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How to Prove a Doctor’s Negligence Resulted in a Birth Injury

Posted on February 16, 2022
If your child gets diagnosed with a birth injury, your family may be at a loss as to how to demand justice against the individual or institution that caused the injury, such as a hospital in Dallas. Before you can be awarded financial compensation by the courts for your child’s trauma, you or your lawyer must prove that a doctor’s negligence caused or significantly contributed to the injury. Proving a birth injury claim may take assistance from a personal injury lawyer.

What Is Negligence?

Negligence in a birth injury case is the failure of a medical practitioner to use a proper, legal or ethical amount of care. Several examples of negligence could result in an injury to an infant during labor and delivery, including:
  • Failing to diagnose or misdiagnosing infections or maternal conditions during pregnancy
  • Prescribing a dangerous medication to an expecting mother
  • Failing to monitor the infant for signs of fetal distress
  • Failing to properly handle birth complications or emergencies
  • Making surgical errors during a C-section
  • Using inappropriate or dangerous birthing techniques
  • Misusing birthing tools, such as vacuums or forceps
Any act of negligence during the birthing process, no matter how small, could result in a significant birth injury to a vulnerable infant.

What Are the Four Elements of Negligence?

A negligence claim of any sort has four main parts, often referred to as the four elements of negligence. To win a birth injury lawsuit that is based on the doctrine of negligence, you or your lawyer must provide evidence that establishes these elements. They are:
  1. Duty of care. A doctor-patient relationship must have existed between you and the defendant at the time of the birth injury.
  2. A violation of the duty of care. The defendant must be guilty of a breach of the duty of care. This can refer to an act or omission that is careless, reckless, willful, wrongful or malicious.
  3. Causation. The defendant’s mistake or act of medical malpractice must be the proximate, or main, cause of the birth injury in question.
  4. Damages. The plaintiff must have suffered compensable losses because of the birth injury. These losses can be economic and/or noneconomic.
Establishing evidence of negligence is not always easy. You or your lawyer must provide proof that the defendant had an obligation to act in accordance with the rules and standards of the medical industry, did something that a normal and prudent practitioner would not have in similar circumstances, and that this is what caused your child’s birth injury.

Evidence of Negligence in a Birth Injury Case

The burden of proof in a birth injury case – and any personal injury lawsuit – is a preponderance of the evidence. This means clear evidence that is enough to convince a court that the defendant is more likely to be at fault for the birth injury than not at fault. It may be necessary to hire an attorney to help you preserve, collect and present compelling evidence to support your birth injury claim in Dallas. Evidence of negligence can include:
  • The injured infant’s medical records
  • An official injury diagnosis and prognosis
  • Photographs or videos of the infant’s injury or condition
  • Eyewitness statements and accounts of the delivery
  • Testimony from an expert medical witness
Expert testimony is often one of the strongest forms of evidence during a birth injury lawsuit in Texas. Birth injury cases involve complicated medical standards of care and the mechanics of an infant injury – topics that can be difficult for a jury to grasp without insights from a relevant medical expert. An attorney will have connections to qualified experts who can provide testimony and help you prove negligence during a birth injury lawsuit. For more information about how to build a birth injury case in Texas, contact The Law Firm of Aaron A. Herbert, P.C. to request a free consultation.