You and your family have been waiting for months to welcome your baby. By all rights, you expected the birth to be safe and medically correct. If you’re reading this, we’re sorry that you or someone you love has been injured during birth. There are few times in life more devastating than putting your future on hold because of a birth injury.
We can’t instantly make it better. As personal injury lawyers in Atlanta, however, John Foy & Associates can make sure you are compensated for your injuries so that you can receive necessary medical care, even if it’s for long-term treatment.
Causes of Birth Injuries
Anything can go wrong during the delivery process. In fact, sometimes, it’s not even the fault of the caregiver who is treating you–equipment manufacturers or even the hospital itself may be liable.
Some of the common causes of birth injury include:
- Failure to notice changes in the baby’s or mother’s condition
- Failure to bring in a specialist
- Untreated maternal infection
- Failure to diagnose or treat a labor complication
- Failure or delay in ordering a caesarian section
- The improper use of forceps or suction during delivery
No matter what caused your birth injury, as long as it was due to negligence, you may have a claim. You can talk to a birth injury lawyer in Atlanta who will evaluate your situation and tell you what your options are.
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Types of Birth Injuries an Attorney in Atlanta Can File a Claim for
Serious birth injuries have dropped dramatically in the last decades because of improved medical care and prenatal assessments. And many injuries that occur at birth are easily resolved without treatment. That said, serious injuries do still occur, including:
- Bleeding in the baby’s brain
- Nerve injury, including nerve paralysis
- Broken bones
- Loss of oxygen, resulting in damage to the organs, especially the brain and kidneys
- Cerebral palsy
- Erb’s palsy
- Spinal cord injury
- Internal bleeding
- Umbilical cord strangulation
If you’re not sure whether your child’s injury is eligible for a malpractice claim, you can always ask one of our personal injury attorneys. As long as you have experienced damages due to the negligence of someone else, there’s always a chance that you can recover compensation.
Average Child Birth Injury Settlement in Atlanta
Medical malpractice settlements vary widely in size, so it’s hard to give an average number that tells you how much you might get. Because birth injury cases involve infants who can be expensive to treat, settlements do tend to be higher than compensation for other personal injury claims.
Your settlement will ultimately depend on the damages you suffered because of malpractice. Compensation in birth injury cases often falls in the hundreds of thousands of dollars, sometimes even reaching the millions. However, your payment may be less or more depending on the extent of your and your child’s injuries.
A good way to find out how much compensation you may be facing is to talk to an Atlanta birth injury attorney. We offer free consultations to victims of birth injuries, so don’t hesitate to get in touch about your case. A member of our team will be able to talk to you one-on-one to give an estimate.
Damages You Can Seek in a Birth Injury Case
As in all personal injury claims, you are eligible for three kinds of compensation. Mother and child are eligible for all necessary medical costs, including future treatment.
The baby, especially, may need treatment and support for the rest of his or her life. The mother is eligible for any wages she has lost because of the birth injury. And both are eligible for pain and suffering costs.
In the tragic case of a death resulting from birth injuries, the proper family members can file a wrongful death claim. You can contact an Atlanta birth injury attorney to discuss your case for free. You’re not obligated to use us if we talk.
Economic damages have a monetary worth. Examples include:
- Lost wages
- Reduced earning capacity
- Current medical expenses
- Costs of future medical care
- Costs of increased health insurance premiums
Non-economic damages are not financial and encompass how your life and your child’s life has been affected by their birth injuries. Some examples of non-economic damages include:
- Pain and suffering
- Diminished quality of life
- Emotional trauma and distress
- Loss of consortium
- Disfigurement or skin scarring
Negligent Parties in a Birth Injury Case
There are multiple parties who could be found liable for causing birth injuries at healthcare facilities across Atlanta. Some of the parties named in claims of this nature include:
- Midwives and certified nurse midwives
- Nurses and nursing assistants
- Other healthcare providers offering prenatal and postnatal care
Atlanta’s Deadline for Birth Injury Lawsuits
Every malpractice case is subject to the statute of limitations, which is the deadline to file a legal claim for compensation. In Georgia, the statute of limitations for a birth injury case is technically two years.
However, since the clock doesn’t start running for the statute of limitations until a child’s fifth birthday, the deadline is actually seven years, according to the Official Code of Georgia Annotated §9-3-73.
Seven years might seem like a long time, but it’s best to get started on your claim with a birth injury lawyer in Atlanta as soon as possible. The longer you wait, the less likely you are to get full compensation for your birth injury.
What to Do If Your Child Was Injured During Delivery
First, we are very sorry for your baby’s injury. There is nothing harder than watching your helpless newborn suffer. The first thing you should always do after a birth injury is to make sure you and your child are getting the care that you need.
There are also some steps that you can take that may help your chances of getting compensation for your child’s injuries. If your baby was injured during delivery, you should:
- Make sure you know the names of everyone who treated you during your child’s birth
- Write down your account of events as soon as possible, and if there was anyone else present that you trust, have them write down what they remember as well
- If the hospital’s insurance company or lawyers try to contact you, only tell them what they absolutely need to know
- Do not sign anything until you have an Atlanta burn injury lawyer present
- Contact an attorney who can help as soon as possible
We can’t take away the physical pain, but we can help. While you and your baby get medical treatment, we can pursue a personal injury claim to pay for necessary costs. And if there was any way to prevent this injury, we want to make sure it won’t happen to another family.
Can a Lawyer Hire a Medical Expert to Prove My Claim?
Most people don’t have the resources necessary to hire medical experts. That’s why you retain a personal injury attorney. John Foy & Associates has been in Atlanta for more than 20 years. We have long, established ties with medical experts who can clinically examine your case.
We are close to the Atlanta medical community, including professionals who will care for our clients and wait for payment until there is a successful settlement.
We employ the medical experts – you do not. And because we’re a large, established firm, we have the resources to hire the best people. We’re in no rush to settle.
Can a Lawyer Help Get Medical Care After a Birth Injury?
Our Atlanta birth injury attorneys can help you maneuver the complicated medical path of getting care for your baby’s birth injury. We are Atlanta citizens with deep ties to our medical neighbors. We have experience with these sorts of cases and we know where to turn.
In addition, we urge you to get the state resources you are already paying for in the Georgia Dept. of Public Health’s Babies Can’t Wait program for newborns to age 3. This program has an array of services to help special needs babies. This program is available to all residents, even if you have the resources to pay for private services.
Talk to a Birth Injury Attorney in Atlanta Today
The Atlanta birth injury attorneys at John Foy & Associates are dedicated to being part of the community and to helping those who can’t help themselves. We have more than 20 attorneys and almost 100 staff members who have years of experience fighting birth injury claims.
Your baby needs ethical, honest representation. You need legal advice so that your child can get the necessary care, even if it’s for a lifetime of care. You only have one chance to pursue a settlement for your child. Give us a call or contact us online for a free, private consultation.