People with cerebral palsy and their families/caregivers face trials in areas that the average person may take for granted. In some cases, CP is caused by negligence on the part of medical professionals providing care to a mother and baby before, during, and immediately after delivery. Because of the high costs associated with the care of a person with CP throughout their lifetime, when CP is attributable to mistakes made by medical professionals, seeking legal recourse could provide the compensation needed to pay for that care. If you live in or around Columbia, South Carolina, consulting a Columbia cerebral palsy lawyer may be a wise option.

Understanding the Negligence-Related Causes of CP

CP is caused by abnormal brain development or damage to the developing brain, affecting a person’s ability to control their muscles. Sometimes, that abnormal development or damage is caused by negligent actions on the part of medical providers.

There are numerous possible causes of cerebral palsy, and sometimes there are signs that a medical error could have played a role. Some of those signs are:

  • Failure to detect or properly treat an infection
  • Failure to detect concerning changes in fetal heart rate and act accordingly
  • Failure to advise a medically necessary C-section when labor complications arise
  • Failure to schedule or perform a medically advisable C-section
  • Failure to detect a prolapsed umbilical cord
  • Improper use of delivery tools, such as vacuum extractors and forceps
  • Improper resuscitation

The symptoms of CP vary from person to person, and they may become more apparent over time. So, even if negligent care before, during, or immediately after delivery is to blame for an infant’s CP, the condition or its severity may not become known for some time afterwards.

Determining the unique circumstances of your child’s CP can help you decide whether legal recourse is possible for you. If you suspect your child’s injury may have been the result of medical negligence or malpractice, seek the help of an experienced Columbia CP attorney.

Cost of CP for Individuals and Their Families

As each case of CP is unique, the degree of long-term care and delayed development will vary from child to child. But the financial stresses of providing specialized care, mobility equipment, physical therapy for motor skills development, and personal care are immense across the board.

The Mayo Clinic explains that some people with cerebral palsy can have problems swallowing and commonly have eye muscle imbalance, in which the eyes don’t focus on the same object. They also might have reduced range of motion at various joints due to muscle stiffness. Epilepsy, blindness, or deafness also might be present.

Cerebral palsy’s effect on function varies greatly. A person with severe CP might need to use special equipment to walk, or might not be able to walk at all and might need lifelong care. Most people with cerebral palsy and their families and caregivers face challenges in creating a healthy life.

The care required to maintain a healthy life can be overwhelming for people with severe CP, as well as their families and caretakers, with tremendous lifetime costs. That’s why, in cases where medical negligence is suspected, hiring an attorney with experience representing individuals and families of individuals with CP is essential. If you live in or near Columbia, South Carolina, finding a Columbia CP lawyer is the first step in seeking the compensation needed to cover the costs of birth injuries resulting in CP.

How a Columbia CP Lawyer Can Help

Legal representation is a critical element in your pursuit of compensation to help provide for your child. A Columbia, SC lawyer who understands the conditions can help individuals with CP and their families address:

  • Medical and other care costs. This compensation includes the past, current, and future costs of a child’s medical care. Visits to physicians, specialists, and therapists, as well as the costs of medical procedures, make up a portion of this amount. This category may also include in-home care providers to assist with day-to-day needs (both now and for the rest of an individual’s life), equipment to increase accessibility and mobility, and prescriptions and other necessities for the individual’s care, both now and in the future.
  • Loss of earning capacity. This applies not just to the person with CP, but also potentially to a parent who leaves the workforce in order to stay home to care for their child.
  • Diminished quality of life. The extent to which the quality of life of an individual with CP is diminished depends largely on the severity of the condition and their family’s ability to pay for and/or provide their care. However, when basic functions like walking and swallowing are affected, achieving any quality of life means being able to access round-the-clock personal care and an extensive list of medical services. What’s more, it’s not just the person with CP’s quality of life that’s affected by the condition, as most families pay an emotional cost in providing the level of care necessitated by CP, as well as the financial cost that comes along with caring for someone with the condition.

Medical malpractice lawsuits tend to be complex, from both a medical and a legal standpoint. By getting in touch with a law firm that has experience with birth injuries and medical malpractice lawsuits, you will ensure that your case is being evaluated by experts in the field.

An experienced CP lawyer can:

  • Determine whether your unique circumstances are grounds for a potential case
  • Gather evidence and facilitate the interpretation of medical records
  • Educate you on state laws in regard to medical malpractice
  • Take your case to trial, should a settlement offer be insufficient or nonexistent

The legal/medical team at Janet, Janet & Suggs has experience in representing many individuals with CP and their families, and are poised to help you determine whether you might have a case. When it comes to getting the compensation you deserve to meet the specialized needs of your child with CP in Columbia, South Carolina, it’s important to have the right team on your side.

With over 40 years of experience and more than $3 billion won for our clients, the Cerebral Palsy Family Lawyers at JJS put families first, fighting on their behalf so they can focus on their child. JJS operates on a contingency fee basis, so you pay nothing unless you win. Contact us today to get the representation you need.

Was Your Child's CP Preventable?