When complications arise during childbirth, it is your doctor’s job to know how to address them. Failure to properly do so can lead to harm to the child and mother.
If your child and/or spouse or partner suffered a birth injury, a Michigan birth injury lawyer with Ben Crump Law, PLLC can look into your case and determine if medical negligence occurred. If your provider made a medical error, you could win financial compensation.
Birth Injuries Happen During Labor and Delivery
Birth injuries result from trauma occurring before, during, or just after labor and delivery. They are different from birth defects, which develop during pregnancy. While factors that increase the risk of a birth injury often happen naturally, many injuries are preventable with proper treatment.
Your doctor should screen for potential problems and know how to recognize and address complications when they occur. Your doctor or health care provider may be responsible for your child’s injury if their failure to correctly detect or respond to these or other complications caused your child’s injury:
- Placenta problems
- Umbilical cord problems
- Abnormal fetal presentation, including shoulder-first or breech positioning
- Prolonged labor or labor that does not progress
- Lack of oxygen or blood flow to the fetus (perinatal asphyxia)
- Exceptionally high or low birth weight
- Premature labor
- Severe maternal illness or fetal infection
- Exposure to certain drugs
- Abnormal fetal heart rate
How do You Know If Malpractice Is to Blame for Your Child’s Injury?
Doctors and other health care professionals have a duty to care for their patients according to the accepted standards and practices of the medical field. When they do not act according to these standards and their mistakes harm others, they may be guilty of medical malpractice. Examples of provider negligence may include:
- Improper use of vacuums or forceps during delivery
- Failure to order a cesarean section when necessary
- Failure to recognize signs of fetal or maternal distress, such as an abnormal heart rate, lack of oxygen, or excessive bleeding
- Failure to identify an abnormal fetal presentation or above or below average birth weights
- Improper use of medications during labor and delivery
- Failure to perform prenatal tests and screenings
- Failure to identify maternal risk factors, such as obesity or illness
Proving malpractice can be tricky. It requires poring over medical records, often with the help of experts, to determine how and why your child and/or spouse or partner’s injuries occurred. Our attorneys are familiar with birth injury cases, and we will review what took place before, during, and immediately after birth.
We will speak with medical professionals and eyewitnesses, obtain all the available notes, test results, and other documentation, and build your case.
Birth Injuries Can Affect a Child’s Mental and Physical Health for Life
According to Merck Manual, common birth injuries include fractures, bleeding in and around the brain, and nerve damage. Some injuries may heal with time, but other conditions, like cerebral palsy, can affect your child for life. Symptoms of common birth injuries include:
- Developmental delays
- Coordination problems
- Speech problems
- Paralysis or loss of mobility
- Learning disabilities
- Hearing and vision impairment
Our Lawyers Seek Monetary Awards to Pay for Your Child’s Medical Care and More
If negligence caused your child’s birth injury, you deserve help paying for medical treatment and services they require. Our Michigan birth injury attorneys can help you pursue the cost of your child’s medical bills, including the cost of emergency treatment, surgeries, and hospitalizations. We can also seek awards for your child’s future needs, such as physical and cognitive therapy, medical procedures, and specialists’ services.
If your child needs special schooling or services to aid in their development, we can seek awards to pay for these interventions. We can also help you pursue compensation for necessary home modifications, such as the inclusion of stairlifts, ramps, and railings.
Caring for your child may mean you miss work, can no longer work, or must cut back on your hours. We can help you seek the value of your lost wages, as well as compensation for the loss of your future earning capacity. If your spouse or partner cannot work because of childbirth injuries, we can seek wage compensation on their behalf, as well.
Michigan Places a Cap on Awards for Pain and Suffering
You and your child may qualify for awards for your pain and suffering. These damages compensate for the ways in which your child’s injury negatively affects their quality of life, as well as the quality of life of you and your family.
You can seek pain and suffering compensation for issues like chronic pain, depression, loss of sleep, loss of enjoyment of life, and anxiety. While there is no limit to the compensation you can receive for medical bills and other concrete injury-related expenses, there is a limit to how much you can win for pain and suffering in a medical malpractice case.
According to Michigan Compiled Laws § 600.1483, the damages cap is set each year by the state treasurer based on changes in the consumer price index. Our lawyers can tell you more about the most recent caps and the potential value of your pain and suffering awards.
You Have a Limited Amount of Time to Take Action
We will start pursuing compensation for you with a medical malpractice insurance claim. It is a good idea to begin this process as soon as possible. You want to leave plenty of time to pursue your claim and take legal action, if necessary.
If insurance denies your claim or does not offer adequate awards, we can assist you with a lawsuit. According to Michigan Compiled Laws § 600.5805(6), you generally have two years from the time a malpractice injury occurs, or two years from the time you discover the injury, to file your suit.
The court may extend the statute of limitations for malpractice injuries caused to minor children.
Call Ben Crump Law, PLLC Today
To get started on your birth injury case, call Ben Crump Law, PLLC at (800) 641-8998 for your free consultation. A member of our team can tell you more about how our Michigan birth injury lawyers can serve you.