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My Child Has Cerebral Palsy. Can I Sue?

pregnant woman holding a clock

When an infant is diagnosed with cerebral palsy, it can be devastating to the new parents. Cerebral palsy is a sort of umbrella term that covers a number of disorders that were caused by a lack of oxygen flow to the infant’s brain in the womb, during delivery or immediately after birth. It can also be caused by some type of injury sustained during delivery.

In some cases, it is impossible to tell when the injury occurred. In other cases, it is very clear that the lack of oxygen was the direct result of a medical mistake. When cerebral palsy, or any other birth injury, is caused by a mistake or negligence on the part of a medical professional, that professional may be held legally liable.

In order to be successful in court, a parent must prove four main elements. Continue reading to discover what those elements are.

Duty

The first element to be proven in a successful medical malpractice case is duty. That is, a doctor, nurse or hospital had the legal duty to provide a certain standard of care to your baby. This is an easy element to prove. As soon a medical professional agrees to provide care, they have accepted the standards that go along with that care.

Breach

Next, a victim must prove that a medical professional failed to provide the standard of care that another professional would have provided in a similar situation. This is often proven by questioning expert witnesses, or those people employed in the same field as the medical provider who allegedly caused the injury to your infant.

Causation

It is not enough to show that your child has cerebral palsy. There must be a provable link between the medical error or negligence and the cerebral palsy. For example, if the doctor failed to recognize a problem or remedy the problem during delivery or birth, that is proof of causation.

Damages

Lastly, you must be able to prove that your child has cerebral palsy. If a doctor accepted the standard of care and breached that standard, there is no claim if there was no resultant injury. Further, you will need to, again, prove that the injury was a direct result of error or negligence on the part of the medical staff.

Cerebral palsy is an incurable condition that can require a lifetime of medical care, specialized education and more. If your child was diagnosed with cerebral palsy after birth, you may be able to make a claim for compensation. A personal injury attorney will be able to advise you as to your best course of action.

If your child has been diagnosed with cerebral palsy in Charleston, you have options available to you. Call our offices today for a free case evaluation. We will meet with you, and your family, to discuss the details of your medical event. Once we have had time to discuss your case, we will be better able to advise you of your available options. Call now or browse our website for more information about our firm and the types of cases we handle.