Hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy, also known as birth asphyxia and perinatal asphyxia, is a condition in which a baby’s oxygen levels are restricted before, during, or immediately after birth. It can have severe and permanent effects on the child’s health and future, and it may be caused by medical malpractice.
If your child suffers from HIE, get in touch with a compassionate Mississippi hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy lawyer as soon as possible. Attorneys can help you compile a strong case, negotiate with opposing counsel, and fight for the compensation your child deserves.
For a free legal consultation, call 1-800-222-9529
Could Someone Have Caused Your Child’s HIE?
Hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy can occur naturally, unfortunately. However, it can also be caused by the direct action or inaction of medical care providers. Depending on the circumstances of your cases, multiple parties may share some or all of the blame for your child’s birth injury.
Lawyers in Mississippi with experience in HIE cases can help you comb through the evidence and details of your claim in order to determine who to sue. Such parties could include:
- Medical care providers (doctors, nurses, etc.)
- Birth attendants (doulas, midwives, etc.)
- Medical organizations (hospitals, birth centers, etc.)
- Manufacturers of defective medical equipment
Hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy can be caused by the use of too much force during delivery, by a failure to diagnose risk factors prior to delivery, or by using out-of-date or faulty medical devices during delivery, among other causes.
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Compensation in Mississippi Hypoxic Ischemic Encephalopathy Cases
The goal of the civil justice system is to provide those who have been harmed with the monetary remuneration they need to recover and live a successful, fulfilled life to the fullest extent possible. To this end, the court will attach dollar amounts to your child’s damages, splitting the damages into those that are strictly financial and those that are considered non-economic.
All the ways that your child’s future finances and your family’s current finances are affected by this injury are included in the list of economic damages. These can be items such as:
- Medical bills related to the birth injury, both now and in the future
- Your child’s lost earning potential as a result of this injury
- Lost wages as a result of having to care for your baby
- The cost of accessibility equipment you need to install in your home
These are usually the simpler forms of damage to calculate, as they come with prices, receipts, or bills attached.
All the more subjective ways that your child is affected by their hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy are considered non-economic damages. These also deserve compensation. However, Mississippi Code § 11-1-60 limits compensation you can receive for non-economic damages to $500,000 (though this can be moved up to $1 million in some cases).
Non-economic harms include items like:
- Your child’s physical pain
- Your child’s mental or emotional suffering
- Loss of quality of life for your child
It’s often a good idea to get in touch with experienced Mississippi hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy attorneys when determining how much you and your child are owed. Calculating non-economic damage values can be difficult, especially when you are not used to the formulas used by the legal system.
Mississippi HIE Lawyers Help You Meet the Filing Deadline
According to Mississippi Code § 15-1-36, the statute of limitations for medical malpractice claims in Mississippi is set at two years from the date of the initial injury. This means that you only have two years to file a lawsuit for compensation before your right to pursue legal action expires.
Two years may seem like a long time, but putting together a strong claim can be an arduous task. This is especially true when you are dealing with the grief associated with a birth injury and need to spend significant amounts of time caring for your newborn.
As knowledgeable lawyers, attorneys for hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy claims in Mississippi can handle all your paperwork and make sure that your claim is filed on time.
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Who You Can File an HIE Claim Against in Mississippi
When you work with an attorney on your HIE claim, you receive vital information regarding who may be liable for the incident and what steps you should take to demonstrate liability.
Often, a care provider is responsible for the negligent decisions that led to oxygen deprivation and, ultimately, HIE. Your doctor may bear liability for:
- Failure to adequately monitor the mother and baby prior to the birth, leading to a failure to notice signs of oxygen deprivation
- Failure to respond to signs of oxygen deprivation in the infant before or during delivery
- Failure to initiate proper interventions to protect the life of the mother and child
Doctors may still be liable if they are not directly employed by the hospital. In cases where the doctor is personally liable for the HIE, you will need to pursue compensation through their medical malpractice insurance.
Several people, including your doctor and multiple nurses, are responsible for your care in the hospital during labor and delivery. The specific hospital where the incident occurred will often bear primary liability for an act of negligence. If the doctor is an employee of the hospital, rather than a contractor who has permission to practice there, the hospital may be directly responsible for your child’s HIE and the associated damages.
The hospital is also liable when a nurse’s error during or after childbirth leads to HIE. For example, a nurse might have failed to notice a baby’s heart rate dropping or other clear signs of distress during labor.
Just like when you pursue compensation from a doctor directly, a claim against a hospital will need to go through its medical malpractice insurance.
What Your Mississippi HIE Attorney Needs to Prove
Medical malpractice claims are notoriously difficult, especially given that you are going up against large corporations like hospitals and birth centers. Plus, the law seeks to protect medical care providers from lawsuits when possible, so the level of evidence required is quite high.
In general, your attorney will need to provide evidence that shows that the at-fault party in your case broke from the nationally accepted standard of care. This means showing the following elements:
- Testimony from expert witnesses regarding the standard of care
- Evidence that the caregivers in your delivery did not meet this standard of care
- Evidence that links the caregivers’ breach of the standard of care with your child’s hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy
- The total amount of damages your child has suffered due to this birth injury
Typically, Mississippi HIE lawyers bring in physicians as expert witnesses to testify about the behavior of the medical staff in your case. When discussing the standard of care, attorneys must show that the medical care providers present at your baby’s birth did not act in ways that a reasonable caregiver should act in the same circumstances.
A Mississippi Hypoxic Ischemic Encephalopathy Attorney Can Help With Your Claim
If your child suffers from HIE due to the events prior to, during, or immediately after delivery, a Mississippi hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy lawyer can assist with your claim in several ways.
Learn About the Compensation Your Family Can Expect
As with many types of birth injuries, HIE can lead to substantial financial losses for your entire family. You may need to spend much more time than anticipated on your child’s care. One parent may have to give up their job to ensure the highest possible level of care for the family.
You need to know how much compensation your family can expect so you can maximize it as you deal with the medical malpractice insurance company.
Without an idea of how much compensation you’re entitled to, you could end up stuck with a low settlement offer, which could prevent you from obtaining the funds you need to face this new challenge. A Mississippi hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy lawyer can help you understand exactly what to expect as you move through the claims process.
Establish Your Right to Compensation
To receive compensation for your child’s HIE diagnosis, you need evidence of the doctor’s negligence. A Mississippi hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy attorney can establish negligence by helping you collect evidence related to the incident and defining critical actions the doctor failed to take.
Get Help in Your Fight
Caring for a child with disabilities is demanding. Your expectations for the future need to shift, and your family encounters many unique challenges. A lawyer can ease some of your stress and aid in the fight for the compensation your family needs after a serious birth injury. They can also provide answers to common questions about your claim and your right to compensation.
Speak With Mississippi Hypoxic Ischemic Encephalopathy Attorneys for FREE
The Birth Injury Lawyers Group was founded by attorney Robert Goldwater, whose triplets were affected by birth injuries related to their premature birth. We are intimately familiar with the emotions that come with suffering birth injuries like hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy, and we fight with all we have to provide families with the compensation and justice they deserve.
Our Mississippi HIE attorneys are ready to hear from you, connect with you, and learn how we can help you. We provide all clients with a FREE consultation to discuss the details of each claim. To schedule your appointment, call today or fill out the form on our contact page.