Florida Medical Malpractice Laws Cover Wrongful Birth Cases
Pregnancy should be a joyous and heartwarming experience for women, but elation can turn to devastation upon the discovery that a baby might be born with a serious medical condition or genetic ailment. Though it’s not the right decision for everyone, many mothers-to-be opt to terminate the pregnancy; whereas others might decide to move forward and bring the child into a loving family. Under either scenario, it is important to have a full, comprehensive picture of what to expect.
Unfortunately, there are circumstances where a health care provider makes a critical mistake, rendering it impossible for a woman to make an informed decision. In legal terms, these matters are referred to as Florida wrongful birth cases, and you may have options if you find yourself in such a situation.
Wrongful Birth as a Medical Malpractice Claim: Florida’s medical malpractice statute allows for a cause of action when a health care provider’s treatment is not in conformance with the generally accepted standard of care in the relevant field. A wrongful birth claim is one where the parents have grounds to sue because they weren’t offered an opportunity to avoid giving birth to the child – often through termination of the pregnancy. The infant is usually born with traumatic, life-altering defects, and the parents were never told of the circumstances.
Elements of a Wrongful Birth Case: As a form of medical malpractice, there are certain sets of facts you must prove to prevail in a wrongful birth case. Generally, you need to establish a breach of the standard of care. When a fetus possesses a serious medical issue, the focus is on what a prudent physician – such as an OB/GYN or neonatal practitioner – would have done under similar circumstances. A physician may commit errors such as:
- Failing to properly diagnose a medical condition affecting the fetus
- Withholding information regarding the likelihood that the child would have a severe ailment
- Not counseling the parents on the probability that the infant would develop a serious medical condition
Compensation in Florida Wrongful Birth Cases: The key to recovering monetary damages in a wrongful birth claim focuses on the losses resulting from the physician’s failure to conform to the standard of care. The medical costs, especially in-home, 24/7 care for a child with a severe birth defect can be very high. Plus, there are the emotional consequences for the entire family. In a successful claim, it’s possible to recover for these losses and many more – depending on the details of your case.
Contact a Florida Wrongful Birth and Birth Injuries Lawyer to Discuss Your Rights
If you have questions or concerns about a wrongful birth matter, it’s important to discuss your legal options with a skilled wrongful birth and birth injuries attorney. The lives of your entire family have been immeasurably changed, and you could incur significant losses through a physician’s mistake. For more information on your rights and remedies, please contact the Miami birth injury lawyers at Freidin Brown, P.A. to set up a free consultation at our offices.