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Birth Injury Lawasuit Settlements: How to Value Cases

Child Birth Medical MalpracticeIn medical malpractice litigation, birth injury cases are some of the most serious, complicated, and costly. They are costly in terms of the effect they have on patients. These events come at the victim's earliest part of their lives.

The malpractice of the doctor, nurse, facility, or other party forever puts the person on a different path of life. The new path promises increased suffering, costs, and pain. For these reasons, Illinois birth injury jury awards and settlements garner a lot of attention.

The sections that follow highlight relevant topics for birth injury settlements. They should help you understand why these victims obtain the recoveries that they do.

Please review the pages below for specific information on different types of birth injury cases:

  • How Much are Childbirth Injury Cases Worth?
  • How Much are Cerebral Palsy Birth Injury Cases Worth?
  • How Much are Brachial Plexus Injury Cases Worth?
  • How Much are Childbirth Brain Injury Cases Worth?
  • How Much are Childbirth Wrongful Death Cases Worth?
  • How Much are C-Section Malpractice Cases Worth?

Past Birth Injury Settlement and Cases

Illinois birth injury cases have a variety of topics and categories. Newborn children face a wide array of risks and dangers. Those challenges create an innumerable list of possible injuries anyone of which could have been caused by malpractice.

If injury does arise, however, you can be sure that the consequences will be severe. In the next few paragraphs, we have summarized some Illinois child birth awards and settlements. These will you better understand the numbers behind the claims.

Then, you can speak to one of our experienced child birth injury attorneys to see how the laws of Illinois may afford you relief if your child was harmed during birth.

How Much are Childbirth Injury Cases Worth?

Childbirth injury cases are higher than those of older patients with similar harms because it will affect them much longer, and because they are defendants. These summaries exhibit what relief is possible for victims of childbirth injuries.

Case: Estate Of J.M. vs. Undisclosed Central Illinois Hospital
Recovery: $3,750,000 Settlement

This case centered on an inattentive medical staff and a women going into labor. The woman thought her pregnancy was beginning so she called her doctor. The nurse told her to time her contractions and call back shortly. The mother called back several times but no one answered. When someone at the doctor's office finally did pick up the phone, they told her to come to their office instead of the emergency room even though she showed signs of preterm labor and placental abruption.

After arriving, it took nearly half an hour before her C-section could begin because staff had not prepared for the procedure. Due to these failures, the child was born with Cerebral Palsy. Preferring to settle, both sides arrived at $3,750,000 as an appropriate sum for the kid's injuries.

Case: Thomas vs. Antony M.D.
Jurisdiction: Cook County
Recovery: $9,697,693 AWARD

This suit arose when a child was born with severe mental deficiencies. Lawyers for the child argued that his mother had gestational diabetes but that the doctor did not consult with her primary obstetrician about this. As a result, it was never treated. The doctor responded that her role as an HMO provider physician limited her scope of care to blood testing and other administrative functions.

Rather than try this issue before a jury, however, the defendant sought to settle and did so for $1,000,000 with the plaintiff. Fortunately, the plaintiff was still able to obtain another $8,697,693 from the doctor's employer bringing the total to $9,697,693.

Case: Salinas vs. Struwe
Jurisdiction: Lake County
Recovery: $4,000,000 Award

This incident occurred during delivery when the treating doctor failed to perform adequately. Specifically, he did not respond to signs that indicated the child was suffering from fetal distress. As a result, the newborn had severe brain injuries that would significantly hamper his ability to walk and speak. A jury awarded the child's estate $4,000,000.

Case: Offenwanger vs. Good Shepherd Hospital
Jurisdiction: Lake County
Recovery: $750,000

This litigation focused on the issue of the standard of care. During a pregnancy, medical staff called an anesthetist for consultation but the latter did not respond for almost an hour. The plaintiffs contended that this negligent care fell below accepted standards and caused the child to die. The child's estate recovered $750,000 for this wrongful death.

Case: Burnett vs. West Suburban Medical Center
Jurisdiction: Cook County
Recovery: $2,900,000

In this case, plaintiffs charged the doctor that delivered their child with medical malpractice for the manner in which he performed the operation. The complaint alleged that he pulled too hard on the shoulder of the newborn and damaged her back and neck.

The force resulted in brachial plexus and general nerve damage. They argued this was proof that the physician failed to meet the proper standard of care for the procedure. The doctor defendant denied liability but was unable to convince the jury of his innocence. They awarded the child's estate $2,900,000.

For additional information on West Suburban Hospital, look here.


This controversy happened during childbirth. According to the woman who went into labor, the obstetrician negligently delivered her child. As proof, she showed that he failed to follow proper procedures and did not resuscitate the newborn as needed. Due to this conduct, the child sustained severe brain damage and cerebral palsy. Both parties settled after trial for $5,250,000.

Case: Harrington vs. Bird
Jurisdiction: Cook County
Recovery: $300,000

The victim in this situation was a 28-year-old woman. She was having a difficult time during labor and after nine hours the doctor decided to induce her utilizing a Scanzoni procedure. Unfortunately, while attempting this maneuver, he lacerated her skin and gave her a rectal sphincter disorder and rectovaginal fistula. The woman sued the doctor said her injuries were proof of his negligence. He denied these allegations and replied that the procedure was correct for the circumstances.

