Cerebral Palsy Compensation Claims
Cerebral palsy is a condition affecting the functionality of the brain and can be diagnosed immediately at birth or several months later. The impact of the condition on the child and the family can be enormous, and is likely to cause significant changes to lifestyle. Cerebral palsy is the result of starvation of oxygen and can be caused by a number of events. Doctors must work swiftly to prohibit damage caused and must be vigilant in assessing any potential risk or symptoms of a baby’s distress during pregnancy or birth.
Some babies who are starved of oxygen may only suffer very mild symptoms, whereas others can have severe and long-lasting complications. In the worst cases, the results can be fatal. The following guide provides information on cerebral palsy and how to assess eligibility for making a claim for compensation if you feel the condition was caused by medical negligence.
What is cerebral palsy?
Many people think that cerebral palsy is a specific condition or disease, but this is not the case. Rather, cerebral palsy is the term used to describe a brain injury that impacts on movement, usually because of an incident of oxygen starvation. If it can be proved that the condition was caused because of the negligence of a medical practitioner, you are likely to be eligible to make a claim for compensation.
Cerebral palsy can present itself in three ways, they are:
- Spastic cerebral palsy – the condition affects the muscles making them tight, stiff and difficult to manage and control
- Athetoid cerebral palsy – Spontaneous movements are caused by involuntary muscle movement and posture is severely affected which can lead to pain and discomfort as well as difficulty in managing the patient in daily tasks.
- Ataxic cerebral palsy – This type of cerebral palsy causes problems with balance and shaky movements in the patient’s hands and feet. Speech is usually impacted on also.
People who suffer from cerebral palsy can struggle with many everyday activities because of involuntary muscle movements, learning difficulties and hearing and vision impairments. They might find it difficult to walk, write, eat and dress and so living independently may not be an option.
What causes cerebral palsy?
There are natural events that can lead to a baby suffering starvation of oxygen. These are normally related to problems with the umbilical cord during pregnancy and birth. In most instances, any such problems will be recognised by a doctor, midwife or specialist and addressed swiftly in order to protect the baby. If your medical team failed to identify the risks, vulnerabilities or problems in your pregnancy or labour and this resulted in your child being starved of oxygen and a subsequent diagnosis of cerebral palsy, you are likely to be entitled to make a clinical negligence compensation claim.
Cerebral palsy which was the result of medical negligence can have a devastating effect on a victim and family’s life. Injury solicitors are committed to securing the highest possible awards for cerebral palsy compensation claims and are highly experienced in successful outcomes. Some of the most common medical mistakes that negligence solicitors have dealt with in this field include:
- Diagnosis failures and errors in recognising pregnancy-related infections
- Negligence during traumatic births or failure to act swiftly with birth complications
- Failing to diagnose brain injuries in a baby during pregnancy or birth
- Inadequate levels of assessment for child development
- Failure to diagnose or treat placental abruption
- Neglect in treating postpartum infections such as meningitis
If your child has been diagnosed with cerebral palsy following negligent treatment by medical staff, an experienced solicitor will welcome the opportunity to support you in making a claim for the compensation rightfully owed to you, and that may make a significant difference in the levels of care that can be provided to your child.
Should I feel guilty about making a compensation claim?
One recurring concern that we deal with is that clients feel a level of guilt about making a claim for damages against a hospital. They worry that it will have a detrimental impact on the hospital’s ability to perform or that they should simply be grateful that their child survived.
We understand these worries but encourage clients to recognise that hospitals are insured to ensure that victims of neglect can access the compensation they deserve without this impacting on the hospital directly. Furthermore, through making a claim, you highlight potential dangers within the hospital and encourage greater safety observances in the future. Your claim may result in additional training for staff and other improvements that can help to provide better overall care for future patients.
How much compensation will be awarded?
Injury solicitors have an excellent reputation for securing the highest levels of compensation in cerebral palsy compensation claims, and they do this through a vigilant and assertive approach. Your solicitor will take great care to support you in the most empathetic and patient manner and strive to demonstrate the severity of symptoms and impact that the condition has had on your child and family.
We recognise that the compensation awarded to you can make a substantial difference to the support that can be offered to your child and the recovery and treatment that you can access. Your solicitor will therefore be committed to securing the maximum award possible whilst supporting you and your family emotionally throughout the case. The compensation that you are awarded can be beneficial to covering the costs of:
- Alterations to your home
- Speech and language therapy
- Sensory and developmental equipment
- Emotional support and counselling services
- Transport needs
- Educational support and costs
- Time off work for you and any subsequent loss of earnings
- Costs of carers
Your solicitor will always endeavour to provide a thorough case which includes the impact to your whole family in order to attain the maximum award possible. They take pride in securing you the compensation that you deserve in the hope that it offers significant support to your child and family.
What should I do next?
If you would like to find out if you have a valid claim, the first step is to contact a solicitor for a free consultation. This case assessment is provided free of charge and without any pressure or obligation to proceed further. It is an opportunity to have a friendly and confidential discussion with an experienced solicitor who can advise you on the likely success of your claim. You will be able to find out information about the process of making a claim, as well as receiving answers to any questions you may have.
If they are able to help, your solicitor will be more than happy to provide their services on a no win no fee basis. This removes the financial risk that is normally associated with pursuing a claim.
To arrange your free consultation, call 0800 678 1410 or enter your details below to receive a call back.