If your child has suffered an avoidable injury due to being deprived of oxygen in the womb, you may be able to make a claim for brain damage due to asphyxia. Successfully recovering compensation for asphyxia in the womb will provide the funds that your child will need in order to secure their care and support for the rest of their lives.
However, in order for your claim to be successful, it will be necessary to prove that a medical professional or an agent of a health facility failed in their duty of care and “at the time and in the circumstances” were negligent by either act or omission.
Proof of negligence is usually achieved by investigating the standard of care provided before, during and after the birth of your child. Your solicitor will engage the services of an independent medical expert, who will review your medical records to see if “on the balance of probabilities” your child´s injuries could have been avoided with great care.
Making a Claim for Brain Damage due to Asphyxia
Once negligence is established, your solicitor will send a “Letter of Claim” to the authority responsible for the hospital at which your child was born (usually an NHS Trust). The letter will explain that you are claiming compensation for asphyxia in the womb due to medical negligence and be supported by the evidence of negligence collected by the independent medical expert.
The health authority has ninety days in which to respond to the Letter of Claim with either an acknowledgement of its liability or a defence against your claim for brain damage due to asphyxia. If your claim is accepted, your solicitor will enter into negotiations with the health authority to agree a settlement of compensation for asphyxia in the womb.
If the claim for brain damage due to asphyxia is contested, your solicitor will consider the health authority´s defence against the strength of your claim and likely issue court proceedings. Once court proceedings are issued, this does not necessarily mean that you will have to attend a court hearing to resolve your claim. Settlements of compensation for asphyxia in the womb are often negotiated before scheduled hearings take place.
How Much Compensation for Asphyxia in the Womb?
How much compensation for asphyxia in the womb your claim will be settled for depends on the nature and extent of your child´s brain injuries and the impact they will have on his or her life – and yours. When you make a claim for brain damage due to asphyxia, your solicitor will consider many factors, including the pain and suffering that your child has experienced, the deterioration in their quality of life and their future loss of opportunities and income.
The largest proportion of the settlement is reserved for your child´s future care needs. For this reason compensation for asphyxia in the womb is normally paid as a lump sum plus annual index-linked payments, which can be adjusted if your child´s condition deteriorates and they need a greater level of care and support.
Although it was mentioned above that you would not usually have to attend a court hearing to resolve your child´s claim for brain damage due to asphyxia, a hearing will be necessary at the conclusion of your claim. This is because any settlement of compensation for asphyxia in the womb has to be approved by a judge to ensure it is in the child´s best interests. This is normally a brief hearing, during which time you will receive a formal apology from the hospital responsible for your child´s brain injuries.
Legal Advice about Making a Claim for Brain Damage due to Asphyxia
If you would like to know more about making a claim for brain damage due to asphyxia, you are invited to call our Medical Negligence Advice Bureau and discuss the circumstances surrounding your child´s birth with an experienced medical negligence solicitor.
The solicitor will be able to answer any questions you may have about claiming compensation for asphyxia in the womb and guide you through the processes of establishing negligence and claiming compensation from the health authority as they apply in your child´s unique situation.
Please note that there is no obligation on you to proceed with a claim for brain damage due to asphyxia when you use our service, and all calls to our Medical Negligence Advice Bureau are completely confidential. You have enough to worry about if your child has sustained a brain injury due to asphyxia in the womb. Let us deal with establishing negligence so that we can advise you whether there is a claim for brain damage due to asphyxia which may be worth your while to pursue.