Championing Compensation for Those Impacted by Birth Injury Suffering

Unfortunately, according to CDC data, 6 out of every 1,000 infants born in the US experience significant birth injuries, including developmental disorders, fractures, and neurological problems. The accomplished birth injury lawyers at The Alvarez Law Firm in Massachusetts have a proven history of managing birth injury and complication cases. Our dedicated birth injury attorneys have the essential expertise, understanding, and resources to achieve positive results for your case.

Examples of Serious Birth Injuries

  • Cerebral Palsy: This is a group of disorders that affect movement and muscle coordination. It can be caused by brain damage during childbirth due to oxygen deprivation or trauma.
  • Erb's Palsy: This condition involves paralysis or weakness in the arm due to injury to the brachial plexus nerves during delivery, often resulting from excessive force or stretching during childbirth.
  • Brain Damage: Birth-related brain injuries can occur due to oxygen deprivation, trauma, or other complications during labor and delivery, leading to long-term neurological issues.
  • Fractures: Fractures, particularly of the clavicle or collarbone, can occur during difficult deliveries, such as when excessive force is applied during the birthing process.
  • Hypoxic-Ischemic Encephalopathy (HIE): This is a type of brain injury caused by oxygen deprivation and limited blood flow to the brain during childbirth, leading to potential long-term developmental and neurological issues.
  • Facial Nerve Injuries: These injuries can occur during delivery, leading to facial paralysis or weakness due to damage to the facial nerves.
  • Shoulder Dystocia Injuries: This occurs when a baby's shoulders become impacted during delivery, potentially leading to nerve damage, fractures, or other injuries.

What Are Some Common Causes of Massachusetts Birth Injuries that Count as Medical Malpractice?

Medical negligence, also known as malpractice, occurs when healthcare providers, including physicians, specialists, hospitals, or facilities, fail to provide care that meets established medical standards, leading to the patient's injury, illness, or deterioration of health.

Some common causes of birth injuries in Massachusetts that may be considered medical malpractice include:

  • Delayed or Improper Delivery: Failing to recognize signs of distress or complications during labor and delivery or improper use of delivery instruments can lead to birth injuries.
  • Failure to Monitor Fetal Distress: Inadequate monitoring of the baby's vital signs during labor can result in a delay in addressing fetal distress, leading to preventable birth injuries.
  • Medication Errors: Administering incorrect medications or improper dosages to the mother during labor and delivery can result in harm to the baby.
  • Failure to Perform a Timely Cesarean Section: In cases where a timely cesarean section is medically necessary but not performed, the delay can lead to birth injuries such as oxygen deprivation and brain damage.
  • Improper Use of Assisted Delivery Tools: Misuse or excessive force when using forceps or vacuum extractors during delivery can cause birth injuries to the baby.
  • Failure to Address Maternal Infections: Inadequate treatment of maternal infections or failure to diagnose and address them during pregnancy can lead to birth injuries in the baby.
  • Failure to Recognize and Respond to Complications: Inadequate response to complications such as umbilical cord entanglement, placental abruption, or fetal distress can result in birth injuries.
  • Inadequate Prenatal Care: Failure to identify and address maternal health issues or fetal abnormalities during prenatal care can lead to preventable birth injuries.
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How Do I Prove Medical Malpractice in a Birth Injury Lawsuit?

To prove medical malpractice in a Massachusetts birth injury lawsuit, several key elements need to be established:

Duty of Care

It must be demonstrated that the healthcare provider owed a duty of care to the mother and the baby during the prenatal, labor, and delivery process.

Breach of Duty

It must be shown that the healthcare provider breached the duty of care by failing to adhere to accepted medical standards or acting in a manner that deviated from what a reasonably competent healthcare provider would have done in similar circumstances.


It must be proven that the healthcare provider's breach of duty directly caused or significantly contributed to the birth injury. This involves establishing a direct link between the provider's actions or omissions and the resulting harm to the mother or the baby.


It must be demonstrated that the birth injury resulted in actual damages, such as medical expenses, pain and suffering, long-term disability, and other tangible or intangible losses. In Massachusetts, proving medical malpractice in a birth injury lawsuit often requires the testimony of expert witnesses, such as medical professionals specializing in obstetrics and neonatology, to provide opinions on the standard of care, the breach of that standard, and the causal relationship between the violation and the birth injury.

How Do I File a Birth Injury Claim in Massachusetts?

  1. Seek Legal Representation: The first step is to consult with an experienced birth injury attorney in Massachusetts. An attorney can evaluate the circumstances surrounding the birth injury, assess the potential for a legal claim, and guide you through the legal process.
  2. Investigation and Case Review: Your attorney will thoroughly investigate, including reviewing medical records, consulting with medical experts, and gathering evidence to support your claim. It's essential to provide your attorney with all relevant information and documentation related to the birth injury.
  3. Notice of Claim: In Massachusetts, before filing a lawsuit against a healthcare provider or facility, a Notice of Intent to File a Claim must be submitted within the applicable statute of limitations. This notice alerts the potential defendants of the intent to file a malpractice claim and provides an opportunity for pre-litigation settlement discussions.
  4. Filing the Lawsuit: If a resolution is not reached during the pre-litigation phase, your attorney will file a lawsuit in the appropriate Massachusetts court. The complaint will outline the allegations of medical malpractice, and the damages sought.
  5. Discovery Process: Both parties engage in the discovery process, during which evidence is exchanged, depositions may be taken, and expert witnesses may be identified.
  6. Settlement Negotiations or Trial: Depending on the circumstances of the case, there may be opportunities for settlement negotiations. If a settlement is not reached, the case may proceed to trial, where a judge or jury will determine the outcome.
  7. Resolution: If the case is successful, compensation may be awarded to cover medical expenses, pain and suffering, lost income, and other damages resulting from the birth injury.

