If my daughter has been diagnosed with cerebral palsy, how do I calculate the value of a compensation claim for brain damage at birth?
The calculation of the value of a compensation claim for brain damage at birth is a delicate one. The major factor taken into account will be the level of disability your daughter has suffered, but there are many more considerations to bear in mind when assessing how much compensation for cerebral palsy at birth your daughter may be entitled to.
Issues such as your own loss of amenity and emotional trauma will have to be considered alongside the physical injuries that your daughter has suffered, as well as the expenses you may have already incurred and those you are likely to experience in the future.
Two of the most significant elements of a claim for brain damage at birth are how much it will cost for the future provision of care and – if your daughter´s brain injuries are such that she will never be able to work – a lifetime of lost income. These two elements alone could amount to millions of Euros and have to be accurately calculated to ensure your daughter receives adequate financial support throughout her life.
However, prior to calculating how much compensation for cerebral palsy at birth to claim for, it has to be established that your daughter´s injury was attributable to medical negligence. This in itself will be a complicated process and will require an investigation into how your daughter was deprived of oxygen in the womb or during her delivery.
You will need to discuss with a solicitor the circumstances of your daughter´s cerebral palsy injury, the level of care you received both before and during the delivery of your child and the symptoms displayed by your daughter after she was born. Your solicitor will engage the services of independent medical experts to assess the claim for brain damage at birth and determine whether your daughter (as it is she who has sustained the injury) has a justifiable claim for cerebral palsy injury compensation.
If negligence is established, your solicitor will then explain to you the procedures for completing the claim for cerebral palsy injury compensation (for example, getting authorisation to act as a “next friend” on your daughter´s behalf) and start the assessment of how much compensation for cerebral palsy at birth you should be able to claim.
Although you have until your daughter´s eighteenth birthday to make a claim for brain damage at birth (or longer, if your daughter does not have the cognitive ability at the time to represent herself), you should not delay in speaking with an experienced medical negligence solicitor.
The more recent the event which led to your daughter sustaining brain injuries at birth, the more likely that your claim for cerebral palsy injury compensation will be settled quickly and with the least possible complications.
Depending on the level of your daughter´s injury and your own personal situation, it may also be advisable to discuss the prospect of interim payments ahead of a periodic compensation payment system being introduced in Ireland. If a structured system of compensation for cerebral palsy at birth is introduced by the time your daughter´s claim for brain damage at birth is ready to be settled, this may change the dynamics of how the value of the claim is calculated.