Category Archives: Birth Injuries

Can Social Media Impact My Case?

Tuesday, April 7, 2020

Today’s personal injury cases have several unique considerations that yesterday’s did not. With the advent of social media, it’s easy to share sensitive details of our personal lives in what we believe is a private forum.

However, your social media posts may be accessible to the defendant, members of the defendant’s legal team, and other individuals involved in your claim. What you post online can have a significant impact on your personal injury case — and likely not a positive one.

Social Media and Personal Injury Cases

Although your intentions may not be harmful, social media posts can be very detrimental to a personal injury case. If you are pursuing a personal injury claim, you suffered an injury that you claim that someone else caused, and are seeking compensatory damages to help you recover. These damages can include payment for medical bills, long-term care and disability accommodations, and lost wages during recovery time.

If something you post online raises suspicion about the nature of your injuries, the extent of your treatment plan or medical expenses, or your recovery timeline, you could lose your chance at receiving your settlement. The type of content that could lead to loss of credibility is not always obvious.

For example, say that you suffered a broken leg in a car accident. The at-fault driver caused this car accident by speeding through a red light and striking the side of your car. While you can easily prove that the at-fault driver was responsible for the accident by examining surveillance footage and police reports, proving your need for compensation is a bit more difficult.

You file your claim and ask for $50,000 to cover your damages, which includes ongoing medical treatment for at least four months. During your case, you attend a party while using your crutches. A friend takes a picture with you at the party, and your crutches are outside of the shot.

If you post this picture onto social media, it will raise suspicion about your need for medical treatment and the credibility of your injuries. The insurance company or the defense attorney could use this photo as justification that your treatment costs do not need to be as high as you claim — potentially leading to a reduction in your overall settlement and a loss of the funds you need to recover.

Social Media Tips for Personal Injury Victims

Although you must be careful about what you say online, it can be difficult to quit social media cold turkey and you may still want to be active on your accounts. However, it is important to be smart, be cautious, and think before you post.

  • Set all of your social media accounts to private and limit your posts as much as possible during the extent of your case. Something as simple as sharing a funny picture could be evidence against you. Keep your profiles locked and only post when necessary.
  • Do not accept any friend or follower requests from people you do not know in real life. Although many states consider this practice unethical, some attorneys or even insurance representatives may attempt to follow or friend you. It is best not to accept any new requests during your case.
  • When you do make a post on social media, do not post anything about your case. Remember, anything you post online could be evidence against you. If you make a contradicting statement, you can lose your chance at collecting the compensation you need.
  • In addition to the above tip, do not post about your injuries, doctor’s visits, treatment progress, travel, or anything related to the harm you suffered. These statements could become evidence against you.

Personal injury cases can be complex, especially in today’s digital age. You must take extra caution when sharing details of your case online, or even with family and friends. If you say or share something that could harm your credibility, you can lose your chance at collecting the settlement you need to recover.

For best results and to avoid accidental harm, contact a personal injury attorney as soon as possible. Your Bakersfield personal injury attorney can advise you on the best practices of posting on social media, helping you preserve your credibility and increase your chances of a successful outcome.

Posted by highrank at 5:15 pm

What Is the Difference Between a Birth Defect and a Birth Injury?

Monday, November 18, 2019

When we welcome a new baby into our family, we trust that the medical professionals involved in the labor and delivery process deliver the child safely and in a way that meets industry standards. However, not all doctors, obstetricians, or nurses can uphold this standard – leading to severe, lifelong damage to our children before, during, and after delivery. Newborns are at risk for a number of health problems before they are born, including birth defects and birth injuries – and sometimes, a medical professional’s negligence or another party’s recklessness can be the cause.

What Is a Birth Defect?

Birth defects occur before labor and delivery, usually while the newborn develops in the mother’s womb. They are catastrophic injuries and can be internal, affecting organs such as the heart and kidneys, or external, leading to disfigurement and disability. Some defects impact the baby’s central nervous system, leading to serious issues that can impact a child’s development and ability to care for him or herself as he or she grows up.

Common birth defects include the following.

  • Cleft palate
  • Heart murmurs
  • Down syndrome
  • Spina bifida
  • Atrioventricular septal defect
  • Clubfoot
  • Microcephaly

Many causes can contribute to the development of birth defects, many of which can involve a third party’s negligence or recklessness. Most commonly, birth defects are the result of genetic mutations in the child’s DNA, but this situation is far from the only cause. In some circumstances, exposure to toxic materials or dangerous medication prescriptions can harm a fetus’s development, leading to a birth defect.

What Is a Birth Injury?

On the other hand, birth injuries occur either during or soon after labor and delivery, and often involve the negligence of a third-party. They occur when the newborn sustains an injury during the birthing process, often resulting in complications that can impact the child’s life and development. Often, a birth injury is the result of negligent birthing practices or unavoidable complications during labor.

Common birth injuries include the following.