Who Can Be Held Responsible for a Newborn Birth Injury?

In Massachusetts, potential parties that can be held responsible include:

Healthcare Providers

Obstetricians, midwives, nurses, anesthesiologists, and other medical professionals involved in the prenatal care, labor, and delivery process may be held accountable if their negligence, errors, or omissions directly contributed to the newborn's birth injury.

Hospitals and Medical Facilities

Hospitals and birthing centers can be held responsible for the actions or omissions of their staff members, as well as for systemic issues or inadequate policies that may have contributed to the birth injury.

Pharmaceutical Companies

In cases where a newborn's birth injury is linked to medication errors or defective drugs administered during pregnancy, pharmaceutical companies may be held liable for the harm caused.

Medical Device Manufacturers

If a birth injury is attributed to malfunctioning or improper use of medical devices during delivery, such as forceps or vacuum extractors, the manufacturers may bear responsibility.

Other Parties

Depending on the specific circumstances, additional parties, such as laboratories, radiologists, or other healthcare entities involved in caring for the mother and the newborn, may also be held responsible for a birth injury.

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What Compensation Can I Get for a Birth Injury Lawsuit in Massachusetts?

In Massachusetts, compensation for a birth injury lawsuit may include:

  • Medical Expenses: Compensation may cover past and future medical costs related to the birth injury, including hospitalization, surgeries, therapy, medication, and specialized care.
  • Rehabilitation and Therapy: Damages may include expenses for physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy, and other rehabilitative services to help the child recover and improve their quality of life.
  • Pain and Suffering: Compensation may be awarded for the physical pain, emotional distress, and mental anguish endured by the child and the family due to the birth injury.
  • Disability and Impairment: Damages may account for the long-term impact of the birth injury, including permanent disability, impairment, and the associated limitations on the child's quality of life.
  • Lost Earning Capacity: If the child's birth injury results in a reduced ability to earn income in the future, compensation may be awarded to address the financial impact of the diminished earning capacity.
  • Home Modifications and Accommodations: Damages may cover the costs of adapting the home environment to accommodate the child's special needs, such as wheelchair accessibility or specialized equipment.
  • Special Education and Care: Compensation may include the expenses associated with special education, tutoring, and other educational support tailored to the child's unique needs.
  • Future Medical and Care Costs: Damages may account for the anticipated future medical expenses and ongoing care required to address the long-term effects of the birth injury.
  • Loss of Enjoyment of Life: Compensation may be awarded to address the loss of the child's enjoyment of life and the impact of the birth injury on their ability to participate in activities and experiences.

Can I File a Wrongful Death Lawsuit for Birth Injuries in Massachusetts?

Yes, in Massachusetts, it is possible to file a wrongful death lawsuit for birth injuries under certain circumstances. Here’s what you need to know:

  • Under Massachusetts law, the wrongful death statute allows for the filing of a lawsuit when the negligence, recklessness, or wrongful act of another party causes a person's death. This includes situations where a newborn's death results from birth injuries that were caused by medical malpractice or healthcare provider negligence.
  • In a wrongful death lawsuit for birth injuries, the parents or legal representatives of the deceased infant may seek compensation for various damages, including funeral and burial expenses, medical costs, loss of companionship, and the emotional and financial impact of the child's death.
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What is the Statute of Limitations for Birth Injuries in Massachusetts?

In Massachusetts, the statute of limitations for birth injury lawsuits is generally three years from the injury date or when the injury should have been reasonably discovered.

However, there are exceptions and variations in different circumstances, particularly for minor cases. For example, for birth injury claims involving minors, Massachusetts law allows for tolling of the statute of limitations, meaning that the time limit is paused until the child reaches the age of majority.

In such cases, the statute of limitations typically begins to run when the child turns 18 years old, and the minor has until their 21st birthday to file a lawsuit for a birth injury that occurred during their birth or infancy.

Your case may be limited in the time you can file it so that is why it is important to contact your Massachusetts attorney to review as soon as possible. 

Alvarez Law Firm: Guiding You Towards Justice for Birth Injuries in Massachusetts

Mistakes that happen during pregnancy or childbirth can transform a joyous occasion into a heartbreaking one. The respected birth injury lawyers at The Alvarez Law Firm have assisted many families in securing the compensation they deserve from negligent healthcare providers across the country and are ready to help in Massachusetts.

"Integrity for justice" is not just a slogan; it is the cornerstone of our approach. Our firm offers empathetic and supportive legal counsel to assist you in seeking responsibility from healthcare providers for your child's injuries. Contact us today to arrange a complimentary and confidential consultation with one of our skilled medical malpractice attorneys in Massachusetts.

Let’s talk about your case.

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