Birth Injury Attorneys in Ohio
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Ohio Birth Injury Attorneys
Becoming a new parent is one of the most joyful experiences in life. Once a family knows they’re expecting an infant, they’re likely thrilled beyond belief. A newborn baby brings the potential for shared experiences, new milestones, and excitement. When it comes time to give birth, parents are typically delighted to meet their new family member.
However, occasionally, medical professionals don’t adhere to proper standards of care when delivering a new child. Improper deliveries can result in debilitating birth injuries that may be fatal or cause long-term developmental damage. When a birth injury occurs, it’s devastating to parents who were expecting a child they could raise through adulthood without medical complications.
If you’re a new parent of a baby who suffered injuries during childbirth, you may be able to obtain financial compensation for your child’s medical expenses and disability. Birth injury attorneys in Ohio at Morgan & Morgan can help you in your lawsuit. Contact us today to schedule a free case review.
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Frequency of Birth Injuries
According to the National Center for Biotechnology Information, birth injuries occur in 1.9 of every 1,000 births. However, other organizations believe birth injuries happen more often—in as many as 8 out of every 1,000 births.
The most common injuries involve damage to the newborn’s head, neck, and shoulders. Birth injuries can result in short-term or long-term trauma. Some newborns who sustain birth injuries require significant medical care and treatment.
Approximately 1 in every 9,714 babies born in the U.S. sustain a birth injury. Birth injuries increase among pregnant women who require tools to deliver their babies, such as forceps or vacuums.
Lower rates of birth injuries occur at for-profit, private hospitals. In contrast, non-profit hospitals see the highest rates of birth injuries—approximately 7.15 of every 1,000 births.
While any newborn may experience a birth injury, the frequency of birth injuries increases among White and Asian-Pacific Islanders and those born in the Northeast.
Most Common Types of Birth Injuries
Birth injuries vary in severity. Some of the most common types of birth injuries include:
A newborn’s skull is not fully developed and remains very soft for several months following delivery. A skull fracture may occur if the treating physician uses forceps, a vacuum, or other tools to encourage the baby through the birth canal. In rare cases, a doctor or nurse may drop the newborn shortly following birth, resulting in a fracture.
Skull fractures can result in severe medical complications, including seizures, stroke, and brain damage. In the worst cases, a skull fracture is fatal.
The brachial plexus comprises nerve fibers that extend from a person’s spinal cord to their arms. Usually, brachial plexus injuries in infants occur during a forced delivery, when the physician pulls too hard on the new infant or uses forceps. Babies who suffer brachial plexus birth injuries may experience problems in development, including difficulties lifting their arms.
Cerebral palsy is a severe birth injury that may result in permanent brain damage or paralysis. Babies who have cerebral palsy often require lifelong treatment to manage their symptoms. As the child grows, other brain conditions may develop, including epilepsy or intellectual disabilities. While treatments are available to help manage symptoms, they are often costly, and their effectiveness differs.
Newborns have very fragile bones that are susceptible to breaks during delivery. According to a 2022 StatPearls publication, the most common fractures during delivery include collarbones, arms, and neck bones. Treatment can vary, and some children will have deformities associated with broken bones during delivery.
Hypoxic Ischemic Encephalopathy
Hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy (HIE) can occur during prolonged labor or forced delivery. Babies with HIE don’t receive enough oxygen in their brains. As a result, they may develop certain conditions or incur brain damage. Sometimes, HIE is treatable in the weeks following delivery. Other babies will sustain lifelong consequences of their brain damage.
When to Hire Birth Injury Attorneys in Ohio
Hiring birth injury attorneys in Ohio is essential to obtain financial compensation to provide medical care for a newborn injured during birth. The costs of treating an infant for a birth injury can be astronomical, especially if the child will need lifelong care.
When a new parent arrives at a hospital to give birth to their new baby, they expect the hospital, physicians, and nurses to provide them with a reasonable standard of care. They anticipate delivering a healthy baby, free from injury or debilitating conditions.
Problems arise when medical professionals don’t provide the appropriate level of care during labor and delivery. Childbirth mistakes can be costly and alter a parent and child’s quality of life for years to come.
While hiring a lawyer won’t change your circumstances, a lawsuit can provide you with financial compensation for future medical care and treatments. If your child needs long-term assistance from medical professionals due to their birth injury, you can rest easy knowing that you can provide them with the best there is to offer, given their condition.
