When your child suffers an injury during birth, you should consider legal help to determine what your next steps should be. It is important to note that just because your child suffered an injury, it does not mean that you have a strong case for medical error or negligence. A birth injury means that your child has a permanent disability as a result of complications that happened during birth that may or may not have been caused by a member of the medical staff. In addition to the injury occurring, it had to occur as a result of medical malpractice. For you to be able to pursue compensation there had to be negligence that caused the injury.

Your lawyer has to prove the four elements of malpractice when you file a lawsuit for a birth injury.

Duty

You must prove duty. Duty means that you had a relationship with the doctor and that doctor was responsible for your medical care during your labor and delivery.

Breach of Duty

You must prove a breach of duty. Your lawyer must prove that your doctor performed below the standard of care for you and your baby. To do this, you have to prove that a different doctor would have taken a different course of action in the same circumstances that caused the birth injury.

Damages & Harm

You must prove damages. You have to prove that there was actual harm caused to your baby and that harm is causing your child to be unable to meet the criteria for development. It is not enough to show that the doctor made a mistake, but that your child was injured by that mistake.

Causation

Lastly, you must prove causation. This means that the injury to your baby was caused directly by the actions, or lack of action, of the doctor.

Documentation for Malpractice Case

Your lawyer must gather specific documentation to prove the four elements of malpractice. This evidence includes all the medical records that show details of the mother’s treatment during pregnancy and delivery. This includes records of the injuries your baby sustained during birth and any care that your baby received as a result of the injury. Evidence presented in court may include the employment records for the person(s) named in the lawsuit. This includes any prior complaints about them. This may include statements from witnesses who assisted in delivering the baby. These witnesses may be medical professionals that were in the delivery room. Your lawyer may have experts take the stand or provide testimony. This may include nurses, doctors, life planners, and other experts.

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