Types of Compensation Available for Birth Injury Cases
The joy of welcoming a new life into the world can quickly turn into a heartbreaking ordeal if your newborn sustains a birth injury. As devastating as the emotional impact may be, the financial burden can add another layer of stress. South Carolina families affected by such incidents should be aware of the types of compensation available to alleviate these burdens. This blog aims to shed light on what you might expect in terms of financial relief in birth injury cases.
Immediate Medical Care
The initial treatments, which can include surgeries, medication, and extended hospital stays, form part of the compensation you may claim.
Ongoing Medical Costs
Children with birth injuries may require long-term medical care, including physical therapy, specialized medical equipment, and regular check-ups.
Loss of Earning Capacity
If the birth injury results in a disability that will affect the child’s ability to work in the future, compensation for loss of earning capacity can be factored into the settlement.
Emotional and Psychological Damages
Pain and Suffering
Both the child and the parents may be compensated for the physical pain and emotional suffering stemming from the birth injury.
Parental anxiety, depression, and other emotional tolls linked to the child’s birth injury may be compensable under South Carolina law.
Special Needs Accommodations
Compensation for modifications to the family home, or the cost of a special needs school, may be recoverable depending on the severity of the injury and its lasting impact.
Though rare, punitive damages may be awarded in cases where the healthcare provider’s conduct was particularly reckless or malicious. These are meant to deter such conduct in the future, rather than to compensate the family.
South Carolina-specific Legal Aspects
Statute of Limitations
In South Carolina, the general statute of limitations for medical malpractice cases, including birth injuries, is three years. Exceptions do exist for minors, but it’s crucial to consult an attorney as soon as possible.
Non-Economic Damages Cap
South Carolina caps non-economic damages at $350,000 per defendant, but there are exceptions that might apply in particularly severe cases.
While financial compensation can never fully rectify the emotional and physical pain a birth injury can cause, it can help families manage the practical challenges that lie ahead. If you suspect that your child’s birth injury was due to medical malpractice, it’s crucial to consult a South Carolina attorney specialized in this area to help you understand your options and navigate the complex legal landscape.
Understanding the avenues for compensation can empower you to focus on what’s most important—your child’s well-being—while also seeking the financial support you’ll need to provide the best possible care.