If you would like to make a claim for injuries negligently sustained during childbirth, you will want to know what the process involves.
Medical negligence claims process
Generally, the medical negligence claims process will involve the following 10 steps:-
- Obtaining and reviewing your medical records
- Taking witness statements from you and, if necessary, your partner
- Asking a barrister for preliminary advice regarding your case. Advice will be sought during various stages of the claims process – for example, when calculating a suitable sum of compensation
- Asking a medical expert to write a report about your injuries, for which you may need to be examined. The report will provide an expert opinion as to whether or not you were harmed because of medical negligence, and what the future prognosis is likely to be. More than one report may be needed.
- Sending a letter of claim to the Defendant Trust stating your intention to bring a claim against them and outlining the reasons for doing so
- Waiting for a letter of response from the Defendant, in which they will either admit liability or state their intention to defend the claim
- Issuing court proceedings, which does not mean you have to appear in court
- Calculating your actual financial loss and outlining a suitable sum of compensation
- Negotiating a compensation settlement with the other side
- Settling the claim, after which you will be given your compensation
Every medical negligence claim is different. Some will be more complex than others and may involve additional stages that are not outlined above.
How long does the claims process last?
Birth injury claims usually take around two to three years to settle. Other complex claims – such as cerebral palsy claims – will take a lot longer to settle.
Three years may seem like a very long time but it can take around three months just to obtain your medical records, and another six months to obtain a report from a medical expert. Therefore there are certain delays along the way which prolong the process.
Will I have to go to court?
It is very unusual for a medical negligence claim to go to court, especially claims regarding birth injuries. It is in the best interests of both sides to settle before action through the courts is necessary.
Where do I find more information?
If you would like any more information on making a claim for a birth injury, please get in touch with us today. We will put you through to a specialist solicitor who will be more than happy to answer your questions.