What Is a Birth Injury?
A birth injury is damage that happens to a baby during the process of birth. It can occur during pregnancy, delivery, or shortly after a child is born. Birth injuries may arise from natural complications, but many are caused by medical mistakes, negligence, and miscalculations by health care providers. Birth injuries caused by medical error or negligence are a form of medical malpractice and are subject to Tennessee malpractice laws.
Helping Families Overcome the Devastation of Birth Injuries
Experts estimate that three to five babies in 1,000 are injured during labor and delivery. Our Morristown personal injury attorneys at The Terry Law Firm have spent years helping families overcome the devastation of birth-related injuries. From the moment that you contact us, we will begin building a strong case on your behalf, and work towards the compensation that you need and deserve.
Birth Injury Causes & Complications
One of the most common birth injuries during delivery is shoulder dystocia, which occurs when the baby’s shoulders are too large for the birth canal and become stuck behind the mother’s pubic bone.
Without assistance, the baby can suffer brain damage or even death, but when doctors aren’t trained in proper dystocia protocol, the baby can suffer complications including:
- Cerebral Palsy – a condition in which brain damage affects body movement and muscle coordination. Some cases of cerebral palsy occur despite the best of care, but others are caused by inappropriate or negligent actions during delivery.
- Erb’s palsy – temporary or permanent loss of mobility in the hand, finger or arm. Erb’s palsy typically occurs after difficult deliveries in which forceps or vacuum devices are used to remove the infant from the birth canal. These instruments are often vital to save the life of an infant, but not all physicians are properly trained in their use, and injuries can result.
- Klumpke’s palsy – a condition causing paralysis of the hand and wrist.
- Torticollis – a condition in which the baby’s head and neck tilt to one side.
Birth Injuries & Tennessee Laws
Tennessee law states that medical providers may be held responsible for failing to provide the accepted standard of medical care. If you suspect your child has a birth-related injury, our Morristown personal injury team at The Terry Law Firm knows the right questions to ask and answer in order to determine fault. If a medical mistake has been made, you should not have to bear the burden of the costly and lengthy treatments and health care your child may require.
Taking Action Against the Responsible Parties
As your attorneys, we will help you file a lawsuit or take other legal action against the doctor, hospital or any other responsible party. Having our legal expertise at your side when filing a medical malpractice claim provides you with valuable support – and improves your chances for receiving adequate compensation for your child.
If you are in Hamblen, Greene, or Hawkins Counties, or anywhere in East Tennessee, contact us now at (423) 586-5800 and schedule a free initial consultation.
Tennessee is very unique in that the statute of limitations in Tennessee is much shorter than in other states. The statute of limitations for personal injury cases in Tennessee is generally one (1) year. There are exceptions to the one (1) year statute of limitations.
In Tennessee, one exception to the statute of limitations is the discovery rule. The statute of limitations in Tennessee does not start to run until a person knows or should have known about an injury.
There is currently a provision in the Tennessee Code regarding extending the statute of limitations where persons have criminal charges brought against them and they caused or contributed to an injury. In these cases, it is possible that the statute of limitations may be extended to two (2) years. At this stage, there has been no ruling from the Tennessee Supreme Court on exactly how this statute should be interpreted; therefore, we recommend filing cases within one (1) year.
The statute of limitations in property damage cases in Tennessee is three (3) years and the statute of limitations for a breach of contract in Tennessee is six (6) years. It is important to note that breach of implied warranty of merchantability, which are theories that are often used in product liability cases, carries a six (6) statute of limitations.
At The Terry Law Firm, clients are welcome to come to our Morristown office, our Sevierville office, or our Greeneville office for a free consultation. This is true for virtually any type of case.
In personal injury cases, in particular, The Terry Law Firm works on a contingency fee basis which means that The Terry Law Firm does not receive any compensation, nor are you required to pay anything, unless we are successful on your behalf.
Our general fee in personal injury cases (like most firms) is one-third (1/3). The Terry Law Firm advances all costs and expenses in the case until the matter is resolved. If we are not successful for a client in a personal injury case, then they are not required to pay anything.
The Terry Law Firm regularly handles cases for clients who have been involved in out-of-state accidents. We have handled cases as far west as West Texas and South Dakota. We have had cases in eastern North Carolina, Virginia, and Florida. It is a regular part of The Terry Law Firm’s business to handle cases outside of Tennessee.
Handling a case outside of Tennessee does not cost the client any more than it would if we were handling a case in Tennessee. In fact, the client will likely notice very little difference in a case handled outside of the state versus one handled in the State of Tennessee.