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Cerebral Palsy Lawsuit

Hospitalized newbornThe last thing that any parent wants to think about in the weeks and months following the birth of child are treatment costs, lawyer consultations, doctor depositions, and other necessary steps in filing a cerebral palsy lawsuit in Los Angeles. The attorneys at Ellis Injury Law understand the devastating effect that serious birth injuries like cerebral palsy can have on families, especially when those injuries could have been avoided if medical professionals had only provided a reasonable standard of care.

Cerebral palsy lawyers at Ellis Law can help grieving families

If you believe mistakes or negligence on the part of doctors, nurses, or other hospital employees caused your child to suffer birth injuries that led to the development of brain damage, nerve damage and/or cerebral palsy, we urge you to contact one of our firm as soon as possible for a free and confidential consultation. Your child may be entitled to substantial compensation for pain and suffering, loss of quality of life, and a lifetime’s worth of specialized medical care and treatment.

Proving that malpractice took place, and that it was a direct cause of your child’s injuries, is not always easy. The Los Angeles birth injury lawyers at Ellis Law have over two decades of experience successfully litigating delivery room malpractice cases. We are committed to fighting for the right of innocent children who were victimized by needless errors on the part of doctors and other healthcare personnel.

Let us put our substantial expertise and investigative resources to work for you. Ellis Injury Law employs in-house nurses and delivery room protocol experts that can review medical records and hospital reports for signs of substandard care, and testify on your behalf in court if the case comes to trial. Our clients pay us nothing unless we secure a settlement or verdict in their favor, and we spare no expense in building the strongest case possible.

Remember that the law in California is on the side of victims. Let our personal injury attorneys help you and your child take full advantage of your legal rights and win the compensation you justly deserve.

What is cerebral palsy?

Cerebral palsy (CP) is a group of permanent disorders that affect the development of movement and posture caused by damage to the infant brain. This injury causes difficulties in thinking, learning, feeling and engaging in social behavior, which are often accompanied by epilepsy and vision problems. While there isn’t always a definitive cause, in some cases cerebral palsy is caused by poor prenatal care or trauma during the birth process (including the use of vacuum forceps).

There is no cure for CP and lifelong support is necessary for sufferers. The disorder is classified into different types including spastic, dyskinetic, ataxic, hypotonic, and mixed.

Cerebral palsy is not common, but by no means is it a rare injury either. According to the March of Dimes, for every 1,000 live births in the United States, 3 cases of CP are reported. The most common factor for CP is premature birth—however, full term babies can develop CP if there is hypoxia or asphyxia during the delivery.

If the hypoxia or asphyxia could have been prevented, this is a serious malpractice issue. In many cases, the doctor should have identified the possibility of oxygen deprivation and taken measures to prevent it.

Diagnosing cerebral palsy

Cerebral palsy must be diagnosed by a trained neurological specialist (or a specialty pediatrician). The medical professional will diagnose muscle tone issues, paralysis, movement abnormalities, seizures, hearing loss, vision issues and other common signs.

Diagnostic testing is often performed after a child has failed to meet developmental milestones. Many of the signs of CP, especially coordination and muscle tone, don’t present until after the child is a year of age.

Important facts about cerebral palsy: 

  • Cerebral palsy isn’t always diagnosed in infancy. Cases often get identified at age 2 to 3.
  • It isn’t a progressive injury. The condition will remain the same over time.
  • Asphyxia and head trauma are major factors linked to CP, although infection and premature birth are also linked.
  • 80% of all CP cases are spastic in nature.
  • Estimates put the number of new CP cases in the United States at around 10,000 per year.
  • 80% of all CP cases develop before a child is 1 month of age.
  • It is estimated that 10% of all CP cases are due to malpractice shortly before or during labor.
  • The costs associated with CP often reach into the millions of dollars over a lifetime.

Cases in California

In June 2011, the largest cerebral palsy settlement in California history was reached on behalf of a child with both kernicterus and cerebral palsy. The $10 million settlement was a landmark case because California law often imposes a $250,000 limit to general medical negligence cases.

In another recent case, a verdict in the amount of $5.9 million was granted to a young child who nearly died after suffocating in her mother’s womb. She survived, but the lack of oxygen caused severe injury and CP.

If your child has been diagnosed with cerebral palsy due to birth injuries, there is a chance that negligence is to blame. It is in only less than 2% of all cases is there a genetic component that can be identified as the cause. Because the lifetime cost of raising a child with cerebral palsy has been estimated to be over $12.5 million, many cases filed on behalf of a child with CP in California end with verdicts or settlements in this range.

Call Ellis Law to learn more about filing a cerebral palsy lawsuit

If you think your child suffered a birth injury resulting in cerebral palsy, contact us at Ellis Law. We offer free case reviews for all prospective clients in the L.A. area. There are never any upfront costs to you, and we never collect a fee unless you recover compensation at trial or through a settlement. Call toll-free: 1.800 INJURED (800-465-8733) or locally at (310) 641-3335 and schedule your no-obligation consultation today.