What is cerebral palsy?
Cerebral palsy is a common physical disability in childhood. But, that doesn’t make it any easier for a child with the condition, or their parents, to manage. Discovering that your child’s cerebral palsy is potentially the result of a medical error can make your situation even more frustrating.
This life-long, irreversible condition is caused by damage to the developing brain in a foetus or young child. The disability affects a child’s movement and posture and to date, there is no known cure.
Each case is different. Some children develop a mild case and might experience a slight weakness in just one hand. However, if your child is severely affected by cerebral palsy, they might not be able to control any bodily function or movement and may require around the clock care.
Can medical negligence cause cerebral palsy?
The short answer is, yes. But, it’s important to know that there are many causes of cerebral palsy and it can be difficult to understand or prove how a medical error is to blame.
A very small percentage of cerebral palsy cases are due to avoidable complications before, during or after birth. These include where a midwife or obstetrician fails to:
- deliver the baby in a timely fashion
- diagnose a newborn baby with jaundice caused by an incompatible blood type with the mother
- diagnose and treat a pregnant mother with an infection.
Maurice Blackburn Lawyers are medical negligence experts. We can help you determine whether a medical error caused your child’s condition. We fight for you to claim the cerebral palsy compensation your family deserves.
Monetary compensation might not ever be able to replace your family’s quality of life, but the needs and future wellbeing of you and your family are always our top priority. We’ll work hard to make sure you receive the best possible outcome.
Your child's eligibility for a claim for cerebral palsy
It’s important to know that cerebral palsy is often unavoidable or not related to medical treatment. But, every child’s case is unique. So, understanding whether or not you have a valid claim will depend on your family’s individual circumstances.
If you believe your child’s case was caused by an unacceptable medical error, we can help.
Get in touch with your local Maurice Blackburn team as soon as possible as time limits often apply. For example, depending on which state you claim in, the law states you have three to six years from the date your child was damaged to lodge a claim.
Your dedicated cerebral palsy compensation lawyer will work with you, your medical team and other specialists to track down all the necessary facts of your case. This will help us ensure your family receives the total compensation you deserve and need.
How much compensation can you expect?
Compensation varies from family to family.
The sum your family is entitled to will depend on the severity of your child’s disability, their particular needs as well as the extent of the medical negligence uncovered.
Our goal is to ensure you receive enough to cover the costs of the best care, education, therapies and equipment your child needs.
Our team of medical negligence lawyers can advise you on how much your family could be entitled to after just a short conversation and a few phone calls.
The cerebral palsy compensation process
If you think you might have a cerebral palsy claim, this is the process:
- Contact us for an initial discussion
We’ll work around your schedule and set-up a free consultation with the most suitable lawyer to explore your situation.
- We research your case
We will obtain your and your child’s medical records and seek relevant expert medical opinions on your behalf.
- We explain our opinion to you
We will advise you if you have a claim as well as assess the level of compensation to which you are entitled.
- You decide whether to proceed
If you decide to claim for compensation we will prepare your case for mediation, always acting in your family’s best interest.
- Everyone goes to mediation
Mediation is where all the parties meet to discuss your claim and try to resolve the case.
Many cases are resolved in mediation. If your case is resolved during this step, your case ends here and we will work with you to ensure you receive the total amount of compensation agreed on.
- Your case may go to court
A minority of cases will proceed to court. If this is required we can guide you through the process and help you get the best possible result.
Your team of lawyers will keep you informed throughout the entire claim process. You can rest assured that every step will be explained to you in language that is simple and easy to understand.
Plus, Maurice Blackburn takes cases on a ‘no win, no fee’* basis. This means that if we don’t win your case, you don’t have to pay a thing. And, even if we win your case, our legal costs will be covered by the compensation you receive.
Why Maurice Blackburn?
We are the leaders in the field of medical negligence law. Over the years, Maurice Blackburn lawyers have achieved some of the largest, most complex and sensitive settlements on cerebral palsy negligence claims for Australian families.
Your case isn’t just another folder on our shelves. We understand the emotional and financial toll that physical and psychological harm, born from medical negligence can have on you and your family.
If you are concerned about your or your child’s medical care, please contact us today to arrange a free discussion about your case. We have offices in Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane, Perth, Adelaide, Darwin and throughout Australia.
All you need to know about medical negligence
If your health care professional, hospital or other facility breaches what’s known as their duty of care, you may be able to make a claim for compensation.
Types of medical negligence
Dimitra DubrowNational Head of Medical Negligence, Melbourne
"I enjoy interacting closely with my clients and helping them to access their full entitlements. It is truly rewarding knowing that we are helping empower people."
Tom BallantynePrincipal Lawyer, Melbourne
"I’m inspired by helping people achieve a measure of justice and financial stability."