New York Birth Injury Lawyer
The birth of a child is supposed to be a joyous and life-changing experience, but when a birth injury occurs, it can be emotionally devastating for the entire family. The emotional toll of a birth injury can be difficult to quantify, as it affects not only the child but also the parents and other family members. Parents may experience a range of emotions, including guilt, grief, anger, and frustration. They may feel helpless, overwhelmed, and unsure of how to move forward. When a birth injury is caused by medical malpractice or negligence, it can be particularly devastating, leaving parents with feelings of anger, frustration, and a sense of injustice. In such cases, a New York birth injury lawyer can help parents pursue legal action against the medical professionals or institutions responsible for the injury.What Is a Birth Injury?
A birth injury refers to any physical damage or trauma that a newborn experiences during the birthing process. These injuries can be minor or severe and can occur before, during, or after delivery. They can occur due to a variety of reasons, such as the use of delivery instruments, prolonged labor, or medical negligence. Birth injuries can have long-lasting effects on a child's health and development, and may require ongoing medical treatment and therapy. In some cases, birth injuries can be prevented with appropriate medical care and interventions.
Some of the most common birth injuries include:
- Brachial plexus injuries: This type of injury occurs when the nerves in the baby's shoulder are damaged during delivery. It can cause weakness or paralysis in the affected arm.
- Cerebral palsy: This is a neurological disorder that can result from brain damage during childbirth. It can cause problems with movement, balance, and coordination.
- Fractures: Fractures of the clavicle (collarbone) and the skull are the most common types of fractures that occur during childbirth.
- Perinatal asphyxia: This occurs when the baby's brain is deprived of oxygen during delivery. It can cause brain damage, seizures, and other serious complications.
- Facial paralysis: This type of injury occurs when the facial nerve is damaged during delivery, causing one side of the baby's face to droop.
- Caput succedaneum: This is a swelling of the soft tissues in the baby's scalp that can occur as a result of prolonged pressure on the head during delivery.
- Subconjunctival hemorrhage: This is a burst blood vessel in the baby's eye that can occur during delivery.
These injuries can have a long-lasting impact on the life of the newborn and their family. They may require ongoing medical care, therapy, and support, which can be expensive and emotionally draining. While not all birth injuries are caused by medical malpractice, some are. If you suspect that your child has suffered a birth injury due to medical negligence, it is important to speak with an experienced New York birth injury lawyer who can help you can hold negligent healthcare providers accountable for their actions and ensure that your child receives the care and support they need to thrive.What are Common Causes of Birth Injuries?
Birth injuries can be caused by a number of factors, including medical malpractice. If you suspect that your child's birth injury was caused by medical negligence, it's important to speak with an experienced birth injury attorney who can evaluate your case and help you seek justice and compensation for your child's injuries. Here are some common causes of birth injuries that may be caused by medical malpractice:
Failure to diagnose or treat maternal infections: Certain infections, such as group B streptococcus (GBS), can be passed from mother to baby during delivery and can cause serious complications if not properly diagnosed and treated.
Delayed or improper delivery: If medical professionals delay in performing a necessary c-section or use improper delivery techniques, such as excessive force during delivery or improper use of forceps or vacuum extractors, it can cause serious injuries to the baby.
Failure to monitor fetal distress: If medical professionals fail to monitor the baby's heart rate during labor and delivery, they may miss signs of fetal distress, which can lead to brain damage or cerebral palsy.
Administering incorrect medication or dosage: Giving the mother incorrect medication or dosage during labor or delivery can result in birth injuries to the baby.
Failure to recognize and respond to umbilical cord issues: If the umbilical cord becomes wrapped around the baby's neck or is compressed during delivery, it can lead to brain damage or cerebral palsy if medical professionals fail to respond appropriately.
When a birth injury is caused by medical malpractice or negligence, it can be particularly devastating for the newborn and their family. If you believe that your child's birth injury was caused by medical malpractice, contact a qualified New York birth injury lawyer as soon as possible to discuss your legal options who can help you investigate your case, negotiate with insurance companies and healthcare providers, and fight for the compensation you and your child deserve.New York Birth Injury Statistics
According to the New York State Department of Health, there were 2,218 birth injury claims filed in New York between 2015 and 2019. Of those claims, 635 resulted in a payout, with a total of $757,341,447 in payouts during that time period. Additionally, the New York State Department of Health reports that the rate of birth injuries in New York is 0.16%, which means that approximately 16 out of every 10,000 births in New York result in a birth injury. These injuries can result in a range of physical and cognitive disabilities and may require ongoing medical care and treatment.How Long Do I Have to File Legal Action for a Birth Injury in New York?
In New York, the statute of limitations for filing a birth injury lawsuit is generally two and a half years from the date of the injury. However, it's important to note that there are some exceptions to this rule. For example, if the injury was not discovered right away, the statute of limitations may be extended to two and a half years from the date of discovery. Additionally, if the child was under the age of 18 at the time of the injury, the statute of limitations may be extended until the child's 20th birthday.
It's important to speak with an experienced birth injury attorney in New York to fully understand your legal rights and options. They can help you navigate the complex legal system and ensure that your case is filed within the appropriate time frame.
