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Filing a cerebral palsy lawsuit in Michigan can be a complex and lengthy process. Whether it is a case of medical malpractice or a fight for your child’s rights, understanding state laws is important. To get through the process with confidence, choose an experienced Michigan cerebral palsy lawyer who specializes in handling cases like yours.
Start with a Great Michigan Cerebral Palsy Lawyer
A cerebral palsy lawyer is an expert who specializes in birth injury and medical malpractice cases. There are several reasons to find an experienced attorney who handles these types the cases, including the following:
- The laws regarding medical malpractice and disability rights cases vary by state and can be confusing to understand without legal expertise.
- Michigan laws regarding malpractice cases require several steps before you can file.
- A lawyer can help you access the right medical, and expert witnesses needed to make your case.
- Your lawyer is better equipped to investigate and prove malpractice or discrimination.
Types of Lawsuits You Can File in Michigan for Cerebral Palsy
If your child has a cerebral palsy and it was caused by medical negligence, you may want to file a medical malpractice lawsuit against the responsible party.
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Later, as your child gets older, disability rights or discrimination cases may be necessary to help you fight for your child’s right to access and opportunities.
A medical malpractice lawsuit is a case against a medical professional or organization that alleges liability for your child’s disability.
The laws in Michigan that govern these cases include time limits on when you can file, expert witness qualifications, damages caps, and other limitations.
You may need to file a complaint or a discrimination lawsuit against an organization or individual if you believe your child’s rights are being denied.
Typically, discrimination tends to happen while a disabled child is at school. It could also happen when a government agency denies benefits rightfully owed.
In Michigan, the Department of Civil Rights handles discrimination complaints , but there are also federal laws that may be relevant in your child’s situation.
How to File a Malpractice Case in Michigan
1. File within the statute of limitations
First, it’s essential to understand the statute of limitations. Michigan law that states you have two years from when the negligence occurred to file the lawsuit. 
Or, you have six months from when you realized negligence caused your child’s condition, as long as it is not more than six years from when it occurred.
2. Submit a Complaint
According to Michigan law, your first step in filing a lawsuit is to submit a notice of intent. A notice of intent is a document that notifies the defendant about the lawsuit and explains what happened and how your child was harmed.
3. The Lawsuit with an affidavit of merit
Michigan law changed in 1993 to require that plaintiffs in medical malpractice cases submit an affidavit of merit when filing a malpractice lawsuit. 
This document must be signed by a medical expert with experience in the same field as the defendants being sued. The affidavit states that this expert believes the case has merit.
4. Following through with the Lawsuit
With the lawsuit filed and after the defendants have replied, your lawyer will continue investigating your case. They will try to negotiate a settlement in your favor with the defendants.
If a settlement cannot be reached, your case will go to trial. Your lawyer will present evidence and experts, and a jury will decide if medical malpractice occurred, and if so, what you are owed.
Although there is no limit on how much a jury may award you for economic damages, like medical expenses, Michigan does cap non-economic damages in malpractice cases.
The deadline for 2019 is $465,900 or $832,000 in some cases of permanent disability, which may apply to your child.
How to File a Disability Rights or Discrimination Case in Michigan
The process for handling claims of discrimination or a violation of disabled rights for your child is a little different.
Contact the Michigan Department of Civil Rights
The first step in filing a complaint is to contact the MDCR. The staff can answer questions for you and provide more information about what to do next.
File a Complaint
Next, file a complaint with the MDCR within 180 days of the incident in question. The organization files an official complaint on your behalf. The organization or persona named in your claim will get a copy and a chance to investigate the incident.
The job of the MDCR is to help you resolve the issue. This may include leading discussion between you and the respondent of your complaint. If you can agree to a settlement, the case is closed, but if not, the MDCR will investigate and file an official report.
File a Lawsuit if Necessary
If you don’t feel as if your child’s complaint has been resolved satisfactorily, you may choose to file a lawsuit.
A lawyer experienced in disability rights can help you determine if you have a case, will know which state or federal laws apply, and can get the lawsuit started against the appropriate people or organizations.
The Michigan cerebral palsy lawsuit filing process follows specific steps, but these can be confusing if you are not a lawyer. To make sure you get through the process with the best possible outcome for your child, hire the right lawyer.
A Michigan cerebral palsy lawyer has the expertise and the relevant experience to help you make and prove your case.
- Michigan Department of Civil Rights. (n.d.). SOM - State of Michigan.
Retrieved from: https://www.michigan.gov/mdcr/
- Medical liability/Malpractice statutes of limitation. (2014, March 20). Legislative News, Studies and Analysis | National Conference of State Legislatures.
Retrieved from: https://www.ncsl.org/research/financial-services-and-commerce/medical-liability-malpractice-statutes-of-limitation.aspx
- Medical liability/Malpractice merit affidavits and expert witnesses. (2014, June 24). Legislative News, Studies and Analysis | National Conference of State Legislatures.
Retrieved from: https://www.ncsl.org/research/financial-services-and-commerce/medical-liability-malpractice-merit-affidavits-and-expert-witnesses.aspx