to the lawsuit process. Thankfully, skilled cerebral palsy attorneys can build a strong case in the event a trial does occur.
Get a free case review to see if you can file a cerebral palsy lawsuit.
Notable cerebral palsy lawsuit settlements
Cerebral palsy lawsuit settlement amounts can vary depending on a variety of factors. Settlement amounts are often calculated by the type of cerebral palsy, severity of the condition, estimated medical costs, and geographical location.
According to a study from TDC Group, the average medical malpractice lawsuit settlement payout for cases involving children under one month old is almost $1 million.
Some notable cerebral palsy lawsuit settlement amounts include:
- $10.47 million Pennsylvania family
- $9 million Alaska family
- $8.9 million Pennsylvania family
- $8 million New York family
- $7.8 million Florida family
Your birth injury lawyer will work with you to determine the value of your birth injury lawsuit and how much compensation you may be entitled to.
File your cerebral palsy lawsuit today
Cerebral palsy can put a huge emotional, physical, and financial strain on families. Thankfully, a cerebral palsy lawsuit can help your family ease some of these burdens by securing compensation to cover medical bills.
Cerebral palsy lawsuits can also hold health care providers responsible for their medical mistakes. Doctors, nurses, and other medical professionals are trained to safely deliver babies and prevent complications that may lead to brain injury and cerebral palsy.
If you believe your child’s condition could have been prevented, you may be entitled to financial compensation through a cerebral palsy lawsuit.
Get a free case review to see if you qualify to take legal action.