Indianapolis Birth Injury Attorneys
Birth Injuries in Indiana
Every parent hopes their child will be born happy and healthy—but, sadly, this is not always the case. While some birth defects and injuries cannot be reasonably prevented, others are the result of avoidable medical errors and acts of negligence.
If you or your child suffered a birth injury, and you suspect a negligent medical provider or hospital was to blame, reach out to our team at Hovde Dassow + Deets right away. With over 100 years of combined experience, our Indianapolis birth injury attorneys have the knowledge, resources, and skills to advocate for you and your family. In total, we have recovered more than $300 million in compensation for our clients. In every case, we strive to maximize our clients’ individual recoveries so that they can effectively navigate the healing process.
What Is a Birth Injury?
A birth injury occurs before, during, or immediately after the child is born. While most birth injuries affect the unborn or newborn child, mothers can also sustain severe and even life-threatening birth injuries.
Some examples of common birth injuries affecting children include:
- Oxygen deprivation
- Cerebral palsy
- Brachial plexus injuries
- Erb’s palsy
- Facial paralysis
- Nerve damage
- Broken bones/fractures
- Forceps/vacuum injuries
- Hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy (HIE)
- Brain damage
Some examples of common maternal birth injuries include:
- Untreated infections
- Broken bones/fractures
- Pelvic organ prolapse
- Uterine rupture
- Vaginal tears
- Post-natal hemorrhage
- Anesthesia and spinal epidural errors
Birth injuries are the result of medical negligence and malpractice. In contrast to birth defects, which typically occur due to genetic and/or environmental factors, birth injuries are almost always preventable. When they occur, negligent medical providers can be held legally responsible for affected victims’ damages.
How Do Birth Injuries Happen?
Generally speaking, most birth injuries happen when OB/GYNs, nurses, doctors, and other medical professionals are negligent or provide substandard care. This is known as medical malpractice, and it can have severe, even deadly consequences.
Specifically, birth injuries are commonly caused by:
- Misdiagnosis or failure to diagnose maternal infections
- Delayed treatment or failure to treat maternal infections, disorders, or conditions
- Prolonged labor/failure to order a timely cesarean section (C-section)
- Failure to recognize or address birth injury risk factors in the mother or baby
- Failure to monitor or respond to signs of fetal distress
- Improper use of forceps, vacuum extractors, and other assistive birthing devices
- Failure to recognize breach presentation
- Use of excessive force when attempting to deliver the baby
- Improper or inadequate follow-up care/aftercare for the mother or baby
- Medication errors during pregnancy or delivery
- Surgical errors during C-sections
At Hovde Dassow + Deets, we know how devastating it is to realize that your child’s injuries were the result of a trusted medical provider’s mistake or negligence. Our Indianapolis birth injury attorneys are here to help you understand your legal options, including your potential right to financial compensation.
Compensation in Birth Injury Cases
The purpose of filing a birth injury lawsuit is twofold: first, you can hold the responsible medical provider accountable for their conduct and fight to ensure you, your child, and your family receives justice; second, you can seek fair financial compensation for certain economic and non-economic losses you have endured as a result of the medical provider’s negligence. Collectively, these losses are referred to as “damages.”
The exact type of and amount in damages you can receive depends on the specific details of your case. For example, if your child suffered a permanent birth injury requiring extensive medical attention and care, such as cerebral palsy, you may be able to recover compensation for ongoing medical expenses, future care costs, medical equipment (wheelchairs, braces, etc.), and other related damages. The affected child may also be entitled to pain and suffering damages, which are meant to compensate victims for lost enjoyment of life, diminished quality of life, physical pain, and emotional distress. The severity of the injury, as well as the extent of the victim’s damages, play a large role in the overall value of a given birth injury case.
At Hovde Dassow + Deets, we help our clients fight for maximum recovery for their damages, which may include the following:
- Emergency medical care
- Surgeries and other treatments
- Medical/assistive devices
- Ongoing and future care costs
- Pain and suffering
- Lost enjoyment of life
- Lost quality of life
- Emotional and/or mental distress
- Lost income/wages
- Lost earning ability
Proving Your Birth Injury Case
Like other types of medical malpractice cases, birth injury claims tend to be relatively complex.
Proving your birth injury claim requires that you establish several key elements:
- A provider-patient relationship existed between yourself and the defendant
- The defendant failed to uphold the accepted standard of care
- You (or your child) were injured and/or suffered damages
- The defendant’s negligence or substandard care was the cause of your or your child’s injuries
It is not enough to prove that your child was born with a defect or suffered an injury at birth; instead, you must prove that your doctor failed to act or acted in a way that another qualified medical professional would have or would not have acted in the same or similar circumstances. You must also prove that this conduct was the direct or proximate cause of injury, whether yours or your child’s.
At Hovde Dassow + Deets, our Indianapolis birth injury lawyers work alongside top medical experts to aid in providing powerful testimony for our clients. We conduct exhaustive investigations and leave no stone unturned when it comes to pursuing justice on behalf of children, parents, and families who have suffered devastating losses due to negligent and improper medical practices. Let our team fight for you and your family.
What Is the Statute of Limitations on Birth Injury Cases in Indiana?
Most medical malpractice cases in Indiana, including birth injury cases, are subject to a two-year statute of limitations. This means you typically only have two years from the date of the alleged malpractice to sue the liable party in court. However, if the injury could not reasonably be discovered right away, the court may extend the statute of limitations from the date on which the injury was discovered or reasonably could have been discovered.
In birth injury cases involving children under the age of six, the child (or a parent or guardian on their behalf) has until their eighth birthday to file a birth injury lawsuit.
How Hovde Dassow + Deets Can Help
Navigating the aftermath of a traumatic pregnancy or delivery is difficult enough. You shouldn’t have to also worry about fighting with the hospital or its insurance company for fair compensation when a trusted doctor or nurse’s negligence caused you or your baby harm. Instead, allow our team to handle the details of your case while you focus on your physical and emotional recovery.
With more than a century of combined experience and a long, proven track record of success, Hovde Dassow + Deets is prepared to represent you and your best interests. We pride ourselves on offering highly personalized and attentive legal support. When you choose our firm, one of our partner attorneys will be directly involved in your case from start to finish. You can always reach us—we answer our phones 24/7 and are happy to answer any questions you may have at any stage of the legal process.
Words can not express how exceptional Rick Hovde and Kelly Faulk are in the Field of Medical Malpractice- Bob D
You can tell we're just not a client but a family that they care about.- Steve H.
The best thing about working with Hovde Dassow + Deets was Nick's professionalism & knowledge.- Sarah S.
Our family very much appreciates the services we received from Nick Deets & his staff.- Teresa S.
Very professional, honest, upfront all throughout the case.- John H.