If your family suffered the tragedy of a birth injury, your possible legal remedies include a medical malpractice legal action or a birth injury lawsuit. A Abogada de lesiones personales handling medical malpractice cases can evaluate your situation and determine if they can seek birth injury compensation from the at-fault party.
Sometimes, the liability insurance carrier for the negligent health care provider or facility will agree to pay a medical malpractice settlement. In fact, most birth injury claims settle without having to go through a trial. Still, sometimes, when an insurer refuses to pay a fair settlement amount, it is necessary to file a lawsuit and go to trial.
You Have Legal Options If Your Child Suffers a Birth Injury From Medical Malpractice
Typically, the first thing a family with a birth injury does is file legal action against the doctor, hospital, or another medical professional or healthcare facility. Sometimes, more than one party made mistakes that collectively caused the birth injury. In that situation, the family can file a negligence claim against all involved parties.
A medical negligence lawyer gathers the evidence that supports the family’s claims about what happened and sends a demand letter to the at-fault parties, letting them know about the family’s action. The letter can state the monetary amount the plaintiffs seek for their losses. At this stage, the case is a medical malpractice claim.
The defendants’ response will be a factor in whether the involved parties settle the case or end up in court over a medical malpractice lawsuit. Your lawyer might need to file a lawsuit to preserve your right to pursue compensation if the filing deadline is approaching.
The Filing Deadline for Birth Injury Medical Malpractice Lawsuits
In general, the statute of limitations for medical malpractice lawsuits is one year from discovery or three years from the injury, whichever deadline happens first, according to CCP § 340.5. The filing deadline could be extended beyond three years if:
- The plaintiff can prove the defendant committed fraud.
- The plaintiff can prove the defendant intentionally concealed or left a foreign object in the injured person’s body without a diagnostic or therapeutic purpose.
Children who suffer medical malpractice injuries have different filing deadline rules. If the child was younger than age 6 at the time of the injury, the statute of limitations requires the lawsuit to be filed before the child’s eighth birthday or within three years, whichever is the later date.
What Happens If the Plaintiff Doesn’t File a Lawsuit Before the Statute of Limitations Expires?
The statute of limitations has consequences. If the family misses the filing deadline, California law could forever bar them from holding the at-fault party accountable for their actions and the birth injuries the child suffered.
While families have legal remedies for medical malpractice that causes birth injuries, the law isn’t always clear or easy to follow. If you have questions or concerns about the statute of limitations, you can consult with a medical malpractice attorney from our firm, even if you think that the filing deadline has expired in your case.
Common Types of Birth Injuries
de investigación manual de Merck writes that common birth injuries include the following:
- Perinatal asphyxia, which means the baby’s body did not get enough blood flow or oxygen around the time of labor and delivery. Depending on the severity of the brain injury, the baby might have a learning disorder, delayed development, or cerebral palsy.
- Nerve injuries to facial, brachial plexus (shoulder area), spinal, or phrenic chest and abdominal areas) nerves. Injuries to these nerves can cause temporary or permanent damage. Severe nerve injury can result in paralysis or death.
- Head and brain injuries can include bleeding inside or outside of the brain, skull fractures, and hemorrhages.
Whether your family explores the possibility of a cerebral palsy lawsuit or another birth injury case involving a medical error, you should talk to a medical negligence attorney as soon as possible to preserve evidence and comply with the state’s statute of limitations deadline.
An Attorney Can Demand Recoverable Damages in California Birth Injury Cases
A child who suffers a birth injury could face a lifetime of challenges. You might be able to recover monetary damages for your financial losses, including the medical costs and increased expenses attributable to the birth injury over your child’s lifetime.
You might also qualify to seek compensation for your child’s pain and suffering, physical impairment, disfigurement, loss of the enjoyment of life, impaired quality of life, and other non-economic losses up to a limit under California law.
Is a Bad Medical Result Always Malpractice?
Not always. Sometimes, accidents simply happen without medical providers or medical staff being careless. If you received substandard medical care that caused the injury to your baby, however, you might have grounds for a birth injury lawsuit.
We Can Help You Decide Your Next Steps in Your Family’s Birth Injury Medical Malpractice Case
We offer a free initial consultation with no obligation so you and your family can review legal remedies that may be available to you after the harm your child suffered. You can reach out to us today to get started.