Almost 4 million babies are born in the U.S. annually. Approximately 10% of those are preterm births, and over 23,000 infants don’t survive the process. It’s estimated that 6 to 8 out of every 1000 live births still suffer from some form of birth defect or traumatic injury. That equates to almost 30,000 infants every year. Most birth issues can be treated or heal easily within days or weeks. However, some require more healing efforts or can even last a lifetime, and sometimes justice needs to be served. Knowing and understanding the difference between misfortune and malpractice is key to a successful outcome. But what are some tips for filing a birth injury lawsuit?
Prioritize Your Child’s Medical Care
Obviously, your first concern as a worried parent will be to make sure your child’s needs are addressed. But you’ll also need to make sure that you work with the doctors and other medical care providers to establish and learn the total costs of the impending medical treatment. This can be a stressful process, but the information is crucial to determining short and long-term financial responsibilities.
Gather All Information Regarding the Birth and Delivery
Memories can fade quickly, so you’ll need to write down all recollections of your hospital experience as soon as possible. Include the names and titles or job descriptions of every person who was part of your medical treatment from the moment you entered the hospital or birthing facility. The more information you can get your attorney the better. Opinions and recollections of your spouse or the other parent, if they were present for the birth, may be beneficial as well.
Be Careful with Hospital Employees or Insurance Reps
Once it’s established that the cause of the birth injury may be negligence-related by anyone on the medical team, the hospital may begin contacting you. Insurance professionals or legal reps for the hospital or individual doctors themselves may become insistent that you return correspondence or meet in person to discuss the details and potentially agree to a settlement. This may either act as a scare tactic or a stress reducer, but in either case, you have the legal right to inform them you need to speak to your own attorney first. Otherwise, jumping into those waters head-first can negatively affect an otherwise potentially impressive settlement.
Save, File, Document!
After a birth injury, the parents will be swept up in a whirlwind of paperwork and documentation. Multiple sources will send correspondence. Medical bills and care instructions will be emailed, mailed, and offered as downloads. Be sure to request and keep a written copy of the doctor’s professional diagnosis and file every letter or email from the hospital and insurance company. Your birth injury attorney will need this information. Also, be careful not to discuss the potential lawsuit with friends or even close relations. These relations won’t be able to help you get the financial remediation you need, but any form of leaked information even slightly downplaying outside roles in the birth injuries can destroy your case.
Secure a Competent Birth Injury Attorney As Soon As Possible
One wrong conversation or a single misplaced or lost document can completely derail a potentially solid birth injury lawsuit. But a competent legal team can help you remain focused as your emotions soar off the charts. The hospital’s attorneys will be fighting hard to find holes in your claim. Give us a call to help ensure there are none.