Birth Injury Claims
The birth of a new baby is one of the most exciting times when everything goes according to plan. However, in some cases, medical negligence, traumatic injury or trauma can result in long-lasting consequences. Whether you have experienced an injury due to clinical negligence when giving birth or your child has sustained a life-threatening condition, you may be able to claim compensation. As highly qualified legal professionals, our team has the experience and knowledge to support you through the birth injury claims process.
If you are considering pursuing a birth injury claim, please get in touch today by calling 0800 086 2929, emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or by completing our Free Online Enquiry Form. A member of our birth injury claims team will be in touch with you to discuss your circumstances.
How to pursue birth injury claims
To make a claim for medical negligence against a hospital or medical professional working with a highly qualified team of solicitors is your ideal starting point. A trained solicitor will provide expert guidance on whether you have a potential birth injury claim and cover the details and information required for this process. Firstly, the strength of your claim will be assessed to determine whether there is a good likelihood of success. Following this, evidence and information will be gathered, including medical records, witness statements and consultation from an independent medical specialist.
Once the evidence has been collected, a Letter of Claim can then be issued to the person or organisation you are claiming against. This letter includes the specifics of your claim and allegations regarding medical negligence. Birth injuries cover various individual medical concerns and problems, making a thorough and in-depth investigation integral for these cases. At this point, the defendant may choose to deny liability, requiring Court proceedings, or prefer to agree to a settlement of compensation without initiating Court proceedings.
If a medical negligence case goes to Court, the judge will then decide the outcome of the claim. The majority of birth injury cases are settled outside of Court. But, if a claim progresses to this point, a team of qualified and experienced birth injury claims solicitors is the ideal option to ensure you have the best representation to improve your chance of securing a fair settlement.
Who can make a birth injury claim?
If you have received an injury during or immediately before or after giving birth, you can choose to make a birth injury claim if you believe clinical negligence caused this trauma. For example, if you give birth and become ill with a life-threatening infection immediately after, you may have a medical negligence case. Any injury caused by the negligence of medical professionals may be eligible for a claim.
If you claim medical negligence due to harm to your child, including short-term injury, lifelong conditions or life-threatening illness, you can choose to do so as the parent to that child. For instance, if a baby does not get enough oxygen due to the failure of a doctor and has brain damage as a result, you can claim on their behalf. It is also possible to make multiple birth injury claims if both the mother and child are injured during birth.
What are the most common types of birth injury?
Birth injuries cover various health concerns and problems arising during the birth process due to medical negligence. These range from minor trauma that will not have long-standing effects to severe cases resulting in stillbirth or life-limiting injuries. The most common types of birth injury can be divided into two categories, as listed below:
Birth injuries to the mother
Birth injuries to the mother can occur while giving birth as a result of medical negligence. Some examples of claims you could make as a person who gave birth include the following:
- Maternal infection
- Perineal tears
- Incorrect suturing
- Failure to manage pre-eclampsia
Birth injuries to the child
Birth injuries to the child can occur during the birth of a baby, where they may receive trauma or injury due to clinical negligence or failure. Examples of the injuries you could claim include:
- Broken bones
- Cerebral Palsy
- Erb’s Palsy
- Birth asphyxia or hypoxia
- Birth trauma
How much time do I have to make a birth injury claim?
If you are making a claim for your child who received a birth injury, you have up until their 18th birthday to claim compensation. After their 18th birthday, your child may choose to claim any point before they turn 21. If you are claiming for a child who passed away due to a birth injury, such as a stillbirth, you have three years to make your claim from the date of death. This time limit also applies if you claim compensation for medical negligence as the person who gave birth.
The exception to this limit is if your child lacks mental capacity. For example, an individual over the age of 18 may not have the capacity to make a claim if they have severe learning difficulties or brain damage. In these cases, the three-year time limit does not apply.
When claiming compensation for a child with a birth injury, this process can take multiple years to complete your claim. The full extent of injuries, such as brain damage and Cerebral Palsy, are often not immediately apparent in newborns or young children. As a result, the future care requirements and needs of the child must be fully investigated and evaluated. Speaking to a solicitor specialising in birth injury claims can give you insight into when it is best to make your claim.
How much can I claim for birth injury negligence?
The complexity and variation in birth injury claims mean there is not one defined amount of compensation you can claim for. For example, compensation for a broken bone due to medical negligence may have an entirely different compensatory amount than a claim for a lifelong health condition where the child needs continual care. Each case is handled individually, depending on the circumstances surrounding the claim. For children with birth injuries leading to disability, compensation could include coverage for the following:
- Occupational therapy
- Home adaptations
- Around-the-clock care
- Specialist education
- Mobility equipment
- Speech therapy
Depending on the needs of the child or the birth parent, medical negligence cases can be in the millions to cover the necessary lifelong support, care and equipment required. Speaking with a highly qualified solicitors with experience in clinical negligence, particularly birth injury claims is an ideal method to ensure your compensation is correctly calculated before you make a claim.
In some instances, such as where a child requires immediate and ongoing care, it may be decided that you are a suitable candidate for interim payments. These early payments are provided earlier than the final settlement, helping to cover the costs of care for yourself or your child. For example, interim payments may be awarded to cover rehabilitation costs following a birth injury or to provide the urgent medical equipment necessary for the care of the child.
For birth injuries affecting the mother, factors such as loss of earnings and loss of pension contribution are also considered part of compensation. Any necessary rehabilitation, treatment or medical care for a birth injury that affects the mother applies in the same way as compensation provided for a child with a birth injury.
How much does it cost to bring a birth injury claim?
Our specialist solicitors use their knowledge of medical negligence and compensation to offer no win no, fee services to many of our clients. As such, you may not need to cover up-front costs for your claim. We have extensive experience in supporting families through the process of birth injury claims and other clinical negligence matters. We provide peace of mind to our clients to help them recover and move on from a traumatic incident, with the support they need to cover any required care.
Can you help my child access treatment and rehabilitation?
Ongoing treatment and rehabilitation are important for the well-being and health of children who have suffered a birth injury. As part of the compensation process, the needs of your child are carefully evaluated by an independent medical specialist. The information gathered during this assessment and medical records form the basis for your birth injury claim.
As detailed above, interim payments are one option for accessing treatment and rehabilitation for your child before the claim is settled. If your concern is about treatment and rehabilitation for your child in the future as they grow, the basis of your claim includes all necessary future care and support they will need throughout their lifetime.
Birth injury claims specialists
If you are considering making a medical negligence claim following a birth injury, the right team of qualified solicitors is your ideal choice. Get in contact with our experienced team of solicitors today by calling 0800 086 2929, emailing email@example.com or by completing our Free Online Enquiry Form. A member of our team will be in touch with you to discuss the possibility of compensation and provide insight into the process to follow.