Birth injuries can devastate families for decades. Mothers and fathers of injured children often feel immense guilt for the harm their children suffered, even if that harm was solely the fault of negligent doctors, midwives, and other healthcare professionals.
At Parrish DeVaughn Injury Lawyers, we can’t reverse, heal, or undo the damage that mothers and their children suffer because of negligent medical providers. But we can help them get the compensation they need to move forward with their lives as best they can.
Our Oklahoma medical malpractice lawyers are here to answer your questions and address your concerns if you think you have a birth injury claim. And while all claims are different concerning how much compensation victims can receive, this blog explores the types of compensation that your family may be eligible to recover.
Economic Damages Available to Birth Injury Victims
When most people think of personal injury claims and lawsuits, they think of the money that they can receive for their economic damages. These damages refer to easily calculated expenses such as:
- Medical bills—The biggest initial cost associated with a birth injury is medical costs. That’s because both the mother and child may need extensive medical treatment to survive, let alone thrive after the injury occurs. Mothers may need emergency surgery, while newborns may need prolonged care and treatment in the hospital.
- Specialist visits—Children who suffer birth injuries often develop lifelong disabilities and medical problems. That means they may need specialized care for the rest of their lives. So even after they’ve been stabilized at the hospital, they may need to continue going to expensive clinics and care facilities for years and even decades to come.
- Lost income—It seems unusual to pursue compensation for a newborn’s lost income, but many birth injuries result in permanent disabilities that can make it difficult or impossible to work. Babies affected by those types of birth injuries may never have jobs or pursue careers, resulting in a lifetime of no wages or earning ability.
- Disfigurement—Injured infants and their families can also receive economic damages for injuries that result in disfigurement. Because these types of injuries can negatively affect victims’ lives, they can and should be adequately compensated the same way that disabling injuries are.
Non-Economic Damages Available to Birth Injury Victims
Because birth injuries so often severely harm innocent babies, the emotional distress they cause can be overwhelming. That’s why many of these claims result in significant non-economic damages, which are also called “pain and suffering” in injury claims.
- Emotional distress—Both mothers who are injured in birth injuries and mothers whose children are injured often suffer severe emotional trauma. This trauma can impact them for years to come, and it can result in diagnoses such as depression, anxiety, and post-traumatic stress disorder.
- Reduced quality of life—Babies who are birth injury victims have so much taken from them, including their ability to enjoy life to the fullest as they grow up. Children who are disabled or disfigured at birth because of negligent medical providers may never have the quality of life they would have had otherwise, and that means they deserve maximum compensation.
Punitive Damages Are Sometimes Awarded for Birth Injury Claims
There’s a third type of damages that is sometimes given to victims in personal injury claims. These damages are designed to punish defendants for their reckless and negligent behavior, and they’re called punitive damages.
These damages are rare and are reserved for the most extreme cases of negligence and maliciousness. Although these damages aren’t as commonly awarded as economic and non-economic damages, they are always worth considering and pursuing, especially in cases that go to trial and that involve doctors, midwives, and other healthcare professionals acting in a manner that puts mothers and their babies at extreme risk of injuries and harm.
Our Lawyers Can Determine Exactly How Much Money Your Family Is Owed
One of the cornerstones of any successful personal injury claim is pursuing an amount of compensation that accurately reflects the economic and non-economic damages the victim suffered. And at Parrish DeVaughn, that’s exactly what we’ll do when you contact us and tell us your story. We don’t take anything for granted about your claim, and we’ll scour medical records and consult with experts to determine exactly how much money you and your child will need.
Don’t settle for anything less than what your family deserves after this devastating injury caused by people you trusted. Contact our firm today. We’ll ensure every medical bill is accounted for in your claim, and we’ll fight aggressively to get your family paid.