  • Cerebral palsy
  • Erb’s palsy
  • Infection
  • Broken bones and fractures
  • Cephalohematoma
  • Nerve damage
  • Intracranial hemorrhage

Common causes of birth injuries include the use of dangerous birthing tools like forceps, failure to provide proper aftercare to the newborn, the baby being born in the breech position, and improper monitoring of the child or mother during labor and delivery, especially in terms of oxygen level monitoring.

Proving a Birth Defect or Birth Injury Lawsuit

If you want to file a birth injury or birth defect lawsuit for your child’s injuries, you will need to determine who is at-fault for the injury in question. The at-fault party or parties can be a medical professional involved in labor or delivery, including a doctor, obstetrician, or nurse. In birth defect cases, you could hold a corporation liable for improper toxic material disposal or a doctor who prescribed you dangerous medication.

To successfully prove your lawsuit and receive damages, you and your attorney will need to prove the following for elements.

  • First, you need to prove that the at-fault party owed you or your child a duty of care. For example, medical professionals have a duty to uphold the industry standard of care when treating patients, and corporations have a duty to keep the public safe by disposing of dangerous chemicals responsibly.
  • Next, you need to prove that the at-fault party breached his, her, or its duty of care to you or your child. For example, a doctor failing to monitor oxygen levels during delivery or a company disposing of toxic chemicals underneath your home would be breaching their respective duties of care.
  • Third, you will need to prove that the birth injury or birth defect resulted from the breach of care. You may need to consult with a medical expert or another scientist to prove this element, depending on the facts of your case.
  • Finally, you will need to prove that your child suffered damages that you can collect in the lawsuit. These damages can include past and future medical expenses, disability accommodations, the cost of live-in caregivers, medications, surgeries, and more.

If your child is grappling with the aftermath of a birth injury or a birth defect, you have legal options available to you. If you have not done so already, contact a California birth injury or Bakersfield personal injury lawyer to assist you with your case. Your lawyer can help you determine which damages you qualify for, collect the necessary evidence you need to prove your lawsuit, and build a compelling case in your favor.

Posted by highrank at 6:33 pm

Birth Injury Support Groups in California

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Birth injuries can be life changing for both child and parent. The trauma of a birth injury and the recovery journey can be difficult to endure alone. Luckily, parents don’t have to figure out life with a birth injured child without help. Birth injury support groups exist for the families of minor patients. These groups can help the parents of children who suffer from birth injuries such as Erb’s Palsy, brachial plexus injuries, brain injuries, autism, cerebral palsy, and other disorders. They can also help mothers who are coping with anxiety from a traumatic birth or post-partum depression. Here is an introduction to some birth injury support groups that are available in California.

This UK-based online support group includes a variety of traumatic birth experiences, with heartfelt stories families share. This group regularly posts helpful information and resources for coping with a traumatic birth and injuries, such as books, articles, and blog posts. Find information about how to prepare for birth, how to heal after a traumatic birth, and how to birth again after a harrowing first birth.

United Brachial Plexus Network, Inc.

This national organization has a wealth of information and support options for parents with children who have suffered brachial plexus injuries. These are injuries to the brachial plexus, or the network of nerves in the arm and shoulder. Brachial plexus injuries commonly occur when the baby becomes stuck in the birth canal, lodged behind the mother’s pelvic bone. Improper use of birthing tools and techniques can cause this type of injury, especially when the physician reacts poorly to an emergency situation.

The United Brachial Plexus Network (UBPN) offers resources for parents as well as for people living with brachial plexus injuries. It offers scholarships for individuals with this type of injury, as well as an annual camp for children, adults, and parents. Find everything you need from a brachial plexus injury support group with the UBPN, from learning tips on how to prevent this kind of injury, support for families, education about this disability, and a worldwide network of people dealing with this injury.

Brain Injury Association of California

This support group is helpful for all parents of children with brain injuries, and not just brain injuries relating to traumatic birth. The Brain Injury Association of California is a nonprofit organization that provides information and support for families and individuals affected by brain injures. This group publishes recent news relating to brain injuries, as well as information about local events and fundraisers. It helps people get involved with the cause, such as attending educational events or participating in forums. It is also a great source of support for those living with brain injuries. The group provides personal stories, FAQs, recent research, and staff available for conversation.

United Cerebral Palsy

United Cerebral Palsy (UCP) has an extensive network around the country. It provides services and support based within individual communities, serving the unique needs of people with cerebral palsy (CP). Parents and individuals can find information, resources, and support for life with cerebral palsy. UCP aims to help those with CP live life to the fullest, providing a way to stay connected and join the conversation. The UCP also accepts donations for helping those living with CP.

Attention Deficit Disorder Association

Attention deficit disorder (ADD) and other behavioral disorders, can stem from a traumatic birth injury, especially those involving the brain. Lack of oxygen to the brain (brain hypoxia) during birth can lead to permanent brain damage and behavioral changes in children. The Attention Deficit Disorder Association (ADDA) gives you excellent resources you can trust and a network of individuals going through the same experiences with whom you can connect. As an individual with ADD or a parent of a child with ADD, this organization can help you learn how to live with this disorder and join a community of others who can support you and your family.

Posted by highrank at 10:55 pm