New York Birth Injury Lawsuit Results In $130 Million Verdict
Cerebral palsy is a neurological disorder that can interfere with physical and mental development. Sometimes, cerebral palsy occurs as a result of a birth injury, which may be attributed to medical negligence. In their New York birth injury lawsuit, a Long Island family argued that their daughter was grievously injured at birth, and earlier this year, a jury agreed with them. On April 17, 2013, the jury awarded a $130 million verdict to the family. The jury award will allow the family to provide for the girl’s extensive medical needs, special education requirements, therapeutic services, and other expenses.
Girl suffers severe type of cerebral palsy
The birth of a child is an event parents eagerly anticipate. But in the case of the Long Island family, the 2002 birth of their beloved daughter marked the beginning of a long struggle to provide daily intensive care and early intervention services. According to The Daily News, who interviewed a spokesman for the family, the young girl cannot verbally express herself, nor can she walk by herself. However, she has a high level of awareness of her surroundings.
Cerebral palsy is a disorder for which there is no cure. It affects muscle tone and posture, causing difficulty with reflexes, mobility, and posture. Patients may have extreme rigidity of their limbs or core, or they may have floppy muscles. Some people with cerebral palsy have problems swallowing, display excessive drooling, and suffer from involuntary movements. Fine motor skills present a significant challenge for many patients. Like the minor child involved in this New York birth injury lawsuit, many with cerebral palsy cannot speak or they have speech delays. These difficulties require a high degree of daily care for families, along with accruing medical expenses and other intervention therapies.
Birth injury medical malpractice
Cerebral palsy, caused by trauma to the brain, is sometimes caused by injuries sustained during the delivery. In the case of this child, the parents alleged that medical staff failed to recognize the signs that the then-infant was oxygen deprived. Oxygen deprivation to the brain is a recognized cause of birth injuries that can result in cerebral palsy. The family contended that the hospital and its healthcare professionals should be held liable for failing to prevent their child’s brain damage.
Family turned down NY medical malpractice settlement
The jury award marks the end of a long legal battle between the family and the hospital. In 2009, the hospital offered the family an $8 million medical malpractice settlement. The family realized even that substantial sum would likely be inadequate to care for the girl for her lifetime. After turning down the offer, the family lost the first trial.
However, in 2011, a state appellate court reversed the verdict and the family had another trial. At the second trial, the jury couldn’t agree on a verdict. The Long Island family persisted in seeking compensatory damages for their daughter, and finally won justice at a third trial, in which they were granted $130 million in compensation. Although the brain damage is irreversible, the family stated that they were content with the knowledge that the girl will receive the best possible care.
Consulting a NY medical malpractice lawyer
Failure to respond to oxygen deprivation to the brain and other signs of fetal distress is just one of the many medical mistakes that can occur during a delivery. If you believe that your child has suffered as a result of mistakes made by the hospital or attending medical staff, you may consider filing a New York birth injury lawsuit. To schedule a free case evaluation, please contact The Sanders Firm at 1-800-FAIR-PLAY. Our legal team has decades of experience in fighting for the legal rights of parents in the New York area. Resources
- Daily News, Long Island family awarded $130 million in suit blaming St. Charles Hospital for daughter\’s brain damage, http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/130m-award-brain-damage-suit-article-1.1319834
- New York Post, This lawyer turned down $8M… and got them $130M, http://www.nypost.com/p/news/local/this_lawyer_and_got_them_hXtlyh2Gl0sNc0LndjXEuI