The physical and mental distress of having your newborn infant suffer a birth injury is hard to comprehend. Considering the financial and legal challenges that often follow, it might be helpful to consider retaining a personal injury attorney. A compassionate and experienced Phoenix birth injury lawyer might be able help pursue compensation from a negligent doctor, nurse, or other medical professional.
A birth injury is an injury, suffered by an infant, that was caused during labor, delivery, or shortly after the delivery. Some injuries are easily treatable, while others could have long-term physical and mental effects.
The leading cause of birth injuries is medical negligence or medical malpractice. Medical malpractice occurs when a doctor fails to meet the standard of care that an ordinary, prudent, health care professional, with the same training and experience, located in the same community, would provide under similar circumstances. Some common examples of medical negligence could include failing to monitor the baby’s weight and position, not viewing ultrasound pictures, or failing to perform necessary tests.
For a birth injury claim to be successful, a plaintiff will need to clearly establish the defendant’s negligence. A Phoenix birth injury lawyer could hire an expert witness to establish what a reasonable expectation of care would be for a particular case and explain how the defendant failed to deliver that care.
Types of Injuries
Depending on the complications before and after labor, different types of birth injuries may occur. Common injuries may include:
In addition to successfully proving that medical malpractice has taken place and was the cause of the birth injuries, plaintiffs must also seek damages against a responsible party. These damages are divided into three classifications: general damages, special damages, and punitive damages.
General damages are damages that do not have a quantifiable monetary cost and mainly consist of mental and physical pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment of life, and loss of future earning capacity.
Special damages, on the other hand, include monetary losses as a result of the related injury. Special damages might include medical bills or lost wages. Special damages could be accounted for by presenting a certified copy of a medical bill or lost wage, but the exact practices of quantifying special damages may vary depending on the court and facts of the case.
Punitive damages may only be pursued under certain rare circumstances. Generally, birth injury plaintiffs in Phoenix may only seek punitive damages when the defendant’s conduct was carried out intentionally, a heightened standard that makes punitive damages challenging to attain.
Dealing with a legal claim is probably an afterthought when your infant experiences a birth injury. A Phoenix birth injury lawyer could review the circumstances of your case and help guide you through the legal process so that you can focus on healing and recovery. When you are ready, consider reaching out to an experienced attorney.