Boston Birth Injury Lawyers
An injury at birth can forever change a child’s life from the very first breath he or she takes. Any error made during a pregnancy or delivery can have devastating consequences.
The Boston birth injury lawyers at Janet, Jenner & Suggs are accomplished in representing families whose newborn was injured because of a negligent medical professional. We are nationally recognized for our work with birth injury victims and have recovered more than $1 billion in verdicts and settlements, many in record-breaking amounts, on behalf of injury victims, including a $33.5 million verdict in a case involving a delayed C-section. We understand the unique challenges you face and are committed to fighting for the justice and maximum compensation you deserve for your child’s suffering. We will work to help make sure you have a secure future to care for a child with a birth injury. Contact us today to schedule a free, no obligation consultation.
Call 1-877-692-3862 today. We do not get paid unless you do.
Causes of Birth Injuries
Birth injuries are a type of medical malpractice that occurs when a medical professional fails to uphold the standard of care required by the medical industry.
This can include failing to act in an appropriate way, failing to act at all or making the wrong decision based on the information provided. This can include:
- Failing to diagnose fetal distress or other emergency situations
- Failing to perform a C-section in a timely manner
- Failing to order appropriate tests
- Misreading test results
- Failing to act on test results
- Negligent fetal monitoring
- Excessive force during delivery
- Lack of oxygen for the fetus
- Improper use of medical tools during delivery
- Failing to identify and manage signs and symptoms of infection
- Mismanagement of labor and delivery
Medical professionals are responsible for the health and care of a newborn from the moment of conception through the birthing process. Any error made during this time can have catastrophic consequences and lead to a serious birth injury.
Our Boston birth injury lawyers can help you hold the negligent party accountable for the harm caused to your child.
Common Birth Injuries
The Boston birth injury lawyers at Janet, Jenner & Suggs have been representing birth injury victims for more than 30 years. During that time, we have seen firsthand the tragic effects of a wide variety of birth injuries. Some of the most common injuries from negligence include:
Cerebral palsy occurs when the part of a newborn’s brain that controls motor skills and coordination is harmed. In each of the many cases our Boston cerebral palsy lawyers have handled, this injury was caused by negligence during pregnancy or delivery.
This type of injury significantly impacts the child’s ability to walk, talk, eat or hold things. This injury will affect a child for the rest of his or her life, and in some cases, will worsen as the child become older.
In addition to fighting for the rights of cerebral palsy victims in the courtroom, Janet, Jenner & Suggs helped create the CP Family Network, a vital resource for families whose children have suffered cerebral palsy injuries.
Erb’s Palsy and Brachial Plexus
Erb’s palsy, also known as brachial plexus, occurs when the nerves in the shoulder and neck are stretched, moved, damaged or broken during labor and delivery. This most often occurs when the infant has been unnaturally pulled or tugged or if too much force was used during delivery.
Common signs of this injury include an inability to move the arm or shoulder, the arm bending toward the body, weakness in the arm, poor or no reflexes to touch on the arm, loss of feeling in the arm, decreased grip and pain.
This type of injury must be diagnosed as soon as possible so the child can receive the appropriate treatment and attempt to begin to heal.
Facial paralysis is the loss of control of muscle movement in an infant’s face because of pressure on facial nerves, which usually occurs just before or at the time of birth. This type of injury usually occurs during a difficult labor and delivery and can occur whether forceps are used or not.
Shoulder dystocia occurs when the child’s head is delivered through a traditional birth, but the shoulders get stuck inside the mother’s body behind the pelvic bone. If the situation is not addressed quickly, the child will not be able to get enough oxygen. This can cause injury to the child and the mother.
Spinal Cord Damage
A spinal cord injury during childbirth can be caused by a difficult birth, rotational stresses on the spine, excessive force on the spine during delivery, brachial plexus damage to the spinal cord and nerves, and hyperextension of the head in abnormal birthing positions.
According to the Boston Children’s Hospital, 60 to 70 percent of all spinal cord injuries to children occur in the neck area. These types of injuries can range from a bruise to the spinal cord to it being completely severed.
Lasting effects from a spinal cord injury can cause paralysis, or loss of movement in the limbs. It can also lead to intellectual disabilities and even death.
Brain damage is a serious and lasting injury that can occur because of oxygen deprivation, lack of blood to the brain, physical trauma from labor and delivery, and infections. It can cause a broad range of complications, including neurological and physical problems. Some injuries can be life-changing and can lead to death.
Eclampsia or Pre-eclampsia
Eclampsia is a condition that causes a pregnant woman to develop seizures or a coma. Eclampsia usually develops after pre-eclampsia, which involves rapid weight gain, high blood pressure and excess protein in the urine.
A delayed or failure to diagnose eclampsia can lead to a still birth, premature delivery, or serious injuries to both the mother and child.
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Do I Have a Case?
When determining if you have a case, our Boston birth injury lawyers will consider the circumstances and evidence surrounding your claim. Most importantly, we must be able to demonstrate through documented proof that your child’s birth injury was a direct result of the negligence of a medical professional.
To do this, we must provide evidence of the four key elements of a negligence case:
- Duty of care – Your obstetrics and gynecologist (OBGYN), as well as the other medical professionals involved in your pregnancy and delivery, has a duty to provide you with a level of care that meets the standards of the medical community.
- Breach of duty of care – If a medical professional fails to act within his or her duty of care, he or she can be held liable for any injuries that result. A breach of duty of care can include failing to act in a way that another professional with similar training would have under the same circumstances.
