Missouri Birth Injury Lawyer
At Levin & Perconti, our nationally recognized birth injury lawyers in Missouri work with families to gain access to critical information and identify responsible parties, seeking justice to ensure the standard of care remains intact. If you or your child suffered unnecessary injuries during birth, we could file a birth injury claim on your behalf.
- How long after a birth injury can I sue in Missouri?
- How much is my Missouri birth injury claim worth?
- Common Types of Birth Injuries
- How do I prove my Missouri birth injury case?
- Should I hire a birth injury lawyer?
- How Levin & Perconti Can Help With Your Missouri Birth Injury Case
- About Our Birth Injury Lawyers
How long after a birth injury can I sue in Missouri?
Missouri statutes allow injured families to bring a medical malpractice lawsuit against a health care provider or entity within two years of the date of the incident. This law appears to provide people with ample time to contact a personal injury attorney to initiate a lawsuit. However, compiling the necessary facts about a birth injury to support your malpractice claim can be an uphill battle for everyday people.
Hospitals and other health care providers understand that injured families will require compensation, and their insurance premiums may increase. Therefore, they will inevitably want to protect their bottom line. A medical malpractice attorney can handle these tough conversations and ensure your fair treatment and an urgency to address your family’s financial needs as you endeavor to provide your child with the best medical team to manage their injury.
There are additional nuances and exceptions to the statute of limitations rule for birth injuries. For instance, in cases where families later discover negligence may have caused their child’s condition, Missouri law allows children to start a lawsuit until their 20th birthday. It’s important to speak with a medical malpractice lawyer as soon as possible after you learn about or suspect your child’s birth injury so that they can adequately advise you on the applicable time limits to proceed with a lawsuit.
How much is my Missouri birth injury claim worth?
Varying factors can influence the amount of your settlement or verdict in a birth injury case. Many medical malpractice lawsuits settle outside of the courtroom, with negotiations between your lawyer and the lawyers for the relevant insurance companies. The proclivity to settle these types of cases is primarily due to big insurance corporations’ awareness of Missouri medical malpractice statutes that allow victims to recover the following types of compensation, often in substantial sums when injuries are severe or the malpractice was egregious:
- Economic Damages: Awards for out-of-pocket medical expenses, lost wages, and other tangible financial losses related to or stemming from the birth injury.
- Non-Economic Damages: Awards for pain and suffering, loss of companionship, and other such damages. In a catastrophic injury case, the compensation maximum is $787,671 for 2022.
Medical malpractice compensation limits typically increase by approximately 1.7 percent annually, so these numbers are subject to fluctuation each year. It’s also critical to calculate any projected medical costs associated with caring for an injured baby or child. Costs can increase as your aging child’s needs change or as new injuries become apparent, and these future economic losses could significantly affect the total value of your case.
Common Types of Birth Injuries
Birth injuries happen for various reasons, many of which are preventable. Although natural or genetic conditions sometimes play a part, medical negligence ranks among the leading causes of many birth injuries. Doctors might fail to make a diagnosis in a timely fashion, leading to poor outcomes. Additionally, the misuse of forceps, pressure, lack of oxygen to the baby, and other medical errors can leave infants with painful, long-term health conditions.
The most prevalent birth injuries include:
- Brain Damage
- Caput Succedaneum
- Cerebral Palsy
- Erb’s Palsy
- Facial Paralysis
- Lacerations and Scarring
- Hypoxic Ischemic Encephalopathy
- Bone Fractures
- Spinal Cord Injuries
- Vaginal Tears
- Nerve Damage
- Uterine Rupture
- Blood Hemorrhaging
Mothers and infants who sustain birth injuries need to understand these are not necessarily “accidents.” The medical professionals involved in your pregnancy should know how to manage every conceivable scenario, barring unavoidable genetic defects. Even then, they should generally be aware and have already informed you of any risks to you or your child.
Instead, birth injuries are often the result of a negligent party failing to:
- Recognize fetal distress
- Identify infection
- Manage a procedure correctly
- Handle the umbilical cord
- Prepare for and react quickly and efficiently to common birthing process complications
How do I prove my Missouri birth injury case?