The jury disagreed and found for the woman for $300,000 for the following damages:

  • Medical: $17,275
  • Wages: $12,258
  • Pain and Suffering: $175,467
  • Punitive: $70,000
  • Loss of Services: $25,000
  • Total: $300,000

How Much are Cerebral Palsy Birth Injury Cases Worth?

Cerebral Palsy settlements and awards dramatically outstrip the average for medical malpractice because of the patient's new disability and the extraordinary financial impact that will impose upon them and the family. These case summaries exemplify that trend.

2013; Illinois; $3,750,000 Settlement:

The pregnant mother in this case called her doctors when she was experiencing pain and bleeding in her abdomen. Later reports found that she was in the middle of preterm labor and had symptoms of placental abruption. Nevertheless, after calling two and three times, staff at the doctor's office told her to remain call and come to their office even though going to an emergency room would have probably been more advisable.

Once she got there, doctors were not ready to perform the Cesarean section for nearly half an hour. The baby that was delivered had cerebral palsy. The representatives of the child claimed that these failures caused the condition in the child and sought damages from the hospital and treating doctors. They settled out of court for $3,750,000 with the hospital paying the bulk of this amount.

2013; Illinois; $5,750,000 Settlement:

This story involved a woman who was having a hard time delivering her baby. Doctors failed to realize that the drugs she was prescribed precluded her from pushing the baby out of her. Further, they did not take steps to accelerate the process and, therefore, the baby was delivered late.

The consequence of this was that it was born with cerebral palsy and other related brain injuries. The parents sued their medical providers under the Illinois Family Expense Act and the hospital and doctors agreed to settle for $5,750,000.

2011; Illinois; $5,000,000 Settlement:

This tragedy involved a pregnancy gone awry. A woman went to the emergency room when she started going into labor. Doctors ordered her to undergo a Cesarean section at approximately 10:30 at night. However, this procedure did not initiate until nearly an hour after that and, simultaneously, nurses gave her Pitocin and oxygen.

Eventually, the baby was born with cerebral palsy, quadriplegia, mental retardation, and other injuries. The child's parents sued the doctor and hospital for this chain of events. They contended that the delay and combination of medications gave the child these defects. Recognizing defeat, the defendants offered to settle and the plaintiffs agreed for $5,000,000.

How Much are Brachial Plexus Injury Cases Worth?

Brachial plexus cases are worth close to or a little more than the average for childbirth injury awards. These sums compensate children for the pain, expense and long-term effects of the incident. Review the case summaries below for more analysis.

$750,000 Settlement; Illinois Brachial Plexus Claim.

This lawsuit emanated from a hospital in Champaign, Illinois. The child involved had fetal macrosomia condition. That means it was larger than average. That issue creates various issues and challenges during birth. To address that, doctors are required to have an expert on hand in case anything goes wrong. Apparently, they did not do that here.

To make matters worse, the medical team used too much force during the baby's delivery. The child sustained a brachial plexus injury. She also experienced reduced motion, shoulder weakness, and Erb’s palsy.

The baby's representatives brought this action against the hospital for the birth injuries she suffered and the long-term effects they would have including disability, suffering, medical bills, and decreased earning potential. After a lengthy back and forth, the hospital directly gave the plaintiff $750,000.

$1,600,000 Settlement; Illinois Brachial Plexus Claim.

The baby involved in this cause of action was a little boy. Again, like most brachial plexus disputes, this incident involved a doctor carelessly using too much force in the performance of the child's delivery.

Here, the physician used traction and that put the force on the baby that caused the damage. The child suffered not only a brachial plexus injury but also nerve damage. Additionally, both his hand and arm were disabled. His medical bills alone were over $200,000 from the events.

A case was brought on his behalf against the hospital and eventually the facility's insurers. The parties settled for a reported $1.6 million for the child's damages including pain, disability, and expenses.

How Much are Childbirth Brain Injury Cases Worth?

The median and average for childbirth brain injury awards and settlements is higher than you might think. Yet, if you consider the long-term care, medical, professional, and financial implications of this malpractice, the sums may begin to make more sense. The summaries below will help put things in perspective as well.

$1,450,000 Settlement; Illinois Brain Injury Claim.

This incident started when a pregnant woman began to experience health complications in Chicago, Illinois. Doctors eventually noticed the issue and tried to control the problem. However, they were slow to initiate a C-section for the baby boy. That delay had serious complications. He began to lose air.

Then, he suffered a massive brain injury from that oxygen deprivation. The events eventually caused him to develop epilepsy and cerebral palsy. The doctors claimed that they worked as fast as they could in the small amount of time that they had. However, the damage was undeniable. Plus, there was no refuting that quicker action would have mitigated some of the effects that the mother and newborn experienced.

Eventually, claims were brought against the doctors and hospital on behalf of the family. The family's damages were extraordinary: past and future medical care; disability; suffering; lost income opportunities; and much more. The family obtained a combined settlement of $1,450,000 from the defendants for all of their harms and losses.

$5,000,000 Settlement; Illinois Brain Injury Claim

This Illinois birth injury lawsuit came years after the delivery. Also, it was hotly contested. The plaintiffs complained that the defendants did not properly monitor the birth, start a C-section, or avoid the use of excessive force. Consequently, in their opinion, the child suffered a brain injury which rendered him disabled and unable to speak.

Specifically, they claimed that his airway was crushed by the umbilical cord in the process of his birth due to the negligence of the defendants. The events surrounding his birth caused the family an additional $250,000. This figure did not include the round-the-clock care and attention he would require for the rest of his life.

The defendants did not openly admit their responsibility for the developments. Instead, they argued that the child experienced oxygen deprivation prior to their service and that they took reasonable steps to address the escalating issue. However, faced with a prolonged civil jury trial, the defendants opted to settle. The family received $5 million combined from the defendant doctors and hospital.

How Much are Childbirth (Stillbirth) Wrongful Death Cases Worth?

Childbirth wrongful death claims average the highest awards and settlements compared to other newborn baby malpractice cases. Why? A life is robbed and a family is gutted. The case summaries below represent similar stories.

$1,900,000 Settlement; Illinois Wrongful Death Claim

The events which gave rise to this controversy occurred in 2014. A mother went into labor when the baby was just thirty-eight weeks into gestation. The woman rushed right to the emergency room but her doctor was not there. However, there was another doctor on hand that could have attended to her. Staff on call decided to phone the woman's doctor.

It took approximately a half hour for the physician arrive. During that time, staff noticed that the baby was suffering from slow heart rate. Unfortunately, this condition went unaddressed for a period of time. Consequently, even when the child was delivered, the little baby had major health problems. The child died just a little over three weeks later from these complications.

This case was brought against the doctors and medical company involved in the incident. The plaintiffs claimed that the defendants were negligent in their care of the child and responsible for his untimely death. The case sought recompense for all the damages that followed from this tragedy. In a private agreement to end the claim, the defendants gave the family $1.9 million for their losses.

$2,000,000 Settlement; Illinois Wrongful Death Claim

This birth injury case transpired over a number of visits to the same Illinois medical facility. A mother showed signs of high blood pressure at her on/gyn on two different occasions spread out over three days. Doctors told her to come back a few days later for an induced birth rather than keeping her there for observation.

When that day arrived, the woman went into labor before she could get to the hospital. During that birth, the child sustained a brain injury and subsequently passed away two weeks later. Lawyers for the family maintained that it was negligent for her health care providers to let her leave.

The plaintiffs stated that the defendants' malpractice caused or substantially contributed to the baby's death. They sought compensation for their damages including grief and medical bills (which totaled almost $300,000). The medical facility quickly looked to settle after replying to the complaint. They offered the family $2 million for their losses. The family agreed to settle.

How Much are C-Section Malpractice Cases Worth?

C-Section malpractice claims are in line with other childbirth injury lawsuits. Families can obtain tens of thousands to hundreds of thousands of dollars in recovery for their child's pain, family's expenses, and related harms and losses. See these case summaries below to get a more precise sense of what relief is possible for your newborn.

$8,900,000 Settlement; Illinois C-Section Claim

Here, a pregnant woman presented to a Chicago-area hospital with several troubling symptoms. Staff admitted her and began to run a variety of diagnostic tests including a sonogram. Allegedly, doctors misinterpreted the results of this exam. Subsequently, they did not transfer her and initiate a C-section.

When her child was finally born, they realized that the baby boy had suffered a hemorrhage and oxygen deprivation during the birth. This led to cerebral palsy and other life-altering conditions.

The mother filed a suit on his behalf. It alleged that the defendants negligently failed to diagnose the woman, order a timely C-section, or otherwise prevent the boy from sustaining injury during labor. In her opinion, all of these errors led to his injuries and her damages. The two attending medical professionals chose to settle with the family prior to trial for $8.9 million.

$4,000,000 Settlement; Illinois C-Section Claim

This medical malpractice action kicked off when a woman entered a medical center in Cook County, Illinois. She had been experiencing side effects related to preeclampsia. Also, the woman was pregnant at the time. However, staff at the facility did not put two and two together.

Due to her condition and pregnancy, staff should have immediately ordered up a C-section. They failed to do so and the baby sustained fatal injuries. The mother brought this cause of action against the facility for negligence and wrongful death.

The claim alleged various errors and omissions committed by the defendant related to misdiagnosis, surgical treatment, and birth injuries. Eventually, these claims were not aired before a jury, because they settled for $4 million.

Call Our Birth Injury Legal Team Today to Discuss the Potential Settlement Value of Your Case

If your child was harmed during the course of his or her birth, Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers can make sure you get the help you need to deal with medical expenses, prescriptions, rehabilitative care, lost income, and seemingly endless list of bills that pile up.

Our team has experience representing newborn victims of medical malpractice. We have gone up against large medical corporations, rich doctors, and other well-resourced healthcare defendants. Contact us to hear about how you can get relief. Our calls are free and come with no obligation. Put your child on the path to recovery. Call today and protect your child's future.

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