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Cerebral palsy medical malpractice

Cerebral palsy (CP) is often caused by a medical mistake during childbirth. If you suspect your child’s condition was the result of cerebral palsy medical malpractice, you may be eligible for financial compensation. These critical funds can help you afford the quality of care your child deserves throughout their lifetime. Talk to a patient advocate today for information on your family's legal options.

What is cerebral palsy medical malpractice?

A pregnant woman holding an ultrasound picture.

Cerebral palsy medical malpractice occurs when a hospital, doctor, or other health care professional causes the condition to occur through a negligent act during the birthing process.

A cerebral palsy medical malpractice claim must prove that:

  1. The medical professional had a duty to provide care to the patient (doctor-patient relationship)
  2. The medical professional's actions (or omissions) fell below the accepted standard of care, causing a breach of duty
  3. There was a direct link between the CP diagnosis and negligence

If you suspect that a delivery doctor, nurse, or medical facility caused your child’s cerebral palsy, you may have legal options.

Cerebral Palsy and Medical Malpractice Video Thumbnail

Learn how medical malpractice can lead to cerebral palsy that could have been avoided. If your child was harmed, you may be able to access financial aid. View Transcript.

Duration: 1 min 14 sec

Medical malpractice can take many forms, including failures that should never happen. Sadly, when these failures occur during childbirth, the results can be catastrophic, causing cerebral palsy that could have been prevented with proper care. These failures can include:

Failure to detect and properly treat infections, putting innocent lives at risk.

Fetal distress should never go unnoticed, denying babies the vital oxygen they need.

Failure to schedule or perform a necessary cesarean section, endangering both the baby and the mother.

Failure to detect a prolapsed umbilical cord, a dangerous situation that demands immediate attention.

Improper use of delivery tools, like vacuum extractors and forceps, causing irreversible harm.

At Cerebral Palsy Guide, we understand the devastation that arises when preventable medical mistakes during childbirth lead to cerebral palsy. Our dedicated team is here to fight for justice on behalf of families like yours.

Contact us today. We're here to help you and your family.

Families often have many unanswered questions following a CP diagnosis. While the causes of cerebral palsy are not always known, the reality is that health care providers may cover up their mistakes.

If you have questions, our labor and delivery nurses can help. They have years of experience helping families with cerebral palsy medical malpractice cases and are ready to talk with you in confidence.

Connect with one of our labor and delivery nurses now.

Forms of cerebral palsy medical malpractice

Brain damage causing cerebral palsy can be the result of medical errors or negligence that occurred before, during, or shortly after the birthing process.

Examples of medical malpractice that commonly cause cerebral palsy include:
  • Failure to detect fetal distress, such as lack of oxygen (hypoxia)
  • Failure to detect and/or properly treat infections
  • Failure to detect umbilical cord prolapse (when it drops down before the baby)
  • Failure to schedule or perform a necessary cesarean section (C-section)
  • Injury through improper use of delivery tools, such as forceps delivery complications

The infographic below includes data from a study by the TDC Group (a physician-owned insurance company) highlighting the contributing factors of injury for the newborn age group (less than 1 month old).

Contributing factors of injury for neonate age group (<1 month):

Selection and management of therapy
Patient assessment issues
Communication among providers
Technical performance
Insufficient/lack of documentation
Patient factors
Communication between patient/family and providers

If you have any reason to believe your child’s condition was preventable, you may be able to seek compensation through a cerebral palsy medical malpractice lawsuit.

Get a confidential and free consultation now.

What is a cerebral palsy lawsuit?

A cerebral palsy lawsuit is a type of medical malpractice claim filed against medical professionals responsible for a child's condition.

By filing a cerebral palsy medical malpractice lawsuit, families can seek financial compensation to cover their child's medical care, including therapies, treatments, and other necessary expenses.

According to the TDC Group, the average medical malpractice payout for children under 1 month is $936,843.

The lawsuit process typically involves a free case review, gathering evidence, filing the lawsuit, and working to negotiate a cerebral palsy settlement.

