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Birth injury claims

Empathetic legal experts to support you through your birth injury claim

If a medical professional has failed to meet the standards necessary to keep you and your baby safe during childbirth, and their actions (or inaction) has had life-changing consequences or even endangered your baby’s life, you could pursue a birth injury claim for compensation.

Complications during childbirth are not uncommon. Sadly, some result in unavoidable injury to the mother, baby or both – everything that could have been done, was done. However, some could have been prevented or dealt with differently.

If your newborn suffered an injury that could have been avoided before, during or immediately after birth, you may be entitled to compensation. Our specialist birth injury claims solicitors have the expertise, experience and empathy to help you get the compensation, treatment and support you need and, importantly, the answers you deserve.

Request a free birth injury claim assessment

Call 0800 316 8892 or get in touch online to speak to a medical negligence solicitor who specialises in birth injury claims and is accredited on the Action Against Medical Accidents (AvMA) and Law Society clinical negligence panels. This consultation is free and you’re under no obligation to go any further.

We will listen carefully to your experience and advise you on whether your birth injury claim is likely to be successful. We’ll also talk you through your options to fund your claim, including a ‘no win, no fee’ arrangement, where you don’t have to pay anything for our advice if your claim isn’t successful.

On this page

Types of birth brain injury claims

We have considerable experience acting for children who have suffered devastating complications that have resulted in brain injury, either during or shortly after childbirth.

For example:

  • Hypoxic brain injuries
  • Impacted head injuries
  • Delays in performing a caesarean section
  • Delayed or missed diagnosis of a bacterial infection in the mother
  • Delayed or missed diagnosis of neonatal infections such as Group B strep, sepsis, meningitis, and pneumonia
  • Pre-eclampsia
  • Traumatic birth injuries to the head – such as excessive force or inappropriate use of Ventouse or forceps during assisted delivery

Birth brain injury claims can be very complex, so it’s essential to instruct a medical negligence solicitor, like Clarke Willmott, experienced in these types of cases. If the claim is successful, our priority will be to secure your child compensation to access the therapy, treatment, rehabilitation and home adaptations they need to live as comfortably and independently as possible.

Cerebral palsy compensation claims

The most common birth brain injury is cerebral palsy, which can be caused by a number of complications during pregnancy, childbirth or shortly after. When that complication can be directly attributed to negligent medical care, your child may be entitled to claim compensation.

A child born with cerebral palsy will have lifelong care needs and the impact of their needs on the parents will be life changing.

Our medical negligence solicitors have the expertise and experience of cerebral palsy claims that is crucial to your chances of success. These claims are complicated, they take a long time to investigate and value, require expert evidence and are also far more likely to be strongly defended, especially when the compensation amount is high.

Read how our specialist cerebral palsy claims solicitors have recovered significant compensation for our clients:

Legal Aid for birth brain injury claims

Clarke Willmott is one of the few firms able to obtain Legal Aid funding for birth injury claims, which reflects the depth of our expertise.

There are strict rules which govern Legal Aid and not all claims will be eligible. Your solicitor will advise you on whether your birth injury claim meets the criteria for Legal Aid.

Erb’s palsy claims

Erb’s Palsy (also known as brachial plexus palsy) refers to weakness or paralysis of arm or shoulder muscles after a complicated birth. It can be caused by negligence on the part of a healthcare professional involved in the birth.

For example:

  • Unnecessary delays in performing a caesarean section
  • Excessive force during assisted delivery
  • Not taking appropriate steps to protect mother and baby when the baby was known to be large
  • Poor management of shoulder dystocia
  • Delayed diagnosis of Erb’s Palsy following the birth

Other traumatic birth injury claims

Our specialist birth injury solicitors have also represented women and children who have sustained other injuries during a traumatic birth as a direct result of negligent care, including post-partum haemorrhage leading to hysterectomy and anal sphincter injuries.

Stillbirth and neonatal death

While medical negligence may not be the cause of a stillbirth or neonatal death, sadly there are times when failings in the care given during pregnancy, labour or birth have tragic consequences. The important thing to remember is you’re not alone. Our specialist solicitors can help you claim compensation so you can start rebuilding your life.