In addition to the statute of limitations, there are other factors to consider when pursuing a birth injury lawsuit in New York. For example, New York has strict requirements for filing medical malpractice claims, including the need to obtain a certificate of merit from a qualified medical expert. This certificate must be filed with the court within 90 days of filing the lawsuit.In a New York Birth Injury Case, How Does a Court Determine if a Doctor’s Actions Fell Below the Standard of Care?
In a birth injury lawsuit, the court will need to determine whether the doctor or medical professional responsible for the care of the mother and baby fell below the accepted standard of care. This standard is defined as the level of care and treatment that a reasonably competent healthcare professional with similar training and experience would have provided under the same circumstances. To determine whether the doctor's actions fell below this standard of care, the jury will consider several factors, including:
Medical guidelines: The court may consider medical guidelines and protocols that are generally followed by healthcare professionals in the same field. If the doctor deviated from these guidelines, it may be an indication that their actions fell below the standard of care.
Expert testimony: Medical experts are often called to testify in birth injury cases to provide their opinion on whether the doctor or medical professional acted within the standard of care. These experts are typically physicians who specialize in the same field as the doctor being sued and can provide their professional opinion on the case.
Medical records: The court will review medical records to understand the details of the treatment provided and the decisions made by the doctor or medical professional.
The circumstances of the case: The jury will consider the specific circumstances of the case, including the complexity of the birth and any complications that may have arisen.
Overall, the court will need to assess the evidence and testimony presented to determine whether the doctor or medical professional acted in a manner that fell below the accepted standard of care, which ultimately led to the birth injury.How Much Compensation Will I Receive from my Birth Injury Lawsuit?
In a New York birth injury case, there are various types of damages that may be available to compensate the injured party. These damages can be divided into two main categories: economic damages and non-economic damages.
- Economic damages include:
Medical Expenses: This includes the cost of medical treatment, hospitalization, medication, and therapy required to treat the injury sustained during the birth.
Future Medical Expenses: This includes the cost of any medical care and therapy that may be needed in the future to treat the injury.
Lost Earnings: If the injury suffered during the birth has prevented the child from earning a living in the future, this can be included as lost earnings.
Rehabilitation Costs: The cost of rehabilitation, including physical and occupational therapy, may be included as part of the economic damages.
- Non-economic damages include:
Pain and Suffering: This refers to the physical and emotional pain and suffering experienced as a result of the birth injury.
Loss of Enjoyment of Life: This includes the loss of the ability to participate in activities or hobbies that the child would have been able to do if the injury had not occurred.
Loss of Consortium: This is compensation for the impact the birth injury has on the relationship between the child and their parents or siblings.
The amount of damages awarded in a New York birth injury case will depend on several factors, including the severity of the injury, the impact on the child's life, and the financial losses suffered as a result of the injury. An experienced birth injury attorney in New York can help evaluate your case and determine the appropriate amount of compensation to seek.Notable New York Birth Injury Cases
Here are four notable New York birth injury cases with citations:
- O'Connor v. Grace Hospital, 283 N.E.2d 540 (N.Y. 1972). This case involved a baby who suffered brain damage during delivery due to a delayed C-section. The jury found the doctor and hospital liable for medical malpractice, and the family was awarded $1.4 million in damages.
- Wachter v. State of New York, 802 N.Y.S.2d 74 (N.Y. Ct. Cl. 2005). In this case, the baby was born with cerebral palsy due to a delayed C-section. The family sued the hospital, and the jury awarded them $6.5 million in damages.
- Marlowe v. Staten Island University Hospital, 864 N.Y.S.2d 391 (N.Y. App. Div. 2008). This case involved a baby who suffered brain damage during delivery due to the doctor's failure to diagnose and treat fetal distress. The family sued the hospital and the doctor, and a jury awarded them $19 million in damages.
- Johnson v. New York Methodist Hospital, 69 N.E.3d 1045 (N.Y. 2016). In this case, the baby was born with cerebral palsy due to a delayed C-section. The family sued the hospital and the doctor, and a jury awarded them $20 million in damages.
It is important to note that the outcome of a birth injury case will depend on the specific facts and circumstances of the case, and past cases do not necessarily predict future outcomes.Contact Stephen Bilkis & Associates
Birth injuries are a devastating and all too common occurrence in New York. When a medical professional fails to uphold the standard of care during childbirth, it can result in lifelong disabilities, medical expenses, and emotional trauma for the entire family. If you or a loved one has experienced a birth injury, it is important to seek the guidance of an experienced birth injury attorney serving New York who can help you navigate the legal process. At Stephen Bilkis & Associates we understand the complexities of birth injury cases and are committed to fighting for the rights of our clients. We work tirelessly to investigate the circumstances surrounding the injury, gather evidence, and build a strong case that will hold the responsible parties accountable for their actions. Our goal is to help our clients obtain the compensation they deserve, which can include damages for medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and more. Contact us at 800.696.9529 to schedule a free, no obligation consultation regarding your case. We represent clients in the following locations: Nassau County, Brooklyn, Long Island, Queens, Manhattan, Staten Island, Suffolk County, Bronx, and Westchester County.