Cerebral palsy lawsuit settlements

A cerebral palsy settlement is an agreed-upon payout negotiated between the plaintiff (usually parents or caregivers) and the defendant (medical professional, facility, or their insurers).

Settlements are offered to families in cerebral palsy lawsuits as a way to provide financial support to cover treatment costs.

Cerebral palsy settlements often occur out of court but can also be negotiated while a trial is underway.

Cerebral Palsy Guide has partnered with some of the best cerebral palsy medical malpractice law firms in the country. Together they have recovered over $862 million for families affected by birth injuries.

Here are just a few of the CP lawsuit payouts our legal partners have secured:
  • $10.4+ million for a family in Pennsylvania
  • $9 million for a Colorado family
  • $7.8 million for a Florida family
  • $6 million for a New York family
  • $4.1 million for a family in New Jersey

Reaching a settlement can reduce the length of time of a lawsuit, offer certainty about compensation, and spare the emotional burdens of a court trial.

Find out if your family is eligible to pursue a cerebral palsy settlement. You may be able to access financial support to help your child live their best possible life.

Get a free case review now.

Can a hospital cause cerebral palsy?

Yes, a hospital can be liable for cerebral palsy medical malpractice. Birth injury lawsuits are often filed against multiple defendants, including individual physicians and the hospital as a whole.

Hospitals are expected to have policies and practices in place to avoid any instances of patient harm. They are also required to provide all patients with a safe and sterile environment.

Additionally, hospitals are responsible for hiring staff with appropriate medical education, training, and licensing. The hospital can be held legally accountable if a staff member does not meet the requirements to practice.

Hospitals can also be held responsible for a birth injury caused by a lack of on-duty medical professionals. The hospital has a duty to ensure that there are enough staff members at all times to keep patients safe.

Symptoms of cerebral palsy

Children that sustain birth trauma have a higher risk of developing conditions related to permanent neurological damage, such as cerebral palsy.

However, cerebral palsy is not always diagnosed right after childbirth. Therefore, parents and caregivers should look for signs of a brain injury that could be cerebral palsy symptoms.

Common signs and symptoms of CP include:
  • Arched back while crying
  • Excessive drooling
  • Hands curled into a claw
  • High-pitched crying
  • Low heart rate
  • Low oxygen levels
  • Muscle stiffness or looseness
  • Seizures
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Weak or absent reflexes

These can be signs of a birth injury and could indicate the presence of cerebral palsy or other forms of brain damage. And in many cases, these health conditions could have been prevented with proper medical care.

How can a cerebral palsy claim help me?

Compensation from a successful cerebral palsy medical malpractice claim can help cover lifetime care for your child.

Watch our short video to learn more about how filing a cerebral palsy medical malpractice claim can help your family.

How Legal Assistance Can Pay for Cerebral Palsy Treatment Video Thumbnail

Learn what types of medical negligence can cause cerebral palsy and how to pursue financial compensation for your child’s treatment. Call us for legal help today at (855) 220-1101. View Transcript.

Duration: 1 min 29 sec

Cerebral palsy, or CP, is a lifelong condition that can require constant care and treatment.

It is also expensive. “How expensive?” you may ask.

Between therapy, medications, and special home accommodations, the CDC estimates that the lifetime cost to care for someone with CP is over 1.6 million dollars!

Understandably, many parents and family members aren’t prepared to pay for these unplanned medical expenses. Seeking legal aid can help families get much-needed compensation if there is evidence their child’s condition could have been prevented.

A qualified birth injury lawyer can figure out whether an act of negligence led to your child’s cerebral palsy.

Some examples of medical negligence include:

  • Failing to detect infections during pregnancy
  • Missing signs of fetal distress or lack of oxygen
  • Neglecting to perform a C-section in a timely manner
  • Using excessive force during delivery
  • Neglecting to monitor a mother or baby’s heart rate during labor and delivery
  • Improperly using forceps or vacuum extractors during delivery
  • And failing to treat severe newborn jaundice

The best way to find out if your child is eligible for legal aid is to speak with a birth injury lawyer.