Injuries to mother during pregnancy or childbirth

Our specialist solicitors also provide expert and empathetic legal advice to mothers who have been harmed or injured unnecessarily during pregnancy or labour. We understand that pursuing a maternity negligence claim may be the last thing you want to do, but we can support you through the process. Making a claim can be a constructive way to get the answers and help you need, as well as helping prevent the same thing from happening again.

Supporting the MASIC Foundation

Clarke Willmott are proud supporters of The MASIC Foundation, a charity dedicated to supporting women

MASIC logo

who have suffered injuries during childbirth. Our medical negligence team has partnered with the charity for the past 4 years and is part of their network of legal partners, endorsed by the Trustees of MASIC.

We understand that birth injuries can have life-altering consequences for both mothers and babies. In 2021, we sponsored MASIC’s webinar that focused on understanding the emotional consequences of birth trauma with the aim of supporting those affected.

To view the recorded event, please click on the thumbnail picture:

MASIC logo
Click the image to watch the webinar recording


Birth injury compensation – why choose us?

  • Recognised medical negligence experts – accredited member of The Law Society and AvMA specialist clinical negligence panels, so you can be confident you’ll receive quality service and value for money.
  • Empathetic and understanding approach – we’ll listen to you to understand what you’ve been through and the impact it has had on you, your child and your family, so we can ensure your treatment, recovery and long-term needs are met.
  • Committed to your future – we don’t stop at seeking the right compensation for your child. We’ll also make your child gets all the support they need to help them make the best possible recovery or live the fullest life with their injury.
  • Proven record of recovering compensation – our medical negligence team has considerable experience and an excellent track record of winning birth injury compensation claims, some worth several million pounds.
  • Legal support beyond your claim – as a full-service law firm, we have solicitors with specific experience in managing large sums of compensation for minor children and adults lacking capacity, such as advice on how to invest compensation, Court of Protection deputyships and trusts.

Speak to a specialist birth injury solicitor today

If you or your baby have sustained an injury during pregnancy or childbirth you believe could have been prevented, call 0800 316 8892 or get in touch online to book a free consultation with a medical negligence solicitor who specialises in birth injury compensation claims.

What our clients say

“From the moment Kerry Fifield took on our case she demonstrated nothing but compassion, understanding and professionalism. As a family, we felt understood, listened to and supported which was imperative for us at the time.” RM

“Excellent service and very professional. Big thanks to Kerry for all her help. We saved lives and raised awareness. Couldn’t be happier and more grateful that Lily did not die for nothing.” Phil from Lincolnshire

“Kerry helped me through the claim process with genuine care, attention to detail, tenacity and good humour. There were difficult times but Kerry was our ace in the hole – it takes a lot of worry away when you know such an important matter is in such very good hands.” John

Vanessa Harris was always the most helpful person to me and my family. She handled my case with understanding for which we thank her. On the two occasions we visited your offices all the staff were kindness itself and we were made to feel welcome. Thank you for your professional but caring manner.” Eileen from Frome

“Vanessa, many thanks for all your hard work and patience to achieve such a helpful result with our complaint…5 years ago, I was in shock from the whole experience and trying to understand what had happened, and more to the point, gone wrong. I really feel that the outcome will help me draw a line over the negative things that have been so present and look more positively on the next stage of living well.”

Your birth injury questions answered

What are the next steps if I think I have a claim?

What are the next steps if I think I have a claim?

The first thing that you need to do is contact a solicitor and they will be able to advise you about whether there are sufficient grounds to make a claim or whether the claim would warrant further investigation.

So, I would recommend that you contact the clinical negligence team who will be able to advise you, and you can find our details of how to contact us on our website.

What types of claims do we help with?

What types of birth injury and pregnancy claims do we deal with?

We deal with a broad range of pregnancy compensation claims.  So, this is injuries that have been sustained by mothers during the delivery of the baby, and it can be psychiatric injuries or it can be physical injuries.

