Labor and Delivery Complications Attorney in Honolulu, Hawaii
When the time comes to give birth, many expecting mothers put their faith in their doctors to provide them with professional, high-quality care. However, not all deliveries go according to plan. It’s not uncommon for doctors and other medical professionals to make errors; when they do, the consequences can be extremely severe.
If your child was harmed while you were giving birth and experienced complications during labor and delivery, there is a good chance that it resulted from medical negligence or malpractice. An experienced Hawaii labor and delivery complications attorney can help you answer your questions and determine if you stand a claim. Speak to us now and schedule a free consultation!
Why do I need a lawyer for delivery complications in Hawaii?
Problems during labor and delivery can result in a wide range of health complications for your newborn. These difficulties may only be temporary in some instances. However, in some situations, the medical complications can be extremely severe and last for a considerable time. At SRB Hawaii Law, we are steadfast in our belief that medical professionals should be held liable for any medical negligence or malpractice that may occur before, during, and after childbirth.
Medical malpractice law can be pretty challenging to understand. Hundreds of people in the Honolulu area and throughout the state of Hawaii have pursued medical malpractice claims with the assistance of our skilled labor and delivery complications attorney. We can also assist you! Our law firm can tirelessly pursue financial compensation on your behalf so that you can get your life back on track after the unfortunate event.
What are complications during delivery & labor?
Childbirth is also known as “labor and delivery.” It is the process that occurs after pregnancy has run its course naturally. Giving birth is normal and natural, and most deliveries occur without complications or issues.
On the other hand, one should be prepared for possible complications during labor and delivery. These complications can range from relatively minor and even routine issues to occurrences that cause catastrophic injury.
Complications during labor and delivery can sometimes lead to health problems or even a disability in the future. In extreme cases, these complications can be fatal for the mother or the infant.
What are the common complications during labor & delivery?
When a pregnant woman is not adequately cared for, or if healthcare professionals make errors, the mother and baby may face serious complications. Some common problems that can happen during labor and delivery are:
- Perinatal asphyxia – failing to initiate and sustain breathing at birth
- Non-reassuring fetal status (fetal distress)
- Placenta previa – placenta covering cervix
- Preterm labor
- Prolonged labor and failure to progress
- Excessive bleeding and blood loss
- Breech birth or malposition – fetal position
- Cephalopelvic disproportion complication
- Uterine rupture risk
- Rapid labor – precipitous labor
- Shoulder dystocia
- Forceps and vacuum extractors complications
- Umbilical cord problems
- Improper prescription or administration of medication
- Delayed emergency c-section
- Improper fetal monitoring
One of the most challenging things a parent can go through is watching their child suffer from a birth injury. Suppose you believe your child’s injury was caused by medical malpractice. In that case, you should immediately contact a labor and delivery complications attorney with extensive experience handling medical malpractice and birth injury cases.
what are the Common Injuries Caused by Labor and Delivery Medical Negligence?
Medical negligence during labor and delivery can result in many birth injuries and injuries to the mother, which have repercussions that last a person’s entire life. The following are some of the more frequent types of injuries:
- Cerebral palsy
- Oxygen deprivation
- Hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy
- Brachial plexus injury
- Brain damage
- Skull fractures
- Seizure disorders
- Maternal hemorrhage
- Dangerous drops and spikes in blood pressure
Who may be liable for your labor or delivery complications?
The birthing process can be hazardous when doctors or nurses are inexperienced or underqualified or when the healthcare facility is ill-equipped to handle potential complications. If the mother has a complication and the doctor fails to diagnose or treat her promptly, the doctor may be liable for the resulting harm.
Similarly, if a nurse fails to monitor the patient or handles the baby incorrectly, they may be liable for the resulting birth injuries. In many cases, the hospital can be held responsible for the medical negligence of their employees or for failing to uphold safe, legal, medical procedures.
If you suspect you or your child suffered a labor or delivery injury in Hawaii, our firm wants to help. Our birth injury lawyer can assist in determining if your medical provider is liable.
WHAT IS Labor and Delivery Malpractice and Negligence?
Labor and delivery errors and negligence are forms of medical malpractice. In the same way that not all mistakes or errors constitute malpractice, not all adverse or undesirable outcomes result from negligence. However, if the medical professional acted carelessly during labor and delivery, causing you harm that resulted in damages, you can file a claim in court.
Medical negligence can manifest in different ways in the labor and delivery room. The following are some common examples of improper labor and delivery practices:
- Inadequate monitoring of the mother and baby
- Failure to observe the mother or infant for signs of distress
- Not reading the mother’s chart or medical history
- Failure to carry out a medically required cesarean section (C-section)
- Improper use of vacuum or forceps during delivery
- Failure to refer a patient or fetal condition to a specialist
- Birth complications misdiagnosed
- Inability to detect post-delivery infections
- Medication administration failure
- Excessive medication administration
- Choosing an untested or unproven delivery method
- Failure to properly sterilize the room or its contents
- Too much or too little anesthesia administration
- Employing excessive force when guiding the infant from the birth canal
- The excessive or unsupervised use of labor-inducing drugs, such as Pitocin
- Delivering while intoxicated or under the influence of controlled substances
Our qualified delivery complications attorney in Hawaii can help you investigate your case, assess your claims and hold the negligent parties accountable for the injuries you and your child sustained, whether it was the doctor, nurse, or hospital.
