Do You Have A Potential Birth Defect Claim?
Retaining the services of a birth defect lawyer can seem like a major step to take. You have the right to seek a consultation with a birth defect attorney before you move ahead with any action, though, and it might be wise to think about whether you have the basis for a claim. Here are three common reasons someone might hire a birth injury attorney and seek compensation.
Manufacturers of products have strong legal obligations to make sure anything they put on the market is safe. This is especially the case for things that people ingest, such as drugs. Consequently, that means the manufacturers are subject to strict liability. Such liability means that every case is a binary question of whether the drug did or didn't cause the injury, without any discussion of the degree of alleged responsibility.
A drug-related defect might arise from the mother using it during pregnancy or delivery. There is also a less likely scenario where a drug is administered to a baby just after birth.
Issues during pregnancy or delivery may also be treated using medical devices. For example, low oxygen levels in babies during delivery is a common problem. Machines are frequently used to treat these cases, and malfunctions have the potential to make a bad situation worse. A birth injury lawyer might look for similar cases involving the same equipment to build a case against a manufacturer. As with drug-related claims, these cases are subject to strict liability.
The failures of a doctor, a nurse, or an organization may cross the line into medical malpractice. Notably, these sorts of issues oftentimes overlap with what might seemingly be a product liability case. For example, your doctor may have prescribed a drug while you were pregnant. A birth injury lawyer will have to separate the literature about the drug from the evidence that the doctor may have improperly prescribed it.
Certain practices in handling pregnancy issues and deliveries may also be deemed malpractice. A midwife, for example, might have used a delivery technique that's no longer widely used. Proving it was unreasonable to do things this way may require your birth defect attorney to interview experts and assemble reports that show a responsible practitioner would not have allowed the technique to be used during delivery.
Note that who to pursue a claim against is sometimes an issue. There may be questions about whether, for example, to sue the doctor or the hospital.