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Know Your Rights After a Traumatic Birth Injury

When Can You Sue After A Traumatic Birth Injury?

While traumatic birth injuries are devastating, unexpected, and challenging, not every instance of a traumatic birth injury will qualify for a lawsuit. In order for a lawsuit to be viable to the plaintiff, someone must be at fault for the harm caused to the plaintiff.

The best way to know if your birth injury case qualifies is to talk to an expert and experienced medical malpractice attorney or lawyer. At The Cochran Firm Cleveland, we provide aggressive and dedicated representation for our clients who have suffered traumatic injuries due to substandard medical treatment.

What Is The Statute Of Limitations For Birth Injuries In Ohio?

In Ohio, there are different time limits depending on the type of birth injury.

  • For medical malpractice claims for minors, the statute of limitations is 19 years. This allows time to fully assess the damages experienced by the child.
  • For prenatal injuries in medical malpractice, the statute of limitations is one year.
  • Finally, the statute of limitations for wrongful death claims after birth is two years.

What Kind of Traumatic Birth Injuries Are There?

Any number of things can go wrong during labor and delivery. The type of injury that an infant might experience will vary greatly depending on the circumstances of their birth. 

  • Shoulder Dystocia
  • Brain Trauma
  • Facial Nerve Palsy
  • Cerebral Palsy
  • Brachial Plexus Injury (Erb’s Palsy)
  • Broken Bones
  • Spinal Damage
  • Cephalohematoma
  • Caput Succedaneum
  • Perinatal Asphyxia
What Maternal Injuries Can Occur During Childbirth?
  • Uterine Rupture
  • Vagina Tears
  • Anal Fissures
  • Episiotomy
  • Cesarean Sections (C-Sections)
  • Preeclampsia
  • Anesthesia Misdose
  • Spinal Epidural Errors

The goal of the lawsuit is to help you and your child achieve the highest quality of life possible.

How Long Does It Take To Settle A Birth Injury Lawsuit?

The truth is that birth injury lawsuits are particularly complex and take a long time to resolve. Aside from the doctors and other medical providers, the hospital will usually bring in legal support, which can make winning a case challenging, depending on the quality of evidence available.

Should your case proceed to court, you can expect it to take months or years, especially to get the highest level of compensation.

How Will I Know How Much to Settle For?

Talking together with experts to research the potential damages that resulted from you or your child’s injury will be used to evaluate how much to settle for. Aside from consulting with your personal injury attorney, the following individuals may be consulted to help you know how much your settlement should be.

  • Financial Planners
  • Medical Experts
  • Physical Therapists
  • Counselors

Other considerations for how big your settlement will be include:

  • Whether you or your child need ongoing medical care
  • What kind of support that will be needed due to the injury
  • Loss of future earnings
  • Emotional distress
  • Physical pain and suffering
What Type of Damages Come From Birth Injuries?

The extent and severity of the damages you and your child experienced will influence which type of damages and the amount of damage awards that you may receive.

  • Potential damages include:
  • The cost of care for you or your child
  • The cost of therapy and support for the injuries
  • Loss of income for you or your child
  • Medical expenses
  • Costs for disability
  • The costs for special education services

What Causes Birth Injuries?

There are many causes of birth injuries that vary depending on the circumstances of the birth.

Birth Injuries to the Child
  • Improper use of medical instruments
  • Failure to perform a C-section
  • Improper use of forceps
  • Delayed birth (labor lasting more than 18 hours)
  • Oxygen deprivation from a prolapsed umbilical cord
  • Oxygen deficiency from underdeveloped lungs
  • Group B Streptococcus
  • Rubella (German measles)
  • Chicken Pox (Varicella)
  • Syphilis infections
  • Toxoplasmosis
  • Hepatitis B
  • Listeria

Infection-based injuries usually do not result in the need for a medical malpractice case. However, if you or your child are injured due to a doctor’s failure to treat a dangerous viral or bacterial infection, you should speak to a birth injury attorney about a case evaluation.

Maternal Birth Injury Causes
  • Acute trauma from car accidents
  • Positioning of the baby during delivering (breech birth)
  • Having a baby over 8.82 lbs
  • Fast labor
  • Delayed birth or long labor
  • Labor and delivery complications
  • The use of forceps or ventouse

Keep in mind that not every injury will meet the requirements for a birth injury lawsuit. But, the best way to find out if your case will succeed is to meet with a qualified personal injury attorney.

I’ve Been Injured, How Do I Know If I Have a Case?

Traumatic birth injuries are a type of medical malpractice lawsuit, and depending on the cause of your injury, your case may branch into other areas of personal injury law. These laws are nuanced and complicated. Therefore, you’ll need the help of a professional team of traumatic birth injury attorneys, lawyers, paralegals, and medical experts to evaluate your case.

At The Cochran Firm Cleveland, before taking your case, we are happy to provide a free case evaluation. In this evaluation, we’ll ask you details about your case such as:

  • When did the injury occur?
  • What Signs of an injury are you seeing in your child?
  • Do you believe this injury is the result of substandard medical care?

Who Is Responsible for My Birth Injury?

In birth injury cases, the responsible party can be any number of providers who were involved in giving you medical care as you had your baby. It could be a single doctor, nurse, or anesthesiologist, or the whole team of medical providers could be at fault. Even companies that produce the pharmaceutical drugs or medical devices used during labor could be held liable in the event of an injury.

What Kind of Evidence Do I Need for a Case?

Discharge Summary

This is one of the first items that our attorneys will request from the hospital. The discharge summary will have both the mother’s and the baby’s complete hospital records. This will give us a complete and accurate picture of the level of care you received and whether or not malpractice took place.

Eyewitness Testimonies

Anyone who was there in the operating room or attending to the birth mother before labor will have evidence.

Expert Testimony

In a birth injury lawsuit, our attorneys will consult with experts in the field of birth and birth injury. We will contact and work with obstetricians, doctors, anesthesiologists, life-care planners, nurses, pediatricians, and more to get an accurate picture of if your injury was from malpractice. These experts will also help us know the type and amount of damages that your case will be worth.

Birth Injury Attorneys at The Cochran Firm Cleveland

Because the fight for compensation after a traumatic birth injury is long and hard, you need a team of expert and dedicated attorneys who will stay with you until the case is settled. Our group of attorneys at The Cochran Firm Cleveland are committed to representing you with the same level of professionalism and dedication that our founder Johnny Cochran Jr. founded our firm on. Call us today for a FREE case evaluation.

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