Birth Injury Settlements: When, Why, & How Much?

It’s all about the money! That’s the top priority for insurance companies representing doctors in birth injury lawsuits. They’ll do anything to avoid paying out birth injury settlements.

But for parents, their baby’s health and wellbeing is the priority, not money. However, monetary compensation is what they need and deserve to give their baby a better life. A settlement can mark the difference between a lifetime of setbacks and suffering, and a life of recovery and progress.

At Hampton & King, achieving compensation for our clients is our priority.  We fight for your right to fair compensation. Was your child injured at birth? Give us a call and we’ll help you determine if you’re entitled to a birth injury settlement. 

Birth injury cases receives monetary settlement.

What Are Birth Injury Settlements?

Birth injury settlements are compensation for negligence that took place during pregnancy or birth. That means that a doctor, nurse, or hospital employee’s actions injured the baby. 

Birth injury settlements are only for cases of medical malpractice. You can’t receive compensation for unpreventable birth defects, such as:

  • Disorders and defects due to a family’s genes or DNA
  • Defects due to mother’s age (over 40)
  • Conditions that result from a premature birth (before 37 weeks of gestation)

What kinds of mistakes do warrant a malpractice claim? Keep scrolling to find out!

Negligent Acts That Warrant Birth Injury Settlements

Here are examples of negligence that may lead to a settlement:

  • Failing to monitor the mother or baby
  • Improper hygiene (For example, failing to sterilize equipment, leading to infection). 
  • Using inappropriate delivery techniques. 
  • Anesthesiology errors
  • Not treating a mother or child’s injuries as soon as they’re apparent
  • Improper use of forceps or vacuum to deliver a baby
  • Failing to order a C-section when vaginal delivery isn’t safe
  • Ignoring or misreading fetal heart readings 
  • Medication errors 

Most birth-related incidents of negligence resolve in birth injury settlements. Now, accepting a settlement may sound like you’re “settling” for less than the best. But it’s often the best path to take. Usually it’s the quickest way to get much-needed funds for your child’s care. 

 If the parties can’t agree on a settlement amount, the case might go to trial. A jury verdict turn over higher compensation than a settlement. But trials can take much longer to reach a resolution. We’re talking not weeks or months, but years. And a positive trial outcome isn’t guaranteed.

Common Birth Injuries Leading To Settlements

Our firm has handled a wide range of birth injury cases. We’ve found that the most common condition leading to birth injury settlements is Cerebral Palsy. This condition is a congenital disorder that mainly affects muscle tone, posture and movement. It can cause temporary or permanent injury. 

Other birth injuries that often lead to hospitals/doctors settling out of court include:

  • Jaundice and Kernicterus
  • Brain damage due to oxygen deprivation
  • Bleeding on the brain
  • Brachial palsy
  • Bruising and lacerations from forceps
  • Hydrocephalus (a build-up of fluid in the brain)
  • Injured facial nerves and facial paralysis
  • Bone fractures (most common are fractures of the collarbone, skull, and arms)
  • Complications from viral infections such as Herpes encephalitis
  • Untreated infections

How Settlements Are Calculated

The biggest question on your mind right now might be: how much will I get? The exact amount depends mainly on two things: your tangible losses and intangible losses.

Tangible losses include loss of income, hospital bills, and cost of medicine and special equipment. Your lawyer can use receipts and bills to show the exact amounts you’ve had to pay or will pay for your child’s care. 

But intangible losses don’t have a paper trail. It’s hard to put a number on pain, suffering, and loss of quality of life. This is why it’s important to have an experienced birth injury lawyer on your side to fight for fair compensation. Insurance companies are notorious for downplaying intangible losses to the max in order to minimize amounts paid in birth injury settlements.

Lawyer speaks with client about birth injury settlement.

How To Maximize Your Settlement

Our firm has found that clients achieve better outcomes when they file as soon as possible. It’s also important to save important evidence (such as hospital bills) that can bolster your case. In addition, naming multiple plaintiffs may result in higher settlement amounts. 

Here are the markers of a successful birth injury settlement:

  • The cause of the birth injury  is very clear.
  • You can pinpoint how and when your provider was negligent. 
  • You filed your lawsuit within the statute of limitations. (This is the time limit that each state puts on filing medical malpractice lawsuits).

Looking For A Birth Injury Lawyer?

You deserve justice, fair compensation, and compassionate representation. And we’re ready to put our expertise to work on your family’s behalf. You can call us at 713.489.0993 or contact us online for a free consultation. We don’t charge you anything upfront – our fees are only paid if you receive a settlement or win a court case.