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Birth Injury Solicitors

We understand the devastating effects a birth injury can have on a family, primarily if the injury was caused by medical negligence. Our experienced birth injury solicitors can guide you through the entire legal process while you and your family recover.

Table of Contents

    What is a birth injury?

    During the birthing process, a baby or the mother may suffer a physical injury. This is called birth trauma or birth injury and may be due to the mismanagement of the delivery or the failure to cope with a medical emergency adequately. While these injuries can be a consequence of several causes, many are due to preventable errors and/or medical negligence on the part of obstetric doctors or midwives.

    Not all birth injuries in Ireland are apparent immediately after birth. Some will not manifest for months or years after your child has been born and can be caused by genetic or teratogenic factors (smoking while pregnant, excessive drinking, diabetes, etc).

    Birth Injury claim types

    Although cerebral palsy is the most prevalent birth injury claim, there are numerous other sorts of birth injuries, such as various degrees of brain damage, scarring, or damage suffered during assisted delivery (e.g., forceps).

    Birth injuries during pregnancy

    • Maternal diabetes or gestation diabetes
    • Pre-eclampsia
    • Uterine rupture and placental abruption
    • Wrongful birth cases

    Birth injuries during labour

    Birth injuries due to medical negligence

    1. Injury to the baby

    When discussing birth injuries caused by medical negligence, it is important to determine if the injury to the baby resulted from the negligence of a third party. Such injuries can have long-lasting medical complications for the newborn, impacting their quality of life. Some common types of birth injuries caused by medical negligence include:

    • Brain damage: This can occur due to perinatal asphyxia, where the newborn does not receive enough oxygen during the birth process. Brain damage can lead to conditions such as cerebral palsy, seizures, and developmental delays.
    • Hip dysplasia: Improper handling or positioning of the baby during delivery can lead to hip dysplasia, a condition where the hip joint is not properly aligned.
    • Erb’s palsy: Also known as Brachial Plexus Injury, this is damage to the nerves that send signals from the spine to the shoulder, arm, and hand. It can occur when excessive force is applied during delivery, leading to weakness or paralysis in the affected arm.
    • Spinal cord injuries: Improper handling of the baby during delivery can result in spinal cord injuries, which may cause permanent disability or paralysis.
    • Fractures: Fractures to the collarbone, arm, or skull can occur due to excessive force or improper use of delivery instruments like forceps or vacuum extractors.
    • Untreated jaundice and kernicterus: Failure to diagnose and treat jaundice in a timely manner can lead to the development of kernicterus, a rare but serious condition that affects the baby’s brain.

    2. Injury to the mother

    Injuries to the mother can occur before, during, or after childbirth as a result of medical negligence. Inadequate medical care can lead to various complications, including:

    • Pregnancy malpractice/maternal birth injuries: Mismanagement of the pregnancy can result in complications for the mother, such as pre-eclampsia, eclampsia, or other pregnancy-related disorders.
    • Complications caused by forceps delivery: Improper use of forceps during delivery can cause injuries to the mother, including vaginal tears or lacerations, pelvic injuries, or bladder and bowel injuries.
    • Abnormal bleeding: Medical negligence can contribute to excessive bleeding after childbirth, leading to complications such as anemia or the need for blood transfusions.
    • Ruptured uterus: Improper management of labor or failure to perform a timely cesarean section can result in a ruptured uterus, a life-threatening condition for the mother and baby.
    • Nerve damage: Improper positioning or manipulation during delivery can cause nerve damage, resulting in long-term pain, numbness, or loss of function.
    • Psychological complications: Medical negligence during childbirth can lead to post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) for the mother, causing significant emotional distress.

    Birth injury causes

    Birth injuries can arise from various causes, and when they occur due to medical negligence, it further exacerbates the situation. Some common causes of birth injuries caused by medical negligence include:

    • Incorrect interpretation of ultrasound results, leading to failure to identify potential complications.
    • Failure to perform necessary tests and examinations during pregnancy, resulting in undiagnosed conditions or risks.
    • Prescription of incorrect medication during pregnancy, which can have adverse effects on the baby.
    • Inadequate monitoring of the baby’s heart rate during labor, potentially missing signs of distress.
    • Improper use of forceps or other delivery instruments, causing trauma to the baby or mother.
    • Delayed or improper response to emergency situations during childbirth, leading to preventable complications.

