A hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy attorney in Illinois can assist you legally after a birth injury. During birth, some complications can put both the child’s and the mother’s life at risk. If the attending physicians don’t act promptly, the child may suffer a birth injury such as hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy (HIE) and, in a worst-case scenario, loss of life.
If your child suffered hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy at birth due to medical negligence in Chicago or the rest of Illinois, you could sue the hospital or the doctors for negligence and medical malpractice. An experienced birth injury lawyer in Illinois can help you claim maximum compensation to help with your child’s medical bills.
For a free legal consultation, call 1-800-222-9529
What to Do When Your Child Suffers HIE Due to Negligence
When your child suffers a brain injury, the first course of action is to ensure they get the medical care they require. You can also talk with the attending physicians and nurses to get a clear explanation of what caused your child’s injury.
If your child was diagnosed with hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy, some online resources can help you get through these difficult times, such as a caregiver guide for children with neurological conditions and their relatives. Still, you should contact a group of experienced birth injury attorneys to evaluate your case and advise how to proceed.
Illinois Hypoxic Ischemic Encephalopathy Lawyer Near Me 1-800-222-9529
Why You Need an Attorney for Your Hypoxic-Ischemic Encephalopathy Case
HIE cases are complex and can drag on in court for several years, expending resources and causing more emotional distress. The case requires an experienced HIE lawyer, knowledgeable in law and medicine and willing to dedicate their time and resources to fight for you and your child.
Your attorney will need to investigate the circumstances surrounding your child’s birth by going through all the medical records and interviewing all medical personnel present at the time.
Many factors can cause HIE, and your Illinois birth injury attorney will be tasked with proving that your child’s injury was due to negligence by the doctors, nurses, or the hospital.
Legal Procedure in an HIE Case
The first thing your lawyer can do is gather evidence to support the negligence claim. For a case to have any merit, evidence must show or at least allude to the fact that an offense occurred. Your lawyer can then assess your damages to determine compensation and then proceed to file the paperwork.
Negotiation with the at-fault hospital’s insurance follows, where your lawyer presents evidence to prove your baby’s disability was caused by a birth Injury and provides a settlement offer. The insurance company representative can either accept the offer, refuse, or negotiate, depending on the weight of the evidence against them.
If they refuse to settle, your lawyer can take the case to court and represent you, where a judge or the jury may decide the outcome.
Proving Liability in an Hypoxic-Ischemic Encephalopathy Case
For a hospital to be charged with negligence in a hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy case, the plaintiff has to prove beyond reasonable doubt that the baby’s injuries resulted from negligence and that the “accident” could have been avoided if the physicians or nurses provide better care.
A hospital is liable for negligence in an HIE case in the following situations:
- Doctors failed to notice fetal distress
- Failure to recommend c-section on time
- Nurses ignored the mother’s complaints and distress warnings
It’s important to check the medical records at the time of the child’s birth to determine what went on and if there were any indicators of encephalopathy, such as:
- Need for resuscitation
- Presence of seizures
- Cord and fetal gas pH levels
- Abnormality in the baby’s reflexes
Talk to a birth injury lawyer as soon as possible to determine the best course of action for your claim and your baby’s future treatment.
What Is the Statute of Limitations for a Hypoxic-Ischemic Encephalopathy Case in Illinois?
The statute of limitations for filing an HIE case in Illinois is eight years from the date of the child’s injury. However, in certain cases, the effects of hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy don’t show until much later in the child’s life. In such cases, under Illinois law, you can file a case till the child turns 22 years old.
However, it is important to talk to an attorney as soon as you find out or when you have a strong suspicion. Your lawyer may need to conduct a private investigation, and evidence in medical malpractice claims tend to disappear almost immediately.
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Damages and Compensation in an Illinois HIE Case
Raising a kid with hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy can be challenging in many ways. For instance, medical treatments tend to be expensive. But special education and permanent nurse care may also be necessary.
Nevertheless, filing an insurance claim or a lawsuit can help you get the necessary resources to care for your baby’s needs. In most hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy cases, we tend to recover economic and non-economic damages for our clients.
Economic and Non-economic Damages in a Hypoxic-Ischemic Encephalopathy Case
Economic damages in an Illinois HIE case include medical and long-term care bills for taking care of the child, i.e., physiotherapy and other treatment therapies.
Non-economic damages are awarded based on the victim’s level of pain and suffering. Children who suffer from hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy at birth have to live with a disability for the rest of their lives, and their caregivers experience heavy emotional distress for taking care of them.
Controversial Non-economic Damages Compensation in Illinois
According to Illinois laws, non-economic damages in personal injury cases were initially capped at $500,000. The initial cap was set in 1995 and overturned by the Supreme Court in 1997 as unconstitutional. That is because the cap was deemed unfair to victims whose damages exceeded the set cap.
The cap was again reinstated in 2005, back to $500,000 and an additional $500,000 for cases against hospitals. The cap was later overturned, and the decision was left to judges and juries to determine the right compensation for injured victims.
HIE lawsuits have been awarded compensation in the tens and sometimes hundreds of millions of dollars, depending on the severity of economic and non-economic damages.
Punitive Damages in Illinois
Usually no punitive damages are awarded in Illinois medical malpractice cases, including HIE cases. Punitive damages are only awarded in cases where the defendant was deemed to be acting with malice or extreme negligence, and they can only be quantified and decided by a judge or jury.
Hypoxic-Ischemic Encephalopathy Explained by an Illinois Attorney
Hypoxic-Ischemic Encephalopathy is a condition that can develop due to a lack of oxygen or reduced blood flow. However, in most cases, it occurs due to medical malpractice. Babies that suffer from Hypoxic-Ischemic Encephalopathy can develop cerebral palsy or other neurological conditions.
A birth injury can change the life of an entire household. Children with neurological conditions require specialized care, house modifications, and decades of expensive rehabilitation treatments. But you may be entitled to pursue damages if a birth injury caused those conditions.
The Link Between Ischemic Encephalopathy and Cerebral Palsy
Some circumstances during delivery can cause oxygen deprivation or reduce the blood flow, which can cause hypotension or even cardiac arrest. There are many conditions a newborn can develop under those circumstances, such as Hypoxic-Ischemic Encephalopathy and cerebral palsy.
Many cases of Hypoxic-Ischemic Encephalopathy and cerebral palsy are caused by asphyxia due to a birth injury. Therefore, you may be eligible to pursue compensatory damages for your baby’s condition, emotional damages, and lifelong care. Talk to a birth injury lawyer to get answers to all your legal questions.
Hypoxic-Ischemic Encephalopathy and Medical Malpractice
Even though some cases can develop due to genetic or prenatal conditions, most Hypoxic-Ischemic Encephalopathy cases result from medical malpractice. Doctors and medical staff may be liable, but you can also be a victim of negligence and malpractice in nursing. You may be entitled to damages if someone else’s negligence caused your baby’s injury.
Medical malpractice claims are an everyday occurrence for hospitals, doctors, their insurance, and attorneys. Claiming damages for a birth injury can be challenging for the victims due to those circumstances, but an experienced legal firm can guide you through the complex claim process.
Contact a Hypoxic-Ischemic Encephalopathy Lawyer in Illinois Today
Your child may have suffered hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy due to medical staff malpractices or the hospital’s negligence. In such a case, you may be eligible to pursue compensatory damages through an insurance claim or a jury’s verdict.
An experienced Illinois hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy lawyer at Birth Injury Lawyers Group can help you. We understand how expensive and emotionally scarring your child’s treatment and long-term care can be, so we can answer all your questions at no cost. Contact us today for a free case consultation.