What Is Medical Negligence?
All healthcare professionals have a legal duty to provide the highest quality of medical care possible and to do all that they can to ensure the safety of their patients. These professionals go through several years of schooling, residencies, and training in the accepted standards of medical care for their fields. The healthcare providers who specialize in childbirth have a duty to be aware of how to anticipate, identify, and respond to potential birth complications.
Parents of children with birth injuries often wonder if their healthcare provider could be at fault for causing the injury. In order to determine this, it’s necessary to have your medical records and other evidence reviewed by a qualified medical expert with similar qualifications as your healthcare provider. If this medical expert determines that your healthcare provider failing to meet the standard of care, your provider may be considered medically negligent.
Some examples of medical negligence which commonly contribute to birth injuries include:
- Failure to identify and treat fetal distress, such as oxygen deprivation
- Failure to perform a c-section or performing one too late
- Errors using delivery tools (e.g. forceps, vacuums, etc.)
- Failure to diagnose and treat maternal health problems, like high blood pressure
- Prescribing a drug with harmful side effects for the developing child
If you suspect that your child’s injury may be the result of medical negligence, our resourceful North Dakota birth injury lawyers can help your family find answers.
Common Preventable Birth Injuries
Trauma during childbirth can cause permanent injuries and disabilities which may require a lifetime of care and support for the child. Some of the most common preventable injuries we’ve seen in North Dakota birth injury malpractice cases include:
The lifetime expenses for children with severe injuries can easily become unmanageable for most families. This is why it’s important to seek financial compensation in situations where medical negligence is to blame for a birth injury.
North Dakota Medical Malpractice Laws
All states have their own set of laws and legal statutes which apply to medical malpractice lawsuits. If your family has been discussing taking legal action following your child’s birth injury, you may be curious about what these laws are and how North Dakota malpractice laws could apply to your family’s case.
We’ve compiled a brief summary of North Dakota’s medical malpractice laws below, but we suggest speaking with an experienced birth injury malpractice lawyer if you want to fully understand your family’s legal rights.
Deadline For Filing A Malpractice Claim
Each state has a deadline for filing a medical malpractice lawsuit, known as the statute of limitations. If you fail to file your claim within this deadline, you may forfeit your right to take legal action. Determining this date can be complicated, especially in birth injury cases. It’s best to speak with a lawyer as soon as you have the chance following a birth injury to make sure you meet the requirements of the statute of limitations.
Expert Affidavit Requirements
North Dakota state laws require you to file an expert affidavit within three months of filing your medical malpractice lawsuit. This document must contain the opinion of a qualified medical expert which states that they think you have grounds for a medical malpractice case. It also must include the expert’s name, business address, qualifications, and a summary of the basis for their opinion. Your lawyer can find a qualified medical expert for you and help you fulfill this requirement.
Caps On Noneconomic Damages
North Dakota is one of the many states that limits the amount of financial compensation you can recover in a medical malpractice lawsuit. This limit only applies to noneconomic damages, which are more subjective damages that can’t be directly calculated based on financial costs. Examples of noneconomic damages include pain, suffering, and loss of quality of life. These damages are capped at $500,000.
About Taking Legal Action
Medical malpractice cases are some of the most complicated forms of injury lawsuits. In order to build a successful case, you’ll need assistance from a lawyer with experience in North Dakota birth injury malpractice lawsuits. Our local lawyers understand how state laws can influence a claim, how to gather sufficient medical evidence, and how to present a strong argument in the courtroom. We’re prepared to make sure your child gets all of the support he or she needs for a happy, healthy, and fulfilling life.
To find out more about your family’s legal options and begin planning for the future, contact us today for a free consultation.