New York Birth Injury Attorneys

Pursue the Relief Your Family Deserves

When having a child, the last thing parents want or need to worry about is the possibility of their baby being harmed during the delivery. While most births go smoothly, some have complications. Birth injuries can range from minor, like bruising, to a life-altering diagnosis of cerebral palsy.

If your child was injured at birth, contact Rheingold, Giuffra, Ruffo & Plotkin LLP to learn more about your legal options. Your choice of attorney to represent your interests during a birth injury case could mean the difference between successful negotiations or expensive, ongoing litigation. Our accomplished lawyers have extensive experience handling claims involving brain damaged babies, cerebral palsy and other consequences of obstetrical malpractice and are here to help you explore your legal options.

Our advocates are ready to assist you during this difficult time. Call (888) 260-0473 to schedule an intial consultation today.

Types of birth injuries

Birth injuries vary in severity and type. While many will correct themselves within the first months to year after delivery, not all of them do. In serious cases, the baby can suffer permanent injury. Many birth injuries result from the delivery itself as the baby makes its way down the birth canal, but others occur when the treating physician fails to adequately assess or respond to complications during a woman's pregnancy or delivery.

Some types of birth injuries include:

  • Forcep injuries — lacerations, bruising
  • Subconjunctival hemorrhage — burst blood vessels in the baby's eye that normally clear up
  • Caput succedaneum — bruising or swelling of the baby's scalp
  • Cephalohematoma — collection of blood under the baby's periosteum, a tissue that covers the bones in the head
  • Facial paralysis — caused by excessive pressure on the face during delivery
  • Fractures — of the collarbone, limbs or head
  • Erb's palsy — stretching or tearing of the nerves that control movement in the arms, hands and fingers
  • Cerebral palsy — damage to the areas of the brain that control muscle function and movement, can be caused by a lack of oxygen during delivery.

Birth injuries are different from birth defects. Birth injuries occur during difficult deliveries in which something goes wrong — whether the child is in a breech position, is too large to move through the birth canal or suffers some other distress. Birth defects are caused by some factor before or during pregnancy, such as a genetic disorder, the mother's use of illegal drugs, alcohol or tobacco, or by some prescription medications.

Responsible parties

In a birth injury case, several parties may share liability for the injury to your child. The doctor or team of doctors who delivered the child may be liable for failing to follow the standard of care during your delivery. The hospital, nurses and other care providers, such as interns, residents, techs and nursing aids, also may be named parties for their actions. If the doctor is part of a private practice, the practice also may be named in the suit in certain situations.

If a medication prescribed by your doctor and correctly taken by you led to a birth injury or birth defect, the manufacturer of the medication may be named in a products liability suit. Your New York birth injury lawyer can help determine which parties may be subject to liability based upon the facts and laws governing your situation.

Proving a birth injury case

To prevail in a birth injury case, the plaintiff must prove:

  • The appropriate standard of care (the type of care and skill provided by the average doctor in the same or similar circumstances)
  • The doctor failed to adhere to the established standard of care
  • The child suffered a birth injury
  • But for the doctor's failure to adhere to the standard of care, the child would not have been injured

The plaintiff must show that it is more likely than not that the birth injury occurred because of the doctor's acts or omissions during the birth of the child. Failure on the part of the plaintiff to prove any one of these elements will result in the plaintiff losing his or her case.

Our team is ready to help you assess the circumstances of your case. Contact our offices today to get started.

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