What To Expect During A Birth Injury Lawsuit

If you think medical malpractice may have played a role in your child’s birth injury, you can seek compensation through a lawsuit. However, a legal case can be time-consuming and complicated.

Atlanta Birth Injury Attorneys can help you gather the evidence to prove your claim, file the lawsuit, conduct pre-trial discovery, negotiate a settlement or take the case to trial.

birth injury

Gathering Evidence

In many cases, your attorney will need to collect a great deal of evidence. This includes medical records from the mother’s pregnancy, childbirth and treatment afterwards, test results such as X-rays and MRI scans, statements and testimony from eyewitnesses, and other relevant information. The legal team will work to ensure this information is properly documented and organized in a manner that will be easily understood by a jury. In addition, the attorneys will often work with medical experts who can explain to the jury how the professional standard of care applies in a given situation and help them determine whether the defendant’s conduct deviated from that standard.

When enough proof is gathered, your legal team will file the claim with the appropriate court. You will become the plaintiff and the doctors and other health care providers you are suing will become defendants. The filing will also include a certificate of merit, which certifies that an expert in the medical specialty involved in the case has reviewed your claim and has offered an opinion that there is a reasonable probability that your child’s injuries were caused by the provider’s negligence.

Proving negligence requires demonstrating that your doctor owed you and your baby a duty of care, breached that duty, and that the breach directly caused the injury. This is known as “causation.” Proving causation can be complex and might require the testimony of experts in your case, as well as statements and testimony from eyewitnesses.

Once your attorney has filed the lawsuit, the legal process begins through a process of pre-trial discovery. This involves requesting documents and other information from the defendants and their attorneys. It may take from 6 months to over a year for this phase to conclude.

During this time, your lawyer may begin settlement negotiations with the defendants. The goal of these negotiations is to secure a lump sum of money that will pay for all damages. Approximately 95% of birth injury lawsuits settle before going to trial. Those that do go to trial are heard by a judge or jury who will determine if the defendants were responsible for your child’s injury and award you compensation.

Filing The Lawsuit

If your attorney determines that you have a viable lawsuit against the doctor or hospital responsible for your child’s birth injury, they will begin building the case. This includes examining medical records, conducting interviews with witnesses and more. Building your case will help your legal team prove that your child’s injuries were caused by a healthcare professional’s negligence during prenatal care, delivery or shortly after.

Once your lawyer has gathered sufficient evidence, they will file the lawsuit in court. This will make you the plaintiff and the doctors and hospitals you are suing the defendants. Once the lawsuit is filed, a notice will be sent to the defendants that gives them a set amount of time to respond.

During this discovery process, your lawyer may depose any witnesses you have named in the suit or medical experts hired to help build your case. This involves questioning them under oath about their interactions with you and your child. This can be a stressful and difficult step, but your lawyer will prepare you for this ahead of time.

After all the information has been gathered, your legal team will request money from the defendants to compensate you and your child for the injuries. This can be a lengthy process, as your legal team will fight for the highest possible payout to cover all future expenses related to your child’s birth injury.

In most cases, medical malpractice lawsuits settle before reaching trial. This is particularly true when the medical malpractice is due to a birth injury. Medical malpractice cases that go to trial tend to generate large verdicts, and doctors and hospitals are often reluctant to risk a high payout from a jury.

A settlement can also be less invasive and easier on the family than going to trial. Trials can be emotionally draining, stressful and expensive. In addition, a jury’s decision can have a major impact on your child’s quality of life, as it could change the way they live forever. It’s important to have your best advocate by your side throughout this entire process.

Negotiating A Settlement

After building a case, your attorney will file the lawsuit with the court in the county where the incident occurred. The parents become the plaintiffs while the doctors, hospitals and other medical professionals become the defendants. The lawsuit will have a case number and schedule assigned to it. During this time, both sides will engage in discovery. This involves exchanging information and deposing witnesses who will be asked to provide statements under oath. Your legal team will use discovery to find more evidence to support your claims of medical malpractice.

Once your legal team has enough proof that medical professionals failed to uphold a high standard of care, they will begin settlement negotiations with the defendants. Your attorney will fight to get a fair and substantial settlement for your family. Your legal team will take into account your economic damages — such as medical bills and lost wages — as well as your non-economic damages, such as emotional trauma and loss of enjoyment of life. In addition, your attorney may request punitive damages, which are intended to punish defendants for extreme negligence or reckless behavior.

During this process, your attorneys will work with expert witnesses to analyze your child’s injury and determine how the actions or inactions of the medical professionals contributed to the injury. This analysis is vital to proving your case and determining how much the defendants should pay in damages.

A trial can be risky and stressful for everyone involved, which is why many cases settle out of court. This allows both parties to avoid a long, drawn-out trial and a possible negative verdict from the jury or judge.

It is important to hire a birth injury attorney who has extensive experience in this area of law and in negotiating with insurance companies. Lawyers who have a background in medical malpractice are more familiar with the types of damages you will be entitled to receive for your injuries and are better positioned to prevent insurers from offering lowball offers that don’t take your child’s lifetime costs into account. The experienced birth injury lawyers can help you pursue the compensation you deserve for your child’s lifelong injuries and complications.

Going To Trial

When it comes to medical malpractice lawsuits, it is important to work with an attorney who is experienced in this type of law. Your attorney will evaluate your case for a potential claim and help you gather the necessary evidence to support your claims of medical malpractice. This will include reviewing your medical records, hiring expert witness to examine the evidence, and collecting firsthand accounts from you about what happened during your child’s birth.

The legal team will then build a case and work toward financial compensation. This will typically involve proving that your child suffered an injury due to medical negligence and that this injury caused significant, life-long harm to your child.

Once your lawyer has gathered all of the initial evidence, they will file a medical malpractice lawsuit with your local court. You will become the plaintiff in the case, and the doctors, hospitals and other medical professionals who are at fault will become defendants.

Depending on the state, some cases may require mediation or arbitration before going to trial. During this process, the attorneys will try to reach an out-of-court settlement. If a settlement is not reached, the case will proceed to trial.

The trial will usually last for several days. During this time, the jury will hear testimony from expert witnesses that are called by both sides. The experts will provide their opinions on what caused the child’s injuries and if the doctor acted reasonably under the circumstances. The jury will then decide if the doctor acted reasonably and whether or not their care was negligent.

There is no guaranteed time frame for how long it will take to go through the entire trial process. However, your attorney will move as quickly through the process as possible to ensure that you receive vital compensation for your child’s injuries. If you are interested in filing a birth injury lawsuit, contact the lawyers today for a free consultation. They charge no fees upfront and only get paid when they win your case. They are committed to helping you and your family obtain fair compensation for the long-term care your child needs due to a preventable birth injury.