Proving Claims of Medical Negligence in hawaii
The legal concept of medical negligence is used to hold defendants liable for damages. A doctor or other medical professional may be found negligent if they fail to act under current standards of care or in the same way another reasonable medical professional would act in the same situation.
To establish medical negligence, the plaintiff must typically show the following:
- The attending physician or other medical professionals owed a duty to the patient.
- The defendant breached that duty.
- The patient suffered harm as a result of the breach.
- The injury resulted in damages such as increased medical bills and pain and suffering for the birth injury victim.
what are the Requirements for Filing a Labor and Delivery Malpractice Claim in hawaii?
Many states have passed legislation requiring plaintiffs in medical malpractice cases to provide proof of the defendant’s negligence at the beginning of the case. They can submit their claim as a “certificate of merit” or submit it to a pre-trial review board. In Hawaii, they require submission to the pre-trial review board.
The basic requirements for submitting a medical malpractice case to Hawaii’s “medical inquiry and conciliation panel” and obtaining the “certificate of consultation” are as follows. This process can be tricky. Engaging a skilled Honolulu, Hawaii, labor and delivery complications attorney is recommended to ensure you adhere to all the requirements.
Before you can file a medical malpractice lawsuit in court in Hawaii, you must send an “inquiry” and pay a certain fee to the state’s medical inquiry and conciliation panel. In some cases, the fee can be waived or lowered.
The panel process aims to try to settle these cases outside of court through settlement, mediation, or some other method and to stop people from filing birth injury lawsuits that don’t have a good reason to be filed.
The probe must:
- Be put down on paper;
- Include a description of the facts on which the birth injury lawsuit will be based, and;
- List the names of all healthcare providers or facilities that will be part of the claim.
After the inquiry is sent, the panel will let all of the mentioned healthcare providers know and give them 20 days to respond. At that point, the panel will set up a hearing to look at all the evidence, including testimony from medical experts and medical records. The patient can go to court if the panel can’t solve the case.
Certificate of Consultation
Hawaii law also says that the above-mentioned medical inquiry must come with a “certificate of consultation” that says:
- The injured patient (or their birth injury lawyer) has talked to at least one licensed physician who is knowledgeable or experienced in the same medical specialty as the medical professional named in the inquiry.
- As a result, the injured patient (or their medical malpractice attorney) has decided that there is a “reasonable and meritorious cause” for filing the inquiry.
The law can make an exception to this rule, but only in two cases: when the applicable statute of limitations is about to run out or when a “good faith attempt” to meet with a doctor fails.
Damages Claim for Labor and Delivery Medical Negligence Lawsuit
You can pursue two types of damage claims: economic and non-economic. Economic damages refer to monetary losses, while non-economic damages refer to less tangible harms. In Hawaii, you can make claims in both categories:
- Medical and hospital bills
- Future expenses
- Rehabilitation costs
- Ongoing care and assisted living costs
- Loss of income and earning capacity
- Costs associated with needed home modifications
- Adaptive equipment for a child
- Reduced potential for financial gain
- Diminished life expectancy
- Pain and suffering
- Wrongful death
In highly unusual circumstances, you may be eligible for punitive damages. However, the state of Hawaii makes it extremely difficult to file a claim for these types of compensation.
It is worth noting that pain and suffering damages are capped in Hawaii, while no cap is implemented on other economic damages. To know your estimated maximum compensation claim, you can consult with a knowledgeable delivery complications attorney in Hawaii about your birth injury case.
STATUTE OF LIMITATION FOR Labor and Delivery Lawsuit
The statute of limitations (SOL) says how long a person has to file a lawsuit after a birth injury for it to be valid. Hawaii’s statute of limitations is complex because it depends on who files the case on behalf of the child. A parent, legal guardian, or child represented by a birth injury attorney can file a legal lawsuit.
- SOL for a lawsuit filed by the child (under 10) – six years from the injury or the wrongful act or when they reach ten years of age, whichever is later
- SOL if the child is over 10 – six years from the injury or the wrongful act
- SOL for labor and delivery malpractice lawsuit filed by the parent or guardian – 2 years and up to a maximum of 6 years for discovery
- SOL for wrongful death claims – 2 years
You, your child, and your entire family deserve justice. A competent Hawaii birth injury attorney can ensure you receive the justice and fair compensation you deserve.
Call our Attorney for Labor & Delivery Complications in Honolulu, Hawaii!
Improper medical care during labor and delivery can have long-lasting consequences for the mother and her child. The compassionate birth injury lawyer at SRB Hawaii Law fully understands that complications during labor and delivery can cause great physical and emotional distress. We can assist you in bringing legal action against the party responsible for your injuries.
SRB Hawaii Law is a caring birth injury & complications law firm in Honolulu, HI that can assist you in filing a claim for compensation if you or your child were injured during the delivery process. We are here to lead you in your pursuit of justice. Give us a call right now, and let’s discuss your concerns.