And the physical injuries are usually injuries that result in incontinence, whether that’s faecal incontinence or urinary incontinence. But they obviously have a very significant impact on the people that are suffering them.

How can I pay for my claim?

One of the big things that concerns people when thinking about contacting a lawyer is how much is it going to cost them. And what we can do, is we can reassure you on that at the very start because we will be looking for the best solution for you. That can include working with you to see if you’ve already got any existing insurance cover that will cover your legal costs.

The alternative and most common way that we proceed with cases is on a no win, no fee basis. Which means that  there is little or no risk to the client. They are regulated by our regulator and so you can guarantee that it will be a proper product, you’ll be given full advice at the outset so that you can decide whether you want to proceed, but financially there should be very little risk, in fact no risk to you.

It’s important to consider how you’re going to pay your legal expenses especially as the cost of pursuing a medical negligence claim can be high. However, there are funding options available that could help reduce the expense, such as an existing insurance policy covering claims of this nature, a Conditional Fee Agreement (often called ‘no win no fee’) or legal aid.

Before you embark on your claim, we will talk you through:

  • The potential cost of pursuing your medical negligence claim
  • What percentage of these costs you might get back
  • What funding options are available to you.

How much compensation could I get?

How much compensation will I get?

That is one of the key things that most people want to know, when they’re considering making a clinical negligence claim. And unfortunately, it’s not something we are able to tell you at the outset of a claim.

Damages for clinical negligence claims are broken into two categories. One is general damages for the pain and suffering and loss of amenity that you’ve experienced. And, the second is special damages. in relation to the losses and expenses that you’ve incurred. And until we’ve investigated the claim and know details about your current condition, your prognosis and all of the losses and expenses that you’re incurred and are likely to incur in the future, we’re just not in a position to provide you with an accurate valuation of your claim.

It’s also important to note that every case is different. In our jurisdiction, we have a system that’s what we call a compensatory system. The object of bringing the claim is to put you back in the same position you would have been in, as best money can, as if you’ve never had the accident. So it’s impossible to say for any given case at the outset how much money people will get.

If I have a claim, how long will it take?

How long will my claim take?

If you have a claim, it can take anywhere between, 12 months and several years to come to a conclusion, and there’s really a lot of varying factors.

I would hope that most claims would come to a conclusion within about three years.

However, everybody’s case is different. Some people can reach a final position within a matter of a few months or a year or so, other people require much more lengthy rehabilitation, perhaps a number of other medical procedures. And this is important because we will only want to try to settle your claim when we can reasonably predict the future. And in doing so, that makes sure that we get the right level of compensation for you.

Is there a time limit on making a birth injury claim?

If your birth injury claim is for your baby, you have until their 18th birthday to make a claim on their behalf. After their 18th birthday they have until their 21st birthday to make a claim themselves.

If your child is considered mentally incapable, there is no time limit to making a birth injury claim.

If your child dies due to a birth injury, you have three years from the date they passed away to make a claim.

Contact a birth injury solicitor

If you or your baby were injured during birth and you want legal advice about making a birth injury compensation claim, call us now on 0800 316 8892 or contact us online. Your initial consultation is free and you’re under no obligation to go further if you don’t want to.

Your key contacts

Marguarita Tyne

Head of Personal Injury & Medical Negligence

Marguarita Tyne is a claimant clinical negligence solicitor who investigates and brings claims on behalf of patients who have been injured during the course of their medical treatment, acting mainly (but not exclusively) for brain injury claimants in high value and often complex litigation.
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Kerry Fifield

Partner and Clinical Negligence Team Manager

Kerry’s primary focus is the needs of the client and their family when pursuing a claim, taking into account that each client is an individual with specific requirements who needs to be supported in addition to the legal investigation.
View profile for Kerry Fifield >

Meet our personal injury and medical negligence team

With seven offices throughout England and Wales, Clarke Willmott is a national law firm with a local presence. Click to learn more about our wider team of legal professionals and how they can support you.

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