If things aren’t handled correctly by the professionals during childbirth, there may be physical harm caused to the mother or the child or both. This type of injury is commonly known as a birth injury.
- The Child
Birth injuries to the baby can cause Cerebral Palsy (brain injury due to loss of oxygen) or Erb’s Palsy (damage to the brachial plexus, a network of the nerves on each side of the upper body).
These are conditions which can cause lifelong disability. Symptoms can be mild and really hold the child back very little. Or they can be very serious.
If the baby’s injury is one that could have been prevented by proper care before, during or immediately after the labour and delivery, then the child may have a claim for compensation.
There is plenty of time to bring such a claim. An injured child can bring court proceedings at any time until his or her 21st birthday. If the event at birth caused brain injury, such that the person is rendered incapable of managing their own affairs, then there is effectively no time limit within which to bring a legal case. However, it is always best to investigate a case when matters are fresh within everybody’s minds and memories have not faded.
- The Mother
Birth injuries to the mother can include spinal injury or pelvic trauma/fractures. If a mother suffers a third degree tear during delivery and it is neither identified nor treated soon enough, she may be left with lifelong symptoms. All such injuries, if caused negligently, can be the subject of a claim.