Tips on a legal claim for your child with Cerebral Palsy

Consideration was given for the editing and publication of this post.

Taking care of a child with Cerebral Palsy is draining in many ways, but it is especially, financially taxing. It is heartbreaking when you know that a medical mistake or negligence caused the problem in your child in the first place. There is a little consolation in knowing that you can pursue a claim for it.

If you know that medical personnel caused your child’s neurological disorder, it is only fair that they compensate you, to make it easier for you to take care of them.

Compensation can improve the life of a child with cerebral palsy by allowing them to get treatment and access therapies that can  enhance their quality of life. It makes a world of difference.

If you think you have a claim, you should pursue it. Here is how to go about it.

Do you have proof of substandard treatment or medical negligence?

It is often the case that mistakes or instances of negligence do lead to Cerebral Palsy. Some examples include; not noticing signs of distress during delivery, ignoring distress, not taking it seriously or injuring a child’s brain during birth.

If you feel that your child was a victim of such medical errors, you can pursue a claim for Cerebral Palsy. However, you need proof beyond word of mouth that the medical staff caring for the mother and child now with Cerebral Palsy during pregnancy and birth did not provide proper care. Medical records are a good start.

Find a good solicitor

If you have some concrete evidence that medical staff were negligent or made a mistake during your child’s birth that caused Cerebral Palsy, you need a solicitor.

It is important to get a solicitor that specializes in cerebral palsy claims. You can get an excellent cerebral palsy claims lawyer by following these tips.

If the solicitor has extensive experience with Cerebral Palsy and a good record of winning claims,  you are likely to get representation that will possibly end up in compensation.

Even if you don’t have enough money but have an airtight case, it is possible to get legal assistance for a Cerebral Palsy claim as you will see here.

Things that your solicitor needs to put forth a claim

When you visit your solicitor, bring your medical records with you and any other evidence you have to prove your claim. The medical records and other pieces of evidence will give a clear picture of the treatment given and will provide any details of malpractice or substandard care.

The lawyer is likely to give the records to a medical expert to ascertain your claim. The health experts will determine what went wrong and how the situation should have been handled. Expect the solicitor to consult pediatricians, obstetricians, experts in midwifery, etc. in a bid to get a good picture of what went wrong and if the hospital was negligent in the case.

There is evidence of negligence. Now what?

If a transparent investigation of the medical records brings up errors or signs of inadequate treatment, you should claim compensation.

In such a case, the experts provide a clear outline of how negligent the hospital staff was, to cause the mental injury that triggered your child’s Cerebral Palsy. It will help to determine the amount of compensation the solicitor will ask for on your behalf.

Once they have the parameters of negligence right, it’s time to contact the defendant. Your solicitor will write to the defendant, in this case, the medical facility responsible for the substandard treatment or care you experienced.

The letter to the defendant will outline the allegations of negligence towards the hospital. It will also show details of the injuries caused, as well as the child’s condition ( the severity and the resulting loss and pain).

What happens when the defendant accepts liability?

In cases where the defendant writes back accepting liability, the value of the claim is assessed. That is the amount of compensation you are asking for.

The value of the claim is determined by looking at the child’s present and future needs, based on an estimate of their life expectancy. The claim is forwarded, and they arrange payment.

You should let your solicitor handle negotiations for you. Do not allow the defendant or any of their representatives to negotiate with you personally. It may ruin your case.

How is the value of a compensation claim determined?

Compensation for Cerebral Palsy is valued by looking at several things;

  • Medical reports showing the severity of the condition,
  • A look at your child’s past, present, and future health needs including therapy, medication, hospital visits, etc.
  • A look at your child’s past, current, and future life needs, including accommodation, schooling, specialized equipment, etc.

Looking at the cost of these needs will help determine a worthy compensation that will help to significantly ease the challenges of taking care of your child with  Cerebral Palsy,  for the rest of their life.

What if the defendant refuses liability?

In many cases, the defendant refuses liability, and you and your solicitor have to go to court. You should only pursue a claim in court if you have a strong case based on expert evidence and responses from the defendant.

Pursuing a weak claim will only put more strain on your finances, and you don’t want that. Your solicitor will tell you whether you have a strong claim that is likely to end up in a favorable outcome for you and your family.

Why should I pursue a claim?

You may be on the fence about this and are a bit reluctant to pursue a Cerebral Palsy claim for your child even if you deserve compensation. Here are some excellent reasons why you should.

  • Pursuing a claim can help the institution repair its mistakes and tighten its procedures, saving other parents from suffering the same ordeal you are going through.
  • There are experts and solicitors with the knowledge and experience to ensure you get a claim if you have evidence. So why not use them?
  • Funds from a claim will ease your distress and that of other family members. If you have other children, they don’t have to suffer for lack of enough upkeep as you care for their sibling with Cerebral Palsy,
  • Cerebral Palsy mentally and emotionally strains families. Having enough money to deal with the challenges of the disease, and get proper treatment significantly improves the quality of life for all involved.

If you have a good claim, don’t be afraid to reach out. Contact an expert solicitor on Cerebral Palsy claims for advice today!