If you or your baby developed cerebral palsy due to medical negligence, then you are legally entitled to file a compensation claim against the liable party.
What is Cerebral Palsy?
Cerebral palsy is a neurological condition which affects a person’s voluntary movement and co-ordination. The symptoms of cerebral palsy may vary in severity from person to person, as two patients may experience dramatically different levels of impairment. For instance, some persons with cerebral palsy may be unable to walk without assistance, while others may be able to walk independently.
Cerebral palsy is caused by oxygen deprivation or infection to the infant during pregnancy or birth, leading to brain damage. Sometimes the accident can be unavoidable, while at other times, cerebral palsy may be caused by medical negligence, such as failure of a doctor to identify hypoxia or usage of the wrong tools. If you believe you or your child have suffered cerebral palsy due to the negligent actions of a medical professional, you can make a cerebral palsy compensation claim.
What is a Cerebral Palsy Compensation Claim?
This is a lawsuit filed in court, stating your intention to seek compensation from a healthcare provider or medical institution responsible for the cerebral palsy your child developed.
In some cases, for example, your child may not have suffered cerebral palsy if the medical professional properly monitored him/her for prenatal illnesses or infections. Failure to correctly measure the baby’s heart rate may have also led to cerebral palsy. Other reasons for cerebral palsy due to medical negligence include:
Failing to schedule and promptly perform an emergency C-section
Wasting unnecessary time to deliver baby, causing hypoxia
Incorrect use of birth-assisting tools like forceps during delivery
Failing to promptly identify issues such as problems with the umbilical cord
Types of Compensation you Can Get for Cerebral Palsy Claims
If you or your child have developed cerebral palsy as a result of medical negligence, you can make claims for the pain and suffering as well as other expenses you have incurred due to the condition. Every medical negligence case is unique, so it is impossible to determine the exact amount you may be awarded. However, should a claimant win his/her case, they can generally claim for:
General Damages: This will form the major part of your cerebral palsy compensation claim. The compensation covers the pain and suffering you or your child have experienced due to cerebral palsy.
Loss of earnings: If the care of your child demands that you reduce your working hours or quit your job, you can receive compensation for the lost earnings. In the same vein, if you are an adult with cerebral palsy, you can make claims for the loss of income the condition has caused, if you can prove that it has negatively impacted your career prospects and reduced your work output level.
Medical Bills: You can make compensation claims for any medical care you or your child’s condition has required, including past, present and the estimated future medical expenses.
Travel Expenses: This may include cost of hospital visit trips or any transport you had to take as a result of the cerebral palsy you or your child suffered.
Care Claim: If your friend, family member or a professional has had to provide home care for you or your child, you can make claims for compensation.
Housing modifications: If adjustments have been made to your home due to you or your child’s cerebral palsy, you can make claims for compensation.
Car modifications: If you have had to get a wheelchair-friendly car due to the cerebral palsy you or your child suffered, you can claim compensation for this.
Average Amount for Cerebral Palsy Compensation Claims
As noted earlier, there is no way to determine the precise amount you will be awarded for you or your child’s cerebral palsy claim. Your compensation award will largely be determined by the severity of the condition, as well as the circumstances surrounding your case.
However, the table below can give you a general idea of what to expect for your cerebral palsy claim:
|Type of Illness or Injury||Severity||Description||Compensation Award|
|Cerebral Palsy||Compensation is usually very high||Could be up to £15 million|
|Brain Damage||Very severe||Compensation will depend on severity of injury and how conscious the patient is.||Between £214,000 and £10 million|
|Brain Damage||Moderately severe||Serious disability, causing patient to depend on others for day to day care.||Up to £1 million|
|Brain Damage||Moderate||Reduced ability to perform routine tasks and work. Potential for epilepsy.||Between £69,000 and £114,000|
|Brain Damage||Less severe||Reasonable recovery is possible||Between £11,000 and £32,000|
|Petit Mal & Epilepsy||Less severe epilepsy seizures||Between £41,000 and £100,000|
|Grand Mal & Epilepsy||Severe epilepsy seizures||Between £77,000 and £114,000|
What Qualifies You for a Cerebral Palsy Compensation Claim?
To pursue a claim for cerebral palsy, you must first demonstrate that you had a relationship with the medical professional before the negligence occurred.
For instance, if a doctor helps in delivering your infant, this would be considered a physician-patient relationship, even if they are not your primary doctor. However, if a medical professional who has never treated you offers advice on self-care during pregnancy, there would be no physician-patient relationship if you have never been his/her patient.
Proof of Negligent Treatment
A number of factors can cause an infant to develop cerebral palsy. For your claim to be successful, you must establish that your child has suffered cerebral palsy as a result of medical negligence.
What Should You Do if you or your Child Have Suffered Cerebral Palsy Due to Negligence?
If you are a parent of a child with cerebral palsy or you are an adult with the condition, the medical report will state the cause of your condition. For instance, if it was due to negligent treatment, the report will state where a medical professional failed to prevent the accident.
So, if your baby has suffered cerebral palsy, the first thing you need to do is obtain a formal diagnosis of your child’s condition. Cerebral palsy is usually diagnosed in children over 12 months of age, so obtaining a formal diagnosis may be difficult if your child is below that age. Once the diagnosis is done, the next step is to take the child to a neurological specialist. This specialist will determine if the cerebral palsy was caused by brain damage or other reasons. For instance, the condition may be due to negligence if the scan reveals that the brain was not damaged during gestation, but during birth.
If the evidence reveals that medical negligence occurred during birth and caused cerebral palsy, you may be able to make claims for compensation. A cerebral palsy claim compensation will help you provide the care your child needs and fund any treatment they may require in future.
Making a Cerebral Palsy Compensation Claim
The medical negligence claims process is very complex and time consuming. To make a successful cerebral palsy claim, you should hire a skilled medical negligence solicitor to handle your claim.
It is important that you hire the right solicitor to enhance your chance of success. Expert medical negligence solicitors will assess your case, tell you the estimated value of your claim, and work to help you secure maximum compensation. Medical negligence solicitors will also arrange for medical examinations to obtain proof of negligent treatment.
At Medical Negligence Direct, we understand how stressful and distressing a compensation claims process can be, especially if you are a parent of a child who has suffered cerebral palsy due to negligence. As specialists in medical negligence, we will provide the help and support you need in a sensitive and compassionate way.
Contact A Specialist Solicitor Today For A Free Claim Assessment
Why Choose Us?
You can count on us to help you navigate the complex cerebral palsy claims process. The vast majority of claims we handle are also done on a No Win No Fee basis, making it possible for anyone to seek justice, no matter their financial situation.
To inquire about the claims process, call us on 0800 644 4240 or fill out our claims assessment form and one of our friendly solicitors will speak with you soon. If you have a valid claim for compensation, you can rest assured we will support you all the way, as our goal is to help you secure the compensation you deserve.