Cerebral Palsy Negligence Claims
Cerebral palsy is a lifelong condition and can be very challenging. Your child can have a good quality of life, but especially in severe cases, they might need lifelong support to achieve this.
Parents can claim compensation for cerebral palsy to cover the additional costs of providing the care and attention their child needs.
Even in mild to moderate cases, compensation can go a long way towards helping your family make up for the pain and suffering endured as a whole, as well as the specific financial implications of caring for your child or adapting your home to meet their needs.
If you are not sure whether to make a claim, contact Sheldon Davidson Solicitors and we can talk through the circumstances of your case and help you to decide whether to proceed or not.
Why choose Sheldon Davidson Solicitors?
Sheldon Davidson Solicitors work closely with our clients to make sure we understand all the circumstances of your case to make the strongest possible claim for compensation.
We can help you to decide if you have enough evidence to prove negligence during birth or immediately afterwards so that we can show that your child's cerebral palsy came from an avoidable brain injury.
In every case, we listen sensitively and sympathetically to whatever you are going through. We know how difficult you may find it to talk about, but it's an important part of building your claim and getting you the compensation you deserve.
Often claimants find compensation not only helps financially but also marks a kind of closure, allowing them to move on and start building a better life with a higher quality of care for their child.
We were established in 1997 and have represented clients across the north-west and beyond during the years since, becoming a trusted law firm for families throughout England and Wales in that time.
What is Cerebral Palsy?
Cerebral palsy is a general term given to a collection of similar problems with movement and coordination. There are a variety of possible causes and no single precise definition for the condition.
People living with cerebral palsy might have difficulty communicating. They may have impaired vision or learning difficulties, in addition to mobility problems.
Cerebral palsy has several levels of severity, including mild, moderate and severe, and the exact symptoms can vary between different people.
Importantly, cerebral palsy is not always congenital - it can be caused by a range of complications during pregnancy, including difficulties during the birth that lead to the brain being starved of oxygen.
When this occurs due to medical negligence, Sheldon Davidson Solicitors can help you to claim compensation for pain, suffering and financial hardship arising from your child's condition, so your entire family can have a better quality of life.
Can I claim for a birth injury believed to have caused Cerebral Palsy?
If your child has sustained physical or mental injuries you feel are a direct result of problems experienced during childbirth - especially in the case of premature births – you may have strong grounds to make a medical negligence compensation claim. That claim could perhaps relate to Cerebral Palsy.
However, it might not be clear that your child has the condition until some time later, often a period of some years as they start to reach the common milestone ages for mobility and communication.
At that point, if you receive a diagnosis of cerebral palsy, you might consider making a medical negligence claim if you believe the condition is a result of the way your baby was delivered by healthcare professionals.
Was my Child's Cerebral Palsy caused by medical negligence?
Deciding whether or not your child's cerebral palsy was caused by medical negligence is a crucial factor in investigating a medical negligence compensation claim.
As mentioned above, it can take time to diagnose cerebral palsy. It may be several years since your child's birth before you or a GP questions whether something is wrong.
The way that your child’s labour and delivery was managed could be crucial – perhaps your baby was in distress and their heart rate was abnormal. Therefore, it may be the case that your child should have been born by caesarean section instead of a natural delivery, which may have lessened the severity of your child’s condition.
There may have been indications during your pregnancy, which should have alerted the hospital clinicians or your midwife to the fact that your pregnancy should have been more closely managed. These investigations may not have been undertaken, or clear signs may have been missed.
Certain conditions detected in the early days of your child's life - such as meningitis, hypoglycaemia and jaundice - can also raise the risk of cerebral palsy, so evidence of these can be an important addition to any claim.
Your medical notes and other records are an important form of evidence, and can be integral to forming the basis for grounds on which to make a compensation claim.
Expert witnesses will need to be engaged to give an opinion on the quality of care you received during labour, as well as the level of aftercare given to your baby immediately after birth.
For many parents, part of the motivation to make a compensation claim is a desire to find out exactly what led to their child's condition, and we will always aim to uncover the truth where a belief exists that causation is becuase of medical negligence.
Can I claim compensation for my own Cerebral Palsy?
If you have been living with cerebral palsy since birth, you may have grounds to make a claim in your own right.
A claim for medical negligence must start within time limits set out by the law in England & Wales. This tends to be 3 years from the date of the incidence, or where the claim is not made by the parents but by the sufferer, the 3-year time limit starts would start at the victim’s 18th birthday.
We would urge anybody aged 18-20 who believes their cerebral palsy to be the result of a birth injury to get in touch as soon as possible to discuss making a claim.
The sooner you contact Sheldon Davidson Solicitors, the sooner we can examine your case, to make sure your compensation claim is completed before the standard three-year deadline expires.
