Legal Help for Birth Injury in Broward County
A birth injury, such as cerebral palsy or Erb’s palsy, can be a devastating event for your child and family. This time can bring many conflicting emotions – joy, anxiety, anger and confusion. Many parents experience undue stress concerning how to pay for a child’s necessary medical care while also addressing their own lost wages and other injury-related expenses.
There is hope after a birth injury. You and your child may be qualified to file a birth injury claim based on a doctor’s or hospital’s medical malpractice. Compensation may include medical costs, lost income and more.
We respect how overwhelming this situation can be. Below, we have provided answers to some of the questions we most commonly hear from clients with cases similar to your own.
What are examples of a birth injury, and does my case qualify?
Birth injury can occur during pregnancy, labor or delivery. Examples of birth injury include:
- cerebral palsy;
- brachial plexus palsy;
- facial fractures;
- oxygen deprivation; and
Your child’s injury or illness may qualify if you can prove a doctor or hospital was negligent in providing a reasonable level of care to you and your child. A lawyer can examine your claim to determine if negligence and liability apply.
How much time do I have to file a claim on my child’s behalf?
Florida’s medical malpractice laws typically give you just two years from the date of the injury in which to commence a lawsuit. This timeline is extended in cases where an injury was not immediately apparent. In those cases, you have two years from the date of discovery of your child’s injury in which to take action. No lawsuit can be filed if more than four years have elapsed from the date of the act of medical malpractice.
Florida’s statute of limitations provides an extended time in which to take action when the victim is a child aged seven years or younger. In this case, you must file the action prior to your child’s eighth birthday. For instance, if your child suffered serious injury during delivery, and you discovered the injury when your child was five years old, you still would have time to initiate a claim. However, any delay in filing a suit may risk running afoul of Florida’s statute of limitations. Swift action is essential to protecting your case.
Are there other resources available to my family?
You may qualify for monthly financial assistance from the Social Security Administration if your child’s injuries have resulted in a serious disability. Ask your attorney how Social Security disability benefits – such as Supplemental Security Income – may impact your child’s claim for damages.
Other resources may be available to your child and your family. This includes:
- hospital social workers;
- school counselors; and
- family therapists.
You and your child also may benefit from joining a support group catering to those with circumstances similar to your own. For example, United Cerebral Palsy of South Florida has a Broward County chapter dedicated to providing such resources as:
- early intervention;
- employment training;
- therapy (including music, speech, etc.);
- family and individual support and counseling; and
Numerous other resources are available to suit your child’s health, social and emotional needs. A birth injury attorney with familiarity of the region may be able to provide contact information for local support groups, medical specialists and more.
I want to take action on behalf of my child. What is my next step?
You may schedule a free, confidential case evaluation with attorney Debi Chalik in Broward County to review your options after a birth injury. Call our offices to learn more – 855-971-1701.