Contact us today for a free case evaluation and see if you’re entitled to compensation that can help your child get life-changing care.

Filing a cerebral palsy medical malpractice claim

Your birth injury attorney will take care of all the paperwork and legal heavy lifting to file your cerebral palsy medical malpractice claim so you can focus on caring for your child.

An experienced cerebral palsy lawyer will work to find enough evidence to make your case as strong as possible.

Evidence required in a cerebral palsy medical malpractice claim may include:
  • Imaging test results
  • Medical bills
  • Photographs
  • Prenatal and birth records
  • Other forms of documentation

Remember: It is critical to file your cerebral palsy claim within your state’s statute of limitations. These laws put a strict time limit on how long you have to file your lawsuit.

If you miss your deadline, you may be forever prevented from taking legal action for your child.

Connecting with an experienced cerebral palsy lawyer right away is often the best step.

Find out if you have a legal case

The best way to know whether you are eligible to file a cerebral palsy medical malpractice lawsuit is to get a free case evaluation.

Negligent medical professionals should be held responsible for cerebral palsy medical malpractice. Working with an experienced cerebral palsy law firm will ensure your case has the best chance for success.

Get a free case review today to learn more about cerebral palsy medical malpractice and find out if you are eligible for financial compensation.

Cerebral palsy medical malpractice FAQs

Is cerebral palsy caused by medical malpractice?

Cerebral palsy is caused by medical malpractice when negligent care during childbirth leads to the child's injury, making doctors responsible for the condition. However, cerebral palsy is a complex condition, and its causes are not always known.

Many families are unsure about what caused their child's cerebral palsy, and sometimes health care providers try to hide their mistakes. An experienced cerebral palsy medical malpractice attorney can help you get to the bottom of what caused your child’s condition.

Can cerebral palsy be caused by doctors?

Cerebral palsy can be caused by doctors if they are negligent with their care during childbirth. Medical professionals are expected to uphold the accepted standard of care. When that standard of care is not met and results in an injury such as cerebral palsy, doctors can be held responsible.

Can you sue if your child has cerebral palsy?

You may be able to sue for cerebral palsy if your child’s birth injury was caused by a medical mistake during childbirth.

Filing a cerebral palsy claim can help your family seek financial compensation for your child’s cerebral palsy treatment.

What is cerebral palsy compensation?

Cerebral palsy compensation is a financial award from a legal claim filed for cerebral palsy medical malpractice. This compensation helps cover medical expenses, therapies, and support needed to ensure the child's lifetime well-being and quality of life.

How do lawyers prove medical malpractice?

Lawyers must gather evidence to prove that the child’s condition was caused by medical malpractice.

An experienced cerebral palsy attorney will gather documentation such as medical records, maternal medical history, photographs, hospital bills, and more.

Attorneys from the best birth injury law firms have access to large medical and legal databases to support your claim and help build your case.

Cerebral Palsy Guide was founded upon the goal of educating families about cerebral palsy, raising awareness, and providing support for children, parents, and caregivers affected by the condition. Our easy-to-use website offers simple, straightforward information that provides families with medical and legal solutions. We are devoted to helping parents and children access the tools they need to live a life full of happiness

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  2. CRICO Strategies. (2015). Malpractice Risks in Communication Failures 2015 Annual Benchmarking Report. Retrieved July 27, 2023, from https://psnet.ahrq.gov/issue/malpractice-risks-communication-failures-2015-annual-benchmarking-report
  3. Kessler, D. (2011). Evaluating the medical malpractice system and options for reform. Retrieved July 27, 2023, from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3195420/
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  5. Sartwelle, T., & Johnston, J. (2015, June). Cerebral palsy litigation: Change course or abandon ship. Retrieved July 27, 2023, from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4431995/
  6. Sauber-Schatz, E. K., et al. (2010). Descriptive epidemiology of birth trauma in the United States in 2003. Paediatric and perinatal epidemiology, 24(2), 116–124. Retrieved July 27, 2023, from https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-3016.2009.01077.x