Infant Wrongful Death Lawyer in Ohio
Stillbirth & Child Loss Caused by Preventable Medical Negligence
The death of a child during pregnancy (stillbirth) or shortly after is a traumatic event. Many parents who come to us want to know why their child died. Sadly, the very obstetrical caregivers whose job it is to protect a baby’s safety are sometimes responsible for its death. In many cases, these deaths were preventable and were caused by negligent doctors, nurses, or ineffective hospital policies.
The Ohio infant wrongful death attorneys at The Becker Law Firm represent parents whose child died due to medical malpractice. Our founder, attorney Michael Becker, has more than 30 years of experience helping parents obtain financial compensation for their losses.
Obstetrical caregivers must meet a reasonable standard of care when attending to their patients. If they fail to do so and a baby dies because of it, our lawyers can work to hold them responsible for the damages caused by their negligence.
Reach out to our legal team at (440) 252-4399. We offer free, confidential consultations.
How Medical Malpractice Leads to Wrongful Infant Death
The major risks to babies during pregnancy and around the time of labor and delivery are:
- Oxygen deprivation: Not only can oxygen deprivation cause brain damage, but too much oxygen deprivation can be fatal to a baby in the womb. Obstetricians and nursing staff must be trained to recognize the warning signs that a baby may have too little oxygen. That lack of oxygen can be caused by an umbilical cord wrapped around the neck, overwhelming stresses of labor, or problems with the placenta.
- Reduced blood flow: Like problems with oxygen deprivation, reduced blood flow to a baby in utero can be fatal. Blood is needed to carry oxygen and other vital nutrients to the baby’s developing brain and other organs. When that blood flow is cut off or reduced for too long, the organs will shut down.
- Trauma during delivery: Difficult deliveries must be met calmly by obstetricians. When a delivery is complicated by a baby in distress, whether because of concerning fetal monitor strips or shoulder dystocia, doctors must deliver the baby on an emergency basis. Whether because of inexperience, lack of preparation, or a simple mistake, doctors who encounter these emergencies sometimes act negligently. Too much trauma to a baby using a vacuum extractor or forceps can cause permanent injury or death. Likewise, an improperly performed C-section can be fatal to the baby.
- Antepartum hemorrhage (bleeding during pregnancy)
- Placenta previa: Placenta previa is the implantation of the placenta near or on top of the cervix. Women with this condition often have sudden vaginal bleeding, usually after 28 weeks. It affects half of one percent of all labors. Women with placenta previa should usually be treated with modified bed rest and strict pelvic rest. In some cases, that can prevent damage long enough so that the baby is not premature at delivery. Wrongful death of baby’s because of placenta previa usually occurs because of complications of prematurity.
- Placental abruption: When the placenta prematurely separates from the wall of the uterus, internal bleeding can result. It is responsible for about 15% of all baby deaths near the time of labor.
- Uterine rupture: When the uterine wall is breached, both the mother and child’s lives are at risk. These ruptures can occur at any time near labor but are most common when the mother has prior uterine scars, like prior surgeries or cesarean sections. In the labor and delivery room, medical malpractice including excessive pushing on the stomach (to assist in delivery) or improper use of Oxytocin/Pitocin can cause uterine rupture. It is rare, occurring in about 1% of all deliveries. When detected, the baby must be delivered immediately.
Why Pursue an Infant Wrongful Death Claim?
A wrongful death lawsuit can provide financial compensation for medical bills, grief, and emotional suffering. When the death of a fetus or child is involved, however, the case is more about justice than about money.
When a child dies, there are several categories of damages that a judge or jury can order the negligent doctor or health care provider to pay. These include:
- Cost of medical care to the child between negligence and death
- Funeral costs
- Non-economic damages to beneficiaries (usually the parents): mental anguish, emotional pain and suffering, loss of love, companionship, and support
The majority of damages in cases of child wrongful death are non-economic damages. The amount of money that a judge or jury awards is dependent on many things, particularly the effect of the child’s death on the parents and the location of the lawsuit.
$13.5 Million Birth Injury
Becker Law Firm attorneys Michael Becker and David Skall obtained a jury verdict for $13.5 million in Akron, Ohio. The case involved a now 16- year-old boy who suffered a brain injury at the time of birth (specifically a watershed injury). The doctor held liable for causing the boy’s injury is Laura Fortner, M.D., previously of Atrium OB/GYN, Inc.
- David W. Skall
- Michael F. Becker
$4.5 Million Birth Injury
Failure to Carefully Ligate Umbilical Cord, Resulting In Severing Child’s Great Toe, Major Fluctuation In Child’s Blood Pressure And Subsequent Brain Damage (Cerebral Palsy & Developmental Delays)
- Michael F. Becker
$4.25 Million Birth Injury
Failure of Obsterical Caregivers to Recognize Maternal Hemorrhage Resulting in Brain Damage
- Michael F. Becker
$4 Million Birth Injury
Failure to provide intra-partum and immediate post-partum antibiotics.
$3.14 Million Birth Injury
Failure to perform timely cesarean section which resulted in severe birth asphyxia.
Your unwavering dedication and expert guidance have truly been a lifesaver. Your sharp legal mind and compassionate heart have made all the difference. From the bottom of our hearts, thank you for being there for us every step of the way. We are forever grateful Words cannot express our gratitude for everything you have done for us. Your outstanding professionalism, attention to detail, and commitment to justice have been nothing short of remarkable. You have given us back our confidence and hope during a difficult time. Thank you for being our champions. Thank you so much.- The C. Family
We were greeted with professionalism, expertise, compassion, respect, and a desire to provide the best quality of life for our daughter. She was always the top priority. Mr. Becker represented our daughter and family as if it was his own. His staff was equ- Kris Harmon, mother of Perri
It was an honor having such an experienced lawyer handle my son's cerebral palsy case. He represented us as if he was fighting for his own family member. Everyone at the firm made us feel comfortable about our case. I knew that my son was getting the best representation in Northeast Ohio. The Becker Law Firm is dedicated to bringing justice to their clients. I've already referred families that I know!- Knyesha Washington
Right from the very beginning of our case, David Skall and his assistant Jean Witt were both extremely kind and compassionate to help us put closure on a wrongful death case involving my father at a care facility. They were quick to answer any questions that we had and they made sure we were kept in the loop of this entire process. even though we were in the middle of a pandemic, David and his team were able to adapt their technology and make it all work out for our benefit. I would strongly recommend them to anyone in need of legal help.- John Z.
Contact The Becker Law Firm
Many parents choose to pursue a wrongful death claim as a way to help avert future tragedies. Verdicts and settlements in wrongful death lawsuits can encourage doctors, nurses, midwives, hospitals, and other healthcare providers to be more careful and responsible.
To learn if we can help, please contact one of the Ohio child wrongful death attorneys at The Becker Law Firm; call (440) 252-4399 to arrange a free initial consultation and case evaluation.