Congenital cerebral palsy is caused by the abnormal development of the brain or when there is damage to the developing brain. Between 85 and 90 percent of CP cases are congenital.
The other 10-15 percent is the result of acquired CP, which is when brain damage that occurs more than 28 days after a child is born, causing CP.
In both cases, it’s possible that medical error resulted in your child’s diagnosis. If a doctor or medical staffer made a mistake that resulted in your child’s CP, you may have a cerebral palsy lawsuit.
Taking care of a child with CP can be expensive. Medical care, therapy, and rehab bills stack up.
If you believe that medical malpractice resulted in your child’s diagnosis, a cerebral palsy lawsuit can help you get the compensation you deserve. Read on to learn if you have a case, and what to do next.
Could Your Doctor Be Responsible?
Cerebral palsy is a brain injury, and in theory, all injuries are preventable. But the exact cause of a case of cerebral palsy can be difficult to pin down. Sometimes the conditions of pregnancy can cause cerebral palsy, while other times it could be the result of something your medical team did or didn’t do.
For example, if your baby’s brain didn’t get enough oxygen during birth, medical malpractice could be the reason why.
Similarly, your medical team may have been aware of conditions of your pregnancy or delivery that increased your child’s risk of SP. If they were and failed to respond appropriately to such conditions, they may be liable for your child’s diagnosis.
Only an expert team, such as an experienced cerebral palsy lawyer, will truly be able to help you determine if your doctor or medical staff could be at fault. Still, if you even suspect malpractice, it is worth interviewing as many witnesses as possible.
Other eyewitnesses may be able to remember additional details of your doctor’s behavior. The can help you put together a clear picture of what might have happened to result in your child’s case of CP.
What To Do Before Filing a Cerebral Palsy Lawsuit
A cerebral palsy lawsuit can be complicated, so it is essential to be as prepared as possible for what filing one entails.
As with most lawsuits, timing is everything. Cerebral palsy malpractice lawsuits have a statue of limitations, and once that time is expired, you are no longer able to file.
In New York, the statute of limitations is two and a half years from the time of the injury that led to the disorder. So, if the injury occurred during your child’s birth, you have until your child is two and a half years old to file your lawsuit.
When you’re dealing with a disorder like cerebral palsy, preparing for a lawsuit may seem like the last thing you want to do. But it’s important that you don’t miss your window of opportunity to get you and your family the compensation you deserve.
The more information you can share with your lawyer, the more prepared they’ll be to fight your case.
Before you file, take the time to collect any medical records and documentation related to your child’s diagnosis and care. This can include appointment records, to therapy and rehab notes to prescriptions.
Don’t waste your time trying to decide what is relevant and what isn’t. Always err on the side of providing your lawyer with as much information as possible, and let them sort through it.
What Happens After Filing
A cerebral palsy lawsuit takes time, so you should be aware from the beginning that there won’t be a quick resolution. Knowing more about the steps of the process can help.
In New York, it is necessary for all medical malpractice cases to be verified by a physician before they can be filed. This certificate of merit is a signal to the court from a doctor that medical malpractice probably took place.
Because this certificate of merit is so crucial to a cerebral palsy lawsuit moving forward, it is essential that you have a determined legal team on your side. Lawyers with experience and familiarity with the process are your best advocates in passing this first stage.
You should know, though, that even if you have a medical malpractice case, it may not go to trial. Many of these can be settled out of court so that you get the compensation you deserve.
Why Should You File?
Filing a cerebral palsy lawsuit may seem like a long, complicated process. When you are also raising a child with CP and navigating a new lifestyle, you may feel like you don’t have the time or energy that a lawsuit requires.
That’s a perfectly understandable feeling, but winning a medical malpractice lawsuit can provide you with some relief. A financial settlement can help offset the cost of medical bills, therapies, and wages lost as a result of your child’s diagnosis.
It can also provide you with some peace of mind in knowing that someone is being held responsible for their actions. If a doctor or medical team member made an error that resulted in your child’s case of CP, they should face the consequences of that.
Our dedicated and experienced team of lawyers is available to help you with every step of the process so that it impedes on your life as little as possible. You should get the compensation you deserve. Our team is ready to do the hard work necessary to make that happen.
Ready to File A Cerebral Palsy Lawsuit?
Because of the statute of limitations, if you think you have a cerebral palsy lawsuit, the sooner you decide to file the better. A diagnosis of cerebral palsy changes your life and your child’s life. If you are due compensation, you should have a team willing to fight for you to get it.
For more information about our services or to schedule a free consultation with one of our lawyers, please contact us today.