If your child has suffered a birth injury, such as cerebral palsy or brain damage, your mind is likely racing with questions: How will I pay for my child’s long-term care? What caused this to happen? Was my child the victim of medical malpractice, and if so, how do I hold the doctor or hospital liable for the costs?
Birth injury cases are among the most complex areas of medical malpractice law, but you’re not alone in this fight. Skilled Toronto birth injury lawyers understand the financial, emotional and physical ramifications of a birth injury caused by medical negligence. Our catastrophic injury lawyers will work with you and your family to pursue injury compensation to address associated costs.
How a Birth Injury Can Happen
Birth injuries can occur before, during or just after delivery. Some conditions that may be attributed to birth injury and trauma include:
- Cerebral palsy
- Shoulder dystocia
- Skull injuries
- Brachial plexus (including Erb’s palsy and Klumpke’s palsy)
- Caput succedaneum
- Facial paralysis
While some injuries (such as bruising and minor nerve damage) can heal in time, others — such as cerebral palsy — could mean a lifetime of specialized medical care. As the parent of a child with a birth injury, you have resources available to you to help provide the best care possible for your child. Our birth injury lawyers in Toronto will take the time to understand the nature of your child’s injuries. We can discuss whether injury compensation is available to aid you and your family on the road to recovery.
Investigating the Injury
A number of factors may contribute to birth injury and trauma. Some of these — such as premature labor or a baby’s large size — are difficult to anticipate or control.
Other factors are caused by doctor or hospital negligence, including when baby doesn’t receive enough oxygen during delivery or a necessary Cesarean section is delayed. And while some babies experience minor injuries resulting from use of an assistive birthing devices (like vacuum extractors or forceps), improper use could lead to more serious injuries for which the doctor could be liable.
Our Toronto birth injury lawyers will investigate the details of your case to help determine what caused your child’s injury. This means:
- Obtaining and analyzing medical and hospital records
- Conducting witness interviews
- Constructing a timeline of events
Our birth injury lawyers consult with medical experts when necessary to better understand what led to your child’s birth trauma and injury.
Determining Liability in a Toronto Birth Injury Case
There may be a number of parties who are liable for your child’s injury:
- The obstetrician
- Obstetric nurses
- Delivery room staff
- Hospital staff
- Pharmacist (in the event an incorrect prescription drug was given during pregnancy)
- The doctor(s) who provided pre-natal care (particularly relevant when he or she failed to provide adequate preventative care or to reasonably anticipate a problem with the developing fetus)
Parents of an injured child should obtain the legal counsel of a lawyer specializing in medical malpractice. There is a great deal of complexity involved in establishing the causation necessary to link any injury or harm that the child has suffered to any kind of medical malpractice during a child’s gestation or the delivery process.
Legal action will be available at the point where a birth injury lawyer is confident that causation can be established to prove liability in the case. Usually, in cases of birth injuries, a lawyer will not want to sue immediately because they want to see how the injury or harm is manifesting during the early years of the child’s life, while the running of the statutory limitation period is stayed.
Contacting a Toronto Birth Injury Lawyer
Sometimes, a cognitive difficulty that a parent may feel is attributable to some sort of medical negligence or malpractice on the part of a doctor may just be a normal part of that child’s development. But on the other hand, sometimes symptoms of harm from an injury sustained during childbirth may not emerge fully until much later in the child’s life.
Because the limitation period does not begin to run until the child reaches the age of majority, there may be up to 18 years to figure out exactly how the harm or injury is going to manifest itself in the child’s life — not just while they are a minor but also over the course of the child’s adult life.
A good Toronto birth injury lawyer will typically want to act only when there is complete information available, which may take time in terms of the child undergoing various testing and evaluation to try to understand what harms that child has sustained that may have been caused by medical malpractice. Contact Preszler Law Firm today to get started with a free consultation.