- Causation – We must be able to demonstrate that your child’s birth injury was a direct result of the medical professional’s breach of duty of care.
- Damages – Your child’s injuries must have resulted in damages, including economic, like bills and expenses, as well as noneconomic, like pain and suffering.
Our Boston birth injury lawyers understand that not every birth is easy and straight forward. However, this is no excuse for an injury to a child, as it is the medical professional’s responsibility to be prepared to handle any situation that occurs during your pregnancy or labor and delivery. Any form of negligence can cause devastating injuries and could be grounds to file a personal injury lawsuit.
Find out if you have a case. Call 1-877-692-3862.
How Long Do I Have to File a Case?
Mass. Gen. Laws ch. 260, § 4 sets a strict three-year deadline for filing a medical malpractice lawsuit. If this deadline passes, you will not be able to bring a claim.
However, there is a special exception for children under the age of six. Young children who have been injured because of medical negligence have until his or her ninth birthday to file a lawsuit.
In addition to the statutes of limitations, there are several steps that must be taken in Massachusetts to file a medical malpractice lawsuit.
First, Mass. Gen. Laws ch. 231, § 60L requires that your provide the at-fault party (defendant) with 182 days’ notice that you intend to file a lawsuit. The defendant then has 150 days to respond. If during that time the defendant indicates that it does not intend to settle the claim or if the 150 days expires, our Boston birth injury lawyers can proceed with filing the lawsuit by submitting a claim with the court.
Before your case moves into the judicial process, a medical malpractice tribunal must review the details of the claim to determine if there is enough evidence to move forward with a lawsuit.
If the tribunal sides with the victim, the case can move forward. If the tribunal agrees with the defendant, the victim will have to file a $6,000 bond in order for the case to move forward. If the bond is not posted within 30 days, the case is dismissed.
Because there are many deadlines and requirements for filing a medical malpractice lawsuit in Massachusetts, it is vital that you contact our Boston birth injury lawyers immediately after discovering that your child may have suffered from a birth injury.
Do not hesitate to contact our birth injury attorneys.
Why Hire Our Boston Birth Injury Lawyers?
The sooner you contact our Boston birth injury lawyers, the sooner our team can begin investigating your claim and gathering evidence.
With former nurses and doctors on our staff, Janet, Jenner & Suggs has a deep understanding of the laws regulating medical care and the legal requirements for filing a lawsuit. We are also experienced negotiators and litigators who will settle for nothing less than what our clients deserve.
For more than three decades we have fought for the rights of birth injury victims in the courtroom. Some of our more notable birth injury case results include:
- $18,126,000 verdict in a case in which a child developed spastic quadriplegic cerebral palsy because the mother was taken off continuous fetal monitoring despite high risks.
- $8.25 million recovery for a child who suffered brain damage after medical professionals failed to properly respond to an airway obstruction.
- $4.25 million recovery in a case involving a newborn’s brain damage that was caused by a failure to respond to severe dehydration at birth.
We have recovered record-breaking verdicts and settlements in several states throughout the country. However, we have the resources to handle any case, no matter the size.
Partners Howard Janet, Kenneth Suggs and Dov Apfel are nationally recognized for their work on behalf of victims of birth injury and their families. Each has been included among the Best Lawyers in America® and has received Martindale-Hubbell® AV® Preeminent™ rating, an indication of professional excellence in the legal industry.
Our experience as Boston medical malpractice lawyers means that we know what it takes to bring a successful claim against a doctor, hospital, or other healthcare professional or provider. We are experienced in handling complex cases and will work tirelessly on your behalf to recover the maximum compensation you need for your child’s future.
Learn more by chatting with a representative.
Available Compensation from a Birth Injury Lawsuit
Having handled numerous birth injury cases, our Boston birth injury lawyers are familiar with the unique challenges your family is experiencing. We know that your child’s life is forever changed and that the medical care your child will require is likely significantly more than you can afford.
For these reasons, Massachusetts law allows birth injury victims and their families to file lawsuits seeking compensation for the many damages they have suffered.
You may be able to recover compensation for the expenses you have incurred because of your child’s injury. These damages are called economic damages and will reimburse you for many expenses, including:
- Past, present and future medical expenses, including surgeries, medications and doctors’ appointments
- Long-term care for your child
- Physical and/or occupational therapy
- Necessary specialty medical equipment
- Special education
It may also be possible to recover noneconomic damages, which are more difficult to quantify. This can include:
- Physical pain and suffering
- Emotional suffering
- Loss of enjoyment of life and an inability to perform certain activities
Under Massachusetts law, noneconomic damages are capped at $500,000 dollars in medical malpractice cases. However, this cap will not apply if the victim suffered substantial impairment or loss of a bodily function, was severely disfigured, or is severely limited by other special circumstances.
Our Boston birth injury lawyers will examine the details of your case to determine the maximum compensation are entitled.
Contact Our Boston Birth Injury Lawyers
If you suspect your child was injured at birth because of another’s negligence, you will need an experienced birth injury attorney to get the justice and compensation you deserve. The Boston birth injury lawyers at Janet, Jenner & Suggs have decades of experience handling these types of complex cases and will fight for your best interests.
Contact us today for a free, no obligation consultation to discuss your potential claim. We offer our services on a contingency fee basis. This means we will cover all expenses associated with your claim and will only charge a small fee if you recover compensation. If we are not successful and do not recover compensation on your behalf, you will owe us nothing.