Legal Resources for HIE
If your child was recently diagnosed with Hypoxic-Ischemic Encephalopathy (HIE), then in addition to looking for community resources, you are also likely interested in learning more about your legal options.
HIE is an expensive condition, and many parents are unaware of their rights and the legal resources available to them following a birth injury caused by medical negligence or malpractice. For instance, while a handful of cases will be drawn out and eventually have to go to trial, a majority of birth injury cases are settled before that becomes necessary—meaning families get access to their financial lifeline much sooner.
New parents also tend to be misinformed or underestimate the long-term economic impact of their child’s HIE diagnosis, which can cause them to settle for less than they deserve or fail to pursue compensation at all.
Many of the causes of HIE are entirely preventable with careful monitoring and quick treatment. It’s a sad reality that medical mistakes and doctor negligence are common causes of HIE.
Birth Injury Attorney Laura Brown
Continue reading to learn about the various types of support available to families and children affected by HIE and other birth injuries—starting with legal resources.
Meet with an HIE birth injury lawyer near you
If your child suffered HIE or another birth injury and you suspect it was caused by the negligence of a doctor, caregiver or hospital, then it’s time to explore your legal options and resources.
Just like every child is unique and special, every birth injury case is different and has important details and nuances that might impact your claim. Rather than looking for general answers about your case, we strongly advise that you meet with a knowledgeable and qualified attorney who specializes in birth injury cases to learn about your legal rights.
What does a birth injury attorney do?
A birth injury lawyer is an attorney who focuses primarily on injuries that occur at or near the time of birth. This practice area is part of the broader category of personal injury law.
You may associate personal injury attorneys with ads on TV talking about car accidents, slip-and-falls, and medical malpractice. However, birth injury attorneys differ from more general medical malpractice and personal injury attorneys in several important ways.
For starters, an experienced birth injury attorney will have accumulated knowledge and exposure to the complicated medicine surrounding birth injuries. When it comes to injuries that occur at or near birth, the medicine is often complex. Even if you aren’t sure whether or not a birth injury was the result of negligence, it’s vital you speak with an attorney anyway.
In the beginning, the job of a birth injury attorney is to investigate whether a child’s HIE was due to a preventable medical error and whether you may be owed compensation. This information can be compiled from government sources, medical sources, and by consulting with experts on HIE.
Medical professionals, including nurses and doctors, are required to uphold a certain standard of care. They are required by law to abide by this standard of care. When medical professionals do not follow the standard of care, they can put the mother and child at risk of injury.
A birth injury attorney can help investigate the facts surrounding a birth injury to find out whether the medical professionals upheld the standard of care. If you have questions about whether a birth injury was preventable, a birth injury attorney can help find out if the injury could have been avoided.
Due to the sensitive nature of birth injuries and the complexity of the law and medicine, many birth injury lawyers feel that representing victims of birth injury is truly their calling. They often have a deep desire to serve the families and children who have been affected by birth injuries. As counselors, guides and lawyers, the best birth injury attorneys will have a passion for advocating for what is best for you and your child.
What happens when you contact a birth injury attorney?
Upon initial contact with a birth injury attorney, you will likely speak to a secretary or paralegal. This staff member will collect basic information such as your name, your child’s name, when the injury occurred, where it happened, facts about the injury, and the present condition of the child.
The staff member will create a summary for the birth injury attorney so that the attorney can prepare for a follow-up interview.
After preparing their questions, a birth injury attorney will call you to do an initial interview. During this interview, the attorney will introduce themselves, get to know you, and ask you questions to fill in the details about the facts surrounding the birth injury.
At this point, the birth injury attorney may already know whether further legal action is appropriate, and they may advise you on that question at the end of the interview. Often, more information is required.
If a birth injury attorney believes that the injury may have been caused by a preventable medical error (or still has questions), the next step is to investigate. During the investigation process, the attorney may ask the hospital or medical professionals for records related to birth and injury.
The attorney may also seek advice from medical experts, asking medical professionals to review the records and verify whether they see an injury that was caused by a preventable medical error.
If at the end of the investigation the attorney believes that the birth injury was due to a preventable medical error, the next step is typically to file a lawsuit.
During the lawsuit, both sides will have opportunities to ask each other questions, perform discovery, and interview key witnesses. It is common that many lawsuits settle at some point during this process before trial.
If the case is disputed between the parties, then the case may end up going to trial, where the attorneys will put the facts before a judge or a jury. Once the judge or jury has made a determination, then a verdict is entered.
If your attorney succeeds, then the verdict will include a sum of money that will be paid to compensate you and/or your child for the birth injury.
After your case is over, your attorney may follow-up with you from time to time to check in on how your family is doing. A good attorney will have an open-door policy, encouraging you to contact them at any time down the road if a new problem develops.
Meet Laura Brown
A nationally respected HIE birth injury attorney
Laura Brown has dedicated her entire career to birth injury representation, including cases involving HIE. As a passionate advocate for children and families, not to mention a nationally recognized attorney for birth injury cases, Laura helps even the playing field for her clients by exclusively representing babies and their families.
If she believes your baby’s injury was avoidable and should have been prevented, Laura isn’t afraid to go up against even the largest hospital corporations or insurance companies. Years of devoted practice have instilled her with confidence, experience and the skills to match.
Get answers from an experienced birth injury attorney
Getting help for a child with HIE or another birth injury can make a big difference. Early intervention is often key to helping improve a child’s wellbeing, which is why it’s important to act swiftly.
At the Brown Trial Firm, our HIE birth injury attorneys can help you investigate your case, find answers to your questions, and determine if you are entitled to compensation. We offer case reviews at no cost or obligation. Many birth injuries that result in HIE could have been prevented. Don’t wait, get help today.
Other HIE resources
In addition to legal advice, you may require help managing other aspects of your baby’s HIE—including the financial, emotional and practical concerns. We invite you to explore the resources listed below for further assistance.
- Hope for HIE: A non-profit organization seeking to empower communities to find hope in the HIE journey.
- The Beautiful Faces of HIE: A private Facebook support group exclusively for parents and legal guardians of children with a moderate to severe outcome from HIE.
- Coping with HIE/CP: A public Facebook support group for individuals who are dealing with everyday life with HIE, whether they are the patient or the caregiver.
- March of Dimes: A national organization seeking to improve health and wellness for new mothers and babies, as well as help people connect with local support systems.
Research & studies
Browse the latest studies and scientific research published about HIE: