The anticipation and happiness of welcoming a new child into the world can surpass all other milestones in life. However, a time that’s often filled with joy and hope can quickly turn to feelings of guilt and depression after a diagnosis of cerebral palsy. Every parent wants the best for their child; Nonetheless, the emotional exhaustion and mounting medical costs can weigh down even the strongest family unit. If your child has cerebral palsy, you have the legal right to file a claim for compensation against whatever party was negligent during the birth of your child.
Cerebral palsy is not hereditary, and there is no doubt that human error can be a contributing factor to cerebral palsy. It is your lawyer’s responsibility to lead the investigation, on your behalf, to find the negligent party, or parties, and hold them accountable for their actions.
Do I qualify for a cerebral palsy compensation claim?
Your lawyer must take several steps for you to qualify for a cerebral palsy compensation claim. To start, it is instrumental that the responsible party had a medical relationship with you before the negligence occurred. They do not need to be your primary caregiver, but there does need to be an established medical relationship.
You must then be able to prove that the negligence caused cerebral palsy. This can be tricky, which is why it’s beneficial to have a lawyer experienced in medical malpractice and with birth injury-related compensation claims in particular.
The statute of limitations can fluctuate between states and the law of the state that you gave birth in will apply to your case. In Washington D.C., a three-year statute of limitations (from the time of delivery) applies to a cerebral palsy compensation claim; However, this statute of limitations does not apply for minors under the age of eighteen.
What types of compensation are there for cerebral palsy?
According to a DC Birth Injury Lawyer, the amount that a plaintiff may be entitled to in a cerebral palsy compensation widely varies. There are various factors to review, including the severity of your child’s cerebral palsy, and the impact that their special needs may have on your family financially. The amount that you may be awarded depends on the state in which your child’s birth occurred, since non-economic damages (such as pain and suffering) are allowed in some states and not in others. Moreover, some states have a cap for the compensation that can be distributed; However, Washington D.C. does not restrict the amount that can be awarded for non-economic damages. Reasons may include:
- Loss of parental wages
- Pain and suffering
- Past, present and future medical expenses
- Past, present and future therapy and rehabilitation expenses
- Fees relating to special education
- Costs for upgrading your home to be suit a family with special needs
- Costs for specialized equipment such as a wheelchair accessible vehicle
- Counseling expenses
Determining whether your child’s cerebral palsy is congenital or acquired will be critical in developing your case. In order for your case to be successful, it is important to find a team of experienced birth injury lawyers. Keep your child’s well-being in mind and see if you meet the requirements for compensation.