Dedicated team of specialist birth injury claims lawyers
Royds Withy King has a specialist team of solicitors working hard to achieve justice and recompense for our clients who have suffered serious brain injuries before or during birth or in the early neonatal phase.
I think my child may have been injured during birth, how can you help?
Childbirth can be a difficult process physically and emotionally. The majority of deliveries are managed without complication, however there are times when things can go wrong; some complications may simply be a natural consequence of a difficult birth but other complications may be preventable or treatable.
Where you have significant concerns about the standard of care received we can help you find out what has happened and advise whether you have grounds to take legal action.
Birth injuries include Erb’s palsy as a result of shoulder dystocia, cerebral palsy as a result of starvation of oxygen during the birth (although there are many other different causes)and infection with Group B Strep bacteria, these are just a few examples and birth injuries can happen in many ways.
If you have questions about how you or your baby were cared for, you may wish to make a complaint to the Hospital Trust, the outcome of your complaint will hopefully provide you with answers concerning what, if anything, has gone wrong. See our guide to making a complaint to assist you.
Whether or not you wish to make a complaint you may wish to ask further questions or seek legal advice. Birth injury claims for catastrophic injuries, such as cerebral palsy, are usually very complicated.
As a specialist firm we have the necessary medical and legal expertise to sensitively and skilfully investigate your or your child’s case. Our team specialises in birth injury claims, and can help you decide whether it is appropriate and advisable to go ahead and make a claim. They will fully investigate your case in an effort to bring it to a successful resolution.
What is the process for making a claim for birth injury?
Obtaining your records
The process of making a claim is involved but essentially it starts by obtaining all relevant medical records. Once these have been obtained and sorted, we will then record your recollection of events in a witness statement.
Instructing medico-legal experts
We will ask a number of independent medical experts to look at the medical records and tell us whether the treatment received fell below a reasonable standard and caused an injury.
Issuing a claim
If the standard of care received did fall below an acceptable level we will write to the hospital setting out the allegations of negligence against them. They will then have the opportunity to admit or deny the allegations we have made. If they deny the allegations we will assess whether to proceed to issue court proceedings. We call this ‘issuing a claim’.
The court process
Once your claim is ‘issued’ the court process can be lengthy. First, we will let the court know that we intend to bring a claim. The court will then manage your claim by telling us how many witnesses we are allowed, how many experts we are allowed to use, and what evidence we should present.
The court will set a timetable for us to work to. Usually there will be some time set aside for the parties to have a meeting to try to reach agreement upon the issues and the level of compensation which should be paid. More often than not financial settlement will be reached before need for a trial arises. It is very unusual to proceed to trial.
How will making a claim benefit my child?
If the claim is successful, you or your child will be able entailed to receive compensation. Compensation will allow you to commission and pay for treatment and care, if required.
Our expert team are independently accredited and achieve millions of pounds in compensation for our clients annually. We understand the needs of our clients with significant disabilities and we will provide you with an individually tailored service to achieve the results you and your family want. We achieve this in two ways:
- We build a team around you and your child, bearing in mind the birth injury you or your child have experienced. This ensures you have the best expertise available for your case.
- We will work hard to take as much stress as possible away from you.
And, if your claim is successful, you don’t need to worry about money. Our ‘team around the client’ means any compensation is carefully managed to pay for your child’s care for the rest of their life. You can read more about how compensation works here.
What kind of compensation might I receive?
Please see our birth injury compensation page to find out more about how compensation is calculated and what you might receive.
How long will it take to conclude my claim for birth injury?
It may be possible to conclude the liability part of the claim within 1-3 years of investigation. This means the part of the claim which alleges what has gone wrong and when. The second part of the claim concerns ascertaining what injuries have been caused and calculating the level of compensation to be awarded.
The length of time it takes to conclude a case will also depend upon the Hospital Trust you are claiming against, and whether they are willing to admit that something has gone wrong. Cases can be concluded quickly if an admission is forthcoming, however when all allegations are denied it can take longer.
What are the funding options?
We are one of the few firms who still offer legal aid funding. To be eligible you or your child must have suffered a neurological injury at birth or within the first six weeks of life. Other forms of funding are available, for example, no win no fee agreements.
We will seek to take the stress away in arranging funding for the case and will undertake all work in setting up the funding of the claim, free of charge.