    The claim process

    1. Consult our Birth Injury Solicitors

    It is advisable for you to speak to an experienced team of Birth Injury Solicitors as soon as possible if you believe that you were not provided with an adequate or appropriate level of medical care, which resulted in you sustaining an injury or illness.

    2. We obtain your medical records

    After the consultation with your Birth Injury Solicitor, he/she will request access to your medical records and engage an independent medical expert to assess your records. The purpose of engaging an independent expert is to establish whether there was any negligence on the part of the medical professional.

    3. The medical negligence litigation process

    Where the independent medical expert is of the professional opinion that medical negligence did occur, upon your instructions, your solicitor will commence the process of issuing legal proceedings in Court against the medical professional and/or hospital.

    Statute of Limitation

    The legal time limit to make a birth injury claim is two years from the date of injury or date of knowledge that the injury or illness resulted from medical negligence. For children/minors, the time limit expires two years after their 18th birthday. You may contact a birth injury solicitor to discuss your case to advise of the Statute of Limitations applicable to your case. Learn more about the time limit in relation to your case.

    Contact our team

    Coleman Legal LLP Team

    At Coleman Legal LLP, we pride ourselves on our 30 years of collective experience as birth injury solicitors in Ireland. Medical negligence claims are a significant part of our caseload, and our team possesses exceptional experience and a deep understanding of this area. When you consult with us, we provide comprehensive advice tailored to your case, ensuring you are guided through the legal process with the utmost sensitivity and support at every step.

    We understand the emotional and physical toll birth injuries can have on individuals and their families. As such, our team is committed to providing both support and sensitivity throughout the entire legal journey. Suppose you believe that you have suffered due to medical negligence. In that case, whether it’s a result of inadequate treatment, misdiagnosis, delayed diagnosis, or any other related issues, we are here to assess your situation and determine if you have a case against another party. Our birth injury solicitors at Coleman Legal LLP have a wealth of experience in handling a wide range of cases, including:

    1. Negligently handled births

    We have successfully represented clients who have suffered injuries or complications due to medical negligence during childbirth. Our team understands the intricacies of these cases and can effectively navigate the legal process to seek justice and compensation for you and your family.

    2. Problems not detected during pregnancy

    If you have experienced harm or adverse outcomes because medical professionals failed to identify potential issues during pregnancy, we can help. Our birth injury solicitors deeply understand the standard of care expected during prenatal examinations.

    3. Failure to detect serious abnormalities pre-birth

    When medical professionals have missed or misinterpreted significant abnormalities during prenatal screenings, resulting in harm to you or your child, we can provide the necessary legal support. Our birth injury solicitors will work diligently to establish negligence and seek appropriate compensation for the consequences you have endured.

    4. Errors during antenatal care

    We are here to assist you if you suffer harm or adverse effects due to errors or omissions in antenatal care.

    5. Injury due to medical instruments and anaesthetics or inadequate suturing

    If you or your child has experienced an injury as a result of medical instruments, anaesthesia administration, or inadequate suturing, our experienced birth injury solicitors are well-equipped to handle your claim. We understand the complexities involved in such cases and will fight tirelessly to secure the justice and compensation you are entitled to.

    To speak with one of our dedicated Birth Injury Solicitors, please call our toll-free number 1800-844-104, or alternatively, you can fill out our online enquiry form. We are here to provide you with the guidance and legal representation you need during this challenging time.

    Coleman Legal LLP

    84 Talbot Street, Dublin 1
    D01 YX60
    DX 112002

    Contact Details

    Free Phone: 1800-844-104
    Fax: (01) 5312727
    Email: [email protected]
    Online Enquiry Form: Apply

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    Clodagh Magennis

    Clodagh Magennis

    Head of Client Services

    P: 1800-844-104
    E: [email protected]

    ”At Coleman Legal, excellence in customer care is paramount. We aim to meet both prospective and existing client’s needs in a professional, engaging, and friendly manner with a clear objective to give quality legal advice and reach a positive outcome.”

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