Illinois Jaundice Attorney
An unusually high bilirubin level is one of the most common labor and delivery complications, especially among preterm infants. At high levels, this red blood cell pigment is extremely toxic and can cause permanent brain damage. Since the condition is so serious, the standard of care is extremely high. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, the medical team must perform a bilirubin test at least once every twelve hours, even if the child is not at risk for jaundice and displays no other symptoms.
Test administration and results interpretation are among the most common negligence issues in birth injury cases. Bilirubin tests are quite expensive. So, instead of two or three, doctors often try to get by with one or two. Jaundice comes on so quickly that one missed test could have significant consequences for the baby’s health. Furthermore, these tests are so routine that many nurses and patient care technicians, who often administer these tests and examine the results, miss tiny red flags.
In contrast, the diligent Illinois jaundice attorneys at Wais, Vogelstein, Forman, Koch & Norman always thoroughly prepare your case and always go where the evidence takes us. This case preparation includes collecting medical bills and other proof and reviewing the ever-changing laws in this area. Based on this review, we give you solid legal advice about your options. These options usually include a medical negligence claim. If that’s the case, we never stop fighting for you in court.
What is Medical Negligence?
Basically, negligence is an unintentional injury. There are four components of a negligence case in Illinois:
- Duty: Physicians have a fiduciary duty. That’s the highest legal responsibility level in Illinois. Doctors have such a high duty because they have almost total control over the mother’s and baby’s health and safety.
- Breach: Essentially, a breach of duty is a violation of the standard of care. Since the duty of care is so high, almost any lapse constitutes a breach of duty. Despite what doctors often claim, birth complications don’t just happen.
- Cause: Factual causation is a connection between the breach and the damages. In a negligence claim, cause also involves legal causation. The damages must be a foreseeable (possible) consequence of the breach.
- Damage: Medical injuries and the accompanying emotional distress are the primary damages in a birth injury claim. Victims need and deserve compensation for both kinds of losses.
Duty is usually a matter of law for a judge to decide. Chicago jaundice attorneys must present evidence on the other points and prove each one by a preponderance of the evidence (more likely than not).
What to Expect in Your Claim for Damages
Almost all birth injury claims settle out of court. A few settle almost immediately. However, in most cases, attorneys must file legal paperwork to pressure the insurance company into negotiating a settlement.
After a filling, most insurance company attorneys file pretrial motions and try to derail the claim. As long as there is some evidence and a decent legal argument to support the claim, these motions almost always fail.
Usually, the discovery process follows the pretrial process. During this phase, both sides exchange evidence as to their claims and defenses. So, it’s easier to determine a claim’s settlement value.
Once both sides agree on this value, the claim usually settles. This settlement usually includes compensation for economic losses, such as medical bills, and noneconomic losses, such as pain and suffering. Additional punitive damages are usually available as well. These damages deter future misconduct and therefore protect other families.
Reach out to a Savvy Chicago Cook County Attorney
Injury victims are usually entitled to significant compensation. For a free consultation with an experienced jaundice injury attorney in Chicago, contact Wais, Vogelstein, Forman, Koch & Norman by going online or calling 410-567-0800. You have a limited amount of time to act.