An Iowa cerebral palsy lawyer is the best ally families can have when fighting for justice, equal rights, and compensation for their disabled children. Getting a diagnosis of cerebral palsy for your baby may seem devastating, but it doesn’t have to mean your child won’t live a long and satisfying life. Treatments, therapies, and interventions are effective in managing symptoms.
But those treatments cost money, and your child may need care and assistance for life. A lawyer who specializes in these kinds of cases and who has a deep understanding of medical malpractice laws in the state can help your family fight for justice. Holding accountable those responsible for your child’s disability can also mean recovering damages to cover the costs of care for years to come.
When Families Need an Iowa Cerebral Palsy Lawyer
How do you know if you need a lawyer to help your child? If your child was diagnosed with cerebral palsy there is a chance that a preventable medical mistake caused the brain damage that led to this condition. You may not be sure, but you will need an Iowa cerebral palsy lawyer to help you investigate, gather evidence, and determine if you should file a medical malpractice lawsuit.
If your child is school-aged and living with cerebral palsy, you may need a lawyer to help ensure he or she gets all the educational services, access, and opportunity to which they are entitled. Disability rights are guaranteed by federal and state laws, and if an institution is violating your child’s rights, you may need to take legal action.
How the Right Lawyer Can Help Your Family
Iowa cerebral palsy lawyers are not just general lawyers. They are experts in medical malpractice laws in the state and in birth injuries and cerebral palsy. They can help you better understand the complicated laws and what steps you need to take to get justice for your child. A medical malpractice case means going up against the large legal teams of insurance companies. You can’t do this alone, and the right lawyer will give you the best chance of making a successful case.
With a good lawyer by your side you have a chance to hold accountable those medical professionals whose inadequate care caused your child’s disability. While that justice feels good, what’s even more helpful is getting compensation to provide for your child’s needs over the years. And, a good lawyer can ensure your child gets access to any services at school that are necessary for a free and appropriate education.
Iowa Medical Malpractice Laws
Every state has its own set of laws regarding medical malpractice lawsuits, which is one reason these cases can be so complicated. You need to know the laws in the state to make the best decisions, even when relying on a knowledgeable lawyer.
The statute of limitations on these cases in Iowa is two years. This means you have two years from the time of the negligent incident or from the time when you discovered that it occurred to file a lawsuit. There is a hard limit of six years after the incident. After that point you can no longer seek justice through the court system.
Reforms enacted in 2017 in Iowa instituted a certificate of merit requirement for medical malpractice cases. Before you can file a lawsuit you must come up with this certificate that proves your case is valid and not frivolous. It must be signed by an expert witness. It can be tough to come up with this certificate without the help of a lawyer familiar with these kinds of cases. Iowa also added a cap of just $250,000 on non-economic damages, so you will be limited in how much you can recover for pain or emotional suffering.
Rights for the Disabled in Iowa
Federal laws like the Americans with Disabilities Act and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act provide for equal rights, access, and opportunities for the disabled in every state. Iowa additionally has the Iowa Civil Rights Act, which further ensures rights and access. A lawyer with experience in these cases can help you hold institutions accountable to these laws.
For instance, your disabled child is entitled to a free and appropriate education. Your public school must provide your child with an education as close to that of other, non-disabled children as possible. It has to provide special education services, devices, and technology needed for this purpose. And if the school falls short, you can take legal action.
Cases Won by Iowa Cerebral Palsy Lawyers
There are many examples of lawyers in Iowa getting justice and recovering damages for families like yours. In 2012, a family was awarded $3.75 million in a settlement over their child’s birth injuries and resulting cerebral palsy. The family’s lawyer successfully showed that doctors used Pitocin, a hormone that speeds up labor, inappropriately for the mother. The drug caused excessive contractions, which in turn caused damage to the baby’s head and brain.
In a more recent case in Iowa, a family won over $14 million after having a child with severe disabilities from cerebral palsy. During pregnancy, the mother had been told that the fetus was in good health when in reality there were serious abnormalities. The parents were never given all the information and therefore did not have the opportunity to decide to have a termination. Their child now needs millions of dollars in care and the mother has had to quit her job to stay home.
Find an Iowa Cerebral Palsy Lawyer
It may be time to find a lawyer to guide your next steps and to help your child. You need a lawyer who specifically works on these kinds of cases, so start your search by asking the parents in your disability community. Those who have been through this before probably have great recommendations. Local advocacy and rights groups may also be able to point you toward a good lawyer. The state bar association can also help you search for a lawyer with the right expertise.
If your family has a child diagnosed with cerebral palsy, taking legal action might not be the first thing on your mind. But a lawsuit can be so important in getting justice for the harm caused to your child and for recovering damages to provide him or her with good care for life. Let an Iowa cerebral palsy lawyer help your family settle this legal matter so you can move on with your lives.