Causes of Cerebral Palsy
When making a claim, We must have confidence that it can be proved, that your child's cerebral palsy is the result of poor practice by healthcare professionals during birth.
Cerebral palsy has several potential causes, including:
- Bleeding in the baby's brain due to any reason.
- Fetal genetic mutation during pregnancy that affect the brain's development.
- infections picked up by the mother during pregnancy.
- A period of Oxygen loss and blood supply loss to your baby.
Cerebral palsy may also have been caused by a failure to have monitored your child during pregnancy or after they were born.
Cerebral palsy may also have been caused by a failure to have monitored your child during pregnancy or after they were born.
For a successful medical negligence compensation claim, it will be necessary to demonstrate that there was no possible cause, other than the actions of the doctors and nurses who delivered your baby.
This is more likely in premature births or if your baby had to be resuscitated after being born.
We understand how difficult and distressing it can be to re-live these kinds of events and will always treat each case sympathetically.
But it's important to get the compensation you deserve for that distress, and for the extra costs, you face looking after your child throughout their condition.
Types of Cerebral Palsy
There are different types of cerebral palsy, depending on the individual's symptoms. They include:
- Spastic cerebral palsy, the most common form of the condition, which can affect the limbs on one side of the body or may only affect the legs.
- Athetoid cerebral palsy, which typically affects all the limbs and some of the muscles in the face.
- Mixed cerebral palsy, which combines some of the symptoms of both of the above conditions.
- Ataxic cerebral palsy, a rare form of the condition associated with brain damage that causes problems with coordination and balance.
All of these different types have elements in common - damage to the brain that leads to problems with muscle movement and coordination - but they also have key differences, such as the particular part of the brain where the damage occurred.
What can I claim for?
We can help you to work out exactly how much compensation to claim, based on factors like the severity of your child's condition and the challenges your family has faced as a result.
Compensation claims for birth injuries like cerebral palsy include two main parts:
- General damages provide compensation for physical pain, emotional suffering and your child's loss of mobility and other functions.
- Special damages provide compensation to repay any specific costs you have faced, for example due to loss of earnings if you had to stop working to care for your child.
If you have suffered - physically, emotionally, or financially - due to the negligence of healthcare professionals, it is only right that you should claim compensation for your losses.
This can give you the money you need to improve your child's quality of life while making things a little easier for your family as a whole.
We welcome all enquiries, no matter whether you have firmly decided to make a claim, or you want a second opinion on whether to proceed.
After listening to your circumstances, we can help you to decide:
- Whether to make a claim?
- What your claim may be worth?
- How to demonstrate medical negligence.
Because we work on a no-win, no-fee basis, you can be assured we will give you an honest opinion on whether you have sufficient grounds to make a claim.
If you choose to proceed, we will work hard to make sure you are awarded the compensation you are entitled to.
From our offices in Greater Manchester, our Birth Injury Solicitors, work with clients across England and Wales, and especially in parts of the North West; like Bury and Bolton, Prestwich, and Oldham, Radcliffe, and Rochdale, and many more.
We are Lexcel-accredited. That means you can have confidence that we offer high standards of practice management and excellent customer service.
Finally, we always welcome any enquiries from new and existing clients. We care deeply about the people we represent and will always consider your case on its own merits to get you the best possible outcome from your claim.
The service I was given was excellent. I had no problem with getting in touch with my solicitor or a member of staff at any time. They were always extremely helpful. I would like to thank all the staff for their time and effort they have put in for me.
Extremely helpful throughout the process, very polite & courteous, explained in detail anything I needed to know, would definitely recommend them to my family & friends.
I would like to thank you so much for all the hard work that you put into my case which was complex and challenging. You were always professional, polite, and efficient but also had that human touch which was most welcome, especially when having to discuss personal medical information.
Thank you to your company. I will be recommending Sheldon Davidson's as I have found you more than helpful and very quick
You have done an outstanding job in dealing with my claim and treated both myself and my wife in a totally professional manner
I would recommend Sheldon Davidson 100% as you can be assured you will always get the best service possible.
Excellent advice always kept me up to date with everything I would recommend them to anyone
Both Victoria and Michelle have been a massive help to me, more like family.
I have been very happy with all the help your staff have given me during my claim.
All of your staff have been very friendly and helpful in every way and keeping me up to date with my claim
Jill has been fantastic. I felt I could speak to her at any point and she explained the facts very well to me .always polite and pleasant. thankyou Jill
Jill was very professional from the moment she took over the case
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Excellent service from start to finish
You truly exceeded my expectations with your superb service, knowledge and smooth completion of my difficult situation.
Thank you for the handling of my claim! You exceeded my expectations. Great service. Great outcome.
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