In a medical malpractice case, the burden of proof falls on the party initiating the lawsuit, also known as the plaintiff. In a birth injury case, the doctor-patient relationship is central. You can use documents pertaining to pregnancy consultations, appointments, billing statements, and other physician records to indicate that the mother attended and received medical care at a specific health care facility or from a particular provider.
After demonstrating that the health care provider worked with an expectant mother, the plaintiff’s attorney can establish negligence. Your lawyer will use the available evidence and applicable law to prove the following:
- Duty: Showing a doctor-patient relationship exists places a responsibility on the health care provider to effectively and professionally perform medical procedures.
- Breach: When a health care provider fails to meet the doctor-patient duty, they wind up breaching that duty.
- Cause: The cause of action in a medical malpractice lawsuit involves the injuries mom or child suffered due to negligence. The chain of events leading to the sustained injuries must have been the proximate cause of such injuries, and the doctor or other health care provider should have reasonably known that their actions or inaction could result in harm.
- Losses: Both economic and non-economic damage awards are necessary to receive total, fair compensation in a birth injury case.
Establishing this type of personal injury case requires persuasive evidence. Medical records, eyewitness testimony, and expert opinions regarding medical procedures and outcomes are crucial.
Overcoming resistance from negligent hospitals can be an uphill battle, and many try to avoid responsibility to protect their own interests (i.e., bottom line and reputation). Law firms that handle medical malpractice litigation daily possess the knowledge and expertise to uncover critical facts that improve case results.
Should I hire a birth injury lawyer?
Injured families are usually best served by working with a law firm that routinely handles birth injury and medical malpractice cases. Civil litigation involving health care providers and big insurance corporations requires determination and experience in this area of law. Birth injury lawyers have the necessary knowledge to accurately estimate compensation based on evidence, losses, and Missouri law.
Rather than discuss negligence as a general factor, a skilled medical malpractice attorney understands the specific variables leading to injuries resulting from poor medical practices. Examples of such variables include the improper use of forceps and the incorrect administration of labor-inducing medications.
How Levin & Perconti Can Help With Your Missouri Birth Injury Case
At Levin & Perconti, we provide compassionate legal advice and get families the maximum, fair compensation they deserve. Our birth injury results include:
- $20 million verdict for a child who suffered a brain injury due to the negligence of nurses and residents during labor.
- $16 million settlement for a child who suffered a brain injury due to negligent nursing and medical care during labor and cesarean section.
- $14 million verdict for a child who suffered a brain injury due to lack of oxygen during birth.
- $11.5 million settlement for a child with hypoxic-ischemic brain injury.
- $9 million settlement for a baby who suffered permanent brain damage as a result of a doctor’s failure to test the mother for Group B Strep Meningitis during prenatal care.
Our team of legal professionals understands the pain and loss families experience in the wake of a birth injury. We are passionate about holding the negligent parties accountable while attaining some semblance of justice for the suffering families. If your baby sustained a birth injury or you’re a mother who suffered unnecessary harm during the birthing process, contact Levin & Perconti for a free consultation today.
About Our Birth Injury Lawyers
Dov Apfel and Seth Cardeli are two of the leading birth injury attorneys in the nation. They have litigated cases throughout the United States and at the federal level, and are passionate advocates for the families they represent. Dov Apfel is nationally known for his high level of medical knowledge, and acts as a resource for attorneys, judges, and healthcare providers throughout the country. He has been practicing in the field of birth injury for over 40 years and was the recipient of the Dan Cullan Memorial Lifetime Achievement Award presented by the AAJ Birth Injury Trauma Litigation Group in 2011. Apfel and Cardeli have presented at dozens of educational events and written for numerous publications. In 2020, they secured one of the top five highest medical malpractice settlements in the nation.
Not only were they so professional but also so caring and thoughtful. It was very difficult going over the facts in our mother's case but they were so compassionate and understanding and allowed us to be with them every step of the way. We were able to sit in on the depositions and we were really able to see how hard they worked on our behalf.