Cerebral Palsy Lawyers
Parents might find it challenging to cope when their child receives a cerebral palsy diagnosis. Depending on the condition’s severity, a child might have manageable limitations or severe disabilities. Sometimes, the extent of the harm is not clear at first.
If a medical error led to the condition, your child could receive compensation from the medical professionals, hospital, or birthing center that mishandled the case. Reimbursement could help pay for treatment and supportive care to help your child reach their full potential.
Speak with a medical malpractice attorney as soon as you receive your child’s diagnosis. A cerebral palsy lawyer could evaluate your situation and determine whether pursuing a case for medical negligence is possible.
Reasons a Child Develops Cerebral Palsy
Cerebral palsy (CP) is a condition relating to abnormal brain development or brain injury. In most children, the damage occurs before or during birth. These children have congenital CP. In some cases, CP develops after birth and results from an injury such as a vehicle accident, fall, or abuse. The Centers for Disease Control identifies several risk factors that increase the chances of congenital CP, including:
Several of these conditions could be preventable or manageable with adequate medical treatment.
A parent could seek compensation when a medical professional causes a birth injury or fails to promptly diagnose or treat a condition that could cause congenital CP. A cerebral palsy lawyer could review the medical records documenting the pregnancy and birth to determine whether the mother and baby received an appropriate standard of care.
Determining When Medical Error Caused Congenital CP
Medical professionals, whether nurses, midwives, or physicians, must use the degree of knowledge, judgment, and skill that a similarly credentialed professional would have applied in the same circumstances. If they do not, they fail to meet an appropriate standard of care. A medical professional who does not meet this standard is negligent.
Not all birth injuries result from medical negligence. Sometimes, an action that could cause CP might be necessary to save the life of or prevent a more significant injury in the mother or baby. In other cases, a medical professional could have chosen a different option that might have caused less harm to the baby. In these latter cases, a parent could bring a suit on their injured child’s behalf.
Before a Cleveland attorney files a cerebral palsy lawsuit, Ohio Rules of Civil Procedure §10(D)(2) requires them to obtain an Affidavit of Merit from a qualified medical professional. The expert reviews the medical records and determines whether the mother and baby received an adequate standard of care. If the reviewer believes the care did not meet an appropriate standard and the failure resulted in an injury, the reviewer will sign the Affidavit of Merit.
Strict Timeframes Apply to Cerebral Palsy Actions
When a medical professional injures a child, the law allows the child until one year after their 18th birthday to file a lawsuit claiming damages for the harm. However, a delay is rarely beneficial. It is usually wiser for a parent to bring a malpractice action on behalf of an injured child.
In most cases, a parent who wishes to file a medical malpractice lawsuit on behalf of a child with a birth injury must do so within one year. However, a child might not receive a CP diagnosis until specific developmental delays are apparent, often around two to three. The law extends the time if the parent could not reasonably have known of the injury when it occurred. A lawyer could file a cerebral palsy lawsuit within one year of the parent learning of the injury but no more than four years after the medical error.
Trust a Cerebral Palsy Attorney with a Claim
If your infant has a cerebral palsy diagnosis, you might wonder how you will find the resources to provide him or her with the best treatment and care. You want your child to live to the fullest, but disability support is expensive.
Seeking monetary compensation from the medical professional whose substandard care led to your child’s injury is one possibility. Contact a cerebral palsy lawyer today to explore your legal options.