All too often, parents are faced with the distressing reality that their baby was injured at birth. While some birth injuries are unavoidable because of the challenges presented during delivery, others are due to negligence. If your child was injured through medical malpractice, both you and that child deserve compensation. Hospitals, doctors and other medical personnel need to be held accountable when their mistakes or negligence cause harm. If you want to file a birth injury claim in Maryland, you need to act promptly. Working with an experienced attorney will ensure you file your lawsuit within the specified time.
Types of Damages You Can Get for a Birth Injury Claim in Maryland
Several factors determine the types of damages you can claim if your baby suffers birth injuries. Keep in mind that you can only claim losses you can prove you suffered. Generally, you can get compensation for all medical expenses relating to the injury. You may also be able to recover the money spent on medical equipment and traveling to and from the doctor. If the child has to receive ongoing medical care, you may also get compensation for future expenses.
Parents can also claim damages for the loss of income they suffered while caring for the child. Furthermore, there may be additional compensation if the child is expected to be unable to work and earn an income. They may be able to get compensation for future loss of earning capacity.
Not all recoverable damages in a Maryland birth injury claim are financial losses. Your family may also be entitled to non-economic damages like pain and suffering. The child may be eligible for compensation for physical pain, permanent impairments, and emotional suffering. Meanwhile, parents can recover damages for extreme emotional distress and mental anguish caused by the child’s suffering. A Maryland birth injury attorney will help you to quantify your losses and get the compensation you deserve. They will ensure you file your legal claim before the statute of limitations runs out.
Why You Have to File A Medical Malpractice Suit Within A Specific Timeframe
Every state has statutes of limitations in place for different types of legal cases. They limit the amount of time you have to file a claim against a perpetrator. There are several reasons for this. The main one is to ensure that both parties involved in the case are treated fairly. If you act within the specified time, you may be able to collect damages.
However, if you could file a lawsuit 20 years after an injury occurred, the defendant would be at a disadvantage. They may not be able to find enough evidence to defend themselves. You may also not have the supporting evidence you would need for your case. As time passes, memories fade, evidence disappears, and witnesses move away or die.
The statute of limitations also helps to ensure that the offending party doesn’t hurt anyone else. If a doctor was negligent, your lawsuit doesn’t only help you to recover damages for your baby’s injury. It also protects other patients. Doctors who are accused of malpractice tend to be more careful in the future. Depending on the circumstances, they may also lose their job or their license to practice.
The Statute of Limitations for Birth Injury Claims in Maryland
Birth injury claims fall under the category of medical malpractice. In Maryland, you have to file a medical malpractice lawsuit within:
- Five years of the date of injury; or
- Three years after you discovered the injuries
The shortest time frame applies. The lawsuit must be brought before the child’s 21st birthday in any case. If the baby died because of the injuries, you must file the lawsuit within three years of the death. If the injury was not realized until later, you have three years from the date of discovery to file. However, this can’t be more than five years from the actual injury.
Contact the Attorneys at Pinder Plotkin LLC for A Free Consultation
If your child was the victim of a preventable birth injury, you may have a claim against a doctor or hospital. To find out your options, call our Maryland law office that handles birth injuries, Pinder Plotkin LLC. We will review your case and determine whether you have a valid claim for medical malpractice. If you do, we’ll do everything we can to help you get the compensation you deserve. Call us today to schedule a free consultation and learn what we can do for you.