When Is A Birth Injury Lawsuit An Option?
In order to have grounds for a birth injury medical malpractice lawsuit in Iowa, your child’s injury must have been the result of medical negligence. Negligence is a legal term which applies to any situation where a healthcare provider fails to meet the accepted practices of their profession.
In other words, if your child’s birth injury was caused by your healthcare provider failing to act in the way another responsible healthcare provider would have, your family would likely have grounds for a malpractice claim.
What Does Medical Malpractice Look Like In Practice?
Common forms of medical negligence in birth injury claims include:
- Failure to order a necessary c-section
- Delayed c-sections
- Improper use of vacuum extractors, forceps, and other delivery tools
- Failure to diagnose and treat maternal health conditions, which can affect an unborn child’s health
- Failure to identify and treat fetal distress
- Failure to monitor the child’s oxygen levels before and after delivery
- Prescribing medication with harmful side effects for the developing child
If negligence was a primary cause of your child’s birth injury, you could have grounds for a lawsuit against both the negligent medical professional and the hospital where the birth injury occurred.
Iowa Medical Malpractice Laws
Each state has their own set of laws and legal statutes that apply to medical malpractice claims. If you’re considering a birth injury lawsuit, it can be helpful to be aware of the Iowa medical malpractice laws. However, it’s not important for you to fully understand these complex laws on your own. An experienced Iowa birth injury lawyer can help you better understand how these laws may apply to your claim.
Statute Of Limitations
In each state, there are time limits for filing medical malpractice lawsuits – legally known as the statute of limitations. Determining when this time limit begins can be complicated, especially for birth injury cases.
You can determine if you’re still eligible to file a claim within this window by discussing your case with an experienced Iowa birth injury lawyer. It’s best to act as quickly as possible following a birth injury so that your claim is filed within the statute of limitations.
Testimony From Medical Experts
In most medical malpractice cases, the plaintiff (victim) must have testimony from a medical expert who states that an injury occurred because of a medical professional’s negligence. The only exceptions are in cases where medical negligence is obvious enough that an average juror could understand it without expert testimony. A reliable birth injury law firm will have contacts with medical experts who can help provide this testimony.
Caps On Damages
Some states have a maximum limit set for the amount of financial compensation you can recover in a medical malpractice lawsuit. As of August 2017, Iowa is not one of these states. If you win a settlement or court verdict, there is no limit to the amount of financial compensation you can receive.
However, this may change soon, as a bill to limit medical malpractice compensation has recently passed a vote in the Iowa Senate. The bill still needs to be voted on in the Iowa House.
Iowa also considers how each side could have been responsible for the birth injury. As long as you’re determined to be less than 50% responsible for the injury, you can recover compensation.
Common Birth Injuries In Malpractice Claims
Most birth injury malpractice claims involve serious conditions which require extensive medical treatment and other forms of support.
Some of the most common birth injuries seen in these lawsuits include:
If your child has been diagnosed with one of these conditions, you may have several questions. Speaking with an experienced Iowa birth injury lawyer about your options is often the best way to find answers and to recover the financial support your child needs.
How A Lawyer Can Help Your Family
Families are rarely prepared for the variety of financial and personal difficulties they can expect to face after a birth injury. Children with severe birth injuries may require a lifetime of treatment and support, including frequent medical treatment, adaptive devices (wheelchairs, braces, prosthetics, etc.), personal care-takers, and more.
With the right resources at your disposal, you can ensure that your child lives as comfortably as possible. For birth injuries caused by medical negligence, a medical malpractice lawsuit can help you provide your family with the financial means for these resources. Taking legal action is also important for holding negligent medical professionals responsible for their mistakes.
If you think you may have grounds for a birth injury lawsuit in Iowa, our local lawyers are here to help. We can help you better understand your legal options in a free consultation, and guide you through each aspect of filing a lawsuit. To find out more, contact us today to discuss the details of your case.