What Birth Injury Attorneys in Ohio Do
Birth injury attorneys work to make medical professionals pay for the life-altering mistakes they make. When you hire an attorney at Morgan & Morgan, you’ll obtain a qualified lawyer who will develop your case from end-to-end.
We begin by establishing the facts and circumstances of the injury to your infant. We’ll evaluate the causes of the birth injury and discuss the matter with medical experts who can provide additional credibility to your case.
Once we determine the root cause of the birth injury, we’ll establish the probability of full recovery for your infant and the cost of their care. If the injury results in lifelong damage, we’ll evaluate the medical treatment needed to manage their conditions.
We’ll also work to connect the negligence of the medical facility and its professionals to your newborn’s birth injuries.
When we fully develop your claim, we’ll file a lawsuit and fight on your behalf to obtain the compensation you need for your infant’s care.
Proving Liability in a Birth Injury Case
There are four steps to proving liability in a birth injury case. They include establishing a duty of care, determining negligence, evaluating causation, and proving damages.
Duty of Care
A duty of care exists between every medical professional and their patient. A duty of care is created as soon as a mother walks into a hospital to give birth. The duty of care assumes that medical professionals will act as other doctors in a similar position would behave.
Doctors and nurses cannot shirk their responsibilities to a patient. They must act in accordance with reasonable medical practices to ensure that you and your infant receive quality care during childbirth.
Negligence occurs when doctors or other medical professionals fail to exert the appropriate duty of care. Mistakes like forcing vaginal delivery during difficult childbirth can result in lifelong injuries. Your attorney will work with medical experts to determine whether your doctor failed to behave according to professional standards.
Birth injury attorneys in Ohio must establish a direct link between the doctor’s negligence and the birth injury your infant suffered. Misusing delivery tools can easily lead to birth injuries, as can failure to care for your infant properly following delivery.
Morgan and Morgan will work to directly link the doctor or nurse’s negligence to your child’s birth injury.
There can be no lawsuit without physical injuries or damage. There might be no long-term repercussions if your baby suffered a mild injury during childbirth. However, newborns who experience severe injuries may need months or years of specialized treatment to recover from or mitigate their conditions.
Skilled birth injury attorneys in Ohio can help you establish the cost of your infant’s past and future medical care. We’ll determine how much compensation is necessary for your case.
How Much Will It Cost to Hire a Birth Injury Attorney?
Morgan & Morgan offers free consultations for all of our clients. We want to ensure that you feel comfortable hiring us as your attorneys. During your consultation, we’ll discuss the facts of your case and determine the best way to proceed.
If we negotiate a successful settlement or obtain a court verdict on your behalf, we’ll receive a percentage of the award as payment for our services. You'll owe us nothing for our legal representation if we do not obtain any money from the defendants.
No fees are due upfront or during the course of the case. We only receive payment upon a successful resolution for you.
How Long Do I Have to File a Birth Injury Case in Ohio?
Three statutes of limitations apply in birth injury cases.
Parents of an injured child may bring a medical malpractice claim within one year of a birth injury. If you are a parent and want financial compensation for your child’s current and future medical treatment, you’ll want to seek legal assistance quickly to comply with the law.
If the birth injury resulted in the death of your child, you might bring a wrongful death case against your newborn’s physician. Parents must file wrongful death claims within two years of the child's death.
Finally, children themselves may bring a medical malpractice claim against their delivery doctors or physicians. However, they may not do so until they become legally competent at age 18. The statute of limitations for children injured during childbirth is 19 years in Ohio.
What Kind of Compensation Can I Obtain in a Birth Injury Case?
Parents of newborns and infants who sustain birth injuries may obtain remuneration for their children’s past and future medical care, including hospital costs, occupational and physical therapy, and long-term medical assistance. They may also receive compensation for the emotional anguish associated with their child’s birth injury.
In cases of extreme negligence, a court may award punitive damages to the parents for their child's injuries.
Sometimes, parents file a lawsuit for the wrongful death of a newborn or child who sustained a birth injury. Parents who file wrongful death claims may recover funeral and burial expenses and compensation for pain and suffering.
An attorney at Morgan & Morgan can help you determine the damages you may be entitled to receive.
Call Morgan & Morgan, Dedicated Birth Injury Attorneys in Ohio
Morgan and Morgan is the nation’s largest personal injury law firm. We have offices in Cincinnati and Columbus, Ohio, and our skilled attorneys can help you pursue compensation for your newborn’s birth injuries. Contact us today to schedule a free case review. We’ll fight on your behalf for the money you need to care for your injured child.