Medical Negligence Claims

Cerebral Palsy Claims

If your child has cerebral palsy as a result of negligent treatment by doctors or midwives, we understand the impact this will have on your life. Our medical negligence solicitors know about the complex needs that a child with cerebral palsy will have, for example:

  • Difficulties with movement
  • Hearing and speech problems
  • Learning difficulties

We’re proud of our individual approach to cerebral palsy claims, making sure the compensation takes your child’s unique needs into account. We have decades of experience representing people with cerebral palsy and have secured many significant lifetime rehabilitation packages for our clients.

We’ll investigate your claim with the help of independent medical experts, working out what mistakes were made and how they could have been avoided. For example, medical negligence in cerebral palsy cases often involves a failure to:

  • Deliver the baby early enough or by caesarean
  • Monitor the baby’s heartbeat
  • Respond to the umbilical cord being wrapped around the baby’s neck

Our dedicated client liaison managers will guide you through the claims process, putting you in touch with relevant charity, healthcare and rehabilitation contacts.

Importantly, we’re one of a select group of law firms who can accept legal aid for cerebral palsy claims. This means you’ll receive full funding for our investigation into your case, and subsequent legal representation. If legal aid isn’t available, we may be able to support you on a No Win No Fee basis, with no financial risk to you.*

If you’ve been affected by cerebral palsy as a result of medical negligence, please contact us for more information on how we could help you make a claim.


Legal aid available for some cases*
Links with support groups and charities
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Cerebral Palsy Claims - More Information
    • What Will Happen When I Make A Claim?
    • After you’ve contacted us, we’ll set up a free initial consultation to discuss your case and whether you have a legal claim on behalf of your child. We’ll discuss what funding options are available to you to pay for your claim, including No Win No Fee agreements*.

      We’ll then get in touch with those responsible for your child’s negligent treatment at an early stage to see if they accept the blame for your injuries. If they accept responsibility, we’ll try to secure interim compensation payments which can fund private medical care and ongoing expenses, before your claim fully settles. Any interim payments will be taken out of your final compensation award.

      Our experts will look into your case in detail, gathering evidence from independent medical professionals. These experts evaluate what care your child should have received and can determine any future implications to your health. They’ll also advise us on the care you’ll need in the future.

      We’ll always try and negotiate claims out of court, keeping the claim process as short as we can. However, if your opponent doesn’t accept responsibility or doesn’t agree with the amount of compensation we feel you need, we’ll start court proceedings.

      Even when trial dates have been set, claims are still often settled before reaching court. If your claim does need to go to court, we’ll be there to help you every step of the way, talking you through what will happen so you feel as comfortable as possible.

    • What Are The Time Limits For Making A Claim?
    • In most medical negligence cases, you have three years to make a compensation claim, starting from the date the injury happened (or the date you first became aware that the injury was a result of negligence). For children, this three year period begins on their 18th birthday, so you have until they’re 21 to make a claim.

      However, there’s no time limit for people with profound mental difficulties (this applies to many cerebral palsy cases, for example). So, even if you didn’t make a claim for a loved one with cerebral palsy within the usual time limits, you can still begin a claim with our solicitors later on.

      It’s important to contact us as soon as possible so that we can begin to investigate your claim. If you have questions or concerns about the time limits, please call us for free initial advice on 0800 121 6567.

    • Do You Handle Legal Aid Cases?
    • Yes, we can accept legal aid for clinical negligence claims involving serious neurological birth injuries like cerebral palsy that happened within eight weeks of the child’s birth.

      We’re one of a select group of law firms that can take on legal aid cases in medical negligence. To qualify for legal aid, there is a means test (based on any savings the baby has) and a merit test that simply requires that there’s enough reason for us to investigate the case.

      If your claim qualifies, then you’ll receive funding for our initial investigation and you won’t have to pay anything yourself. After that, you’ll receive legal aid funding for full representation if we take your case on.

      Our specialist lawyers will talk you through the different funding options available to you.

    • Can I Make A Claim On A No Win No Fee Basis?
    • Many of our cases are funded with a No Win No Fee agreement. This means that there’s no financial risk* to you when making a compensation claim.

      At the start of your case we’ll discuss funding options with you, advising you which we think is most suitable. If you have legal expenses insurance (LEI) or are covered by a trade union policy, these may be best for you. Legal expenses insurance is included in many household insurance policies, so it’s always worth checking whether you’re already covered.

      If we think you’re best supported by a No Win No Fee agreement, we’ll explain the process clearly. This involves setting up an insurance policy that will protect you, at no cost to you. You’ll only have to pay anything when your claim is successful – your opponent will pay most of our fees.

      Please visit our No Win No Fee page for more information on how it works.

    • How Our Other Teams Can Help
    • Because we’re a full-service law firm, we also have a number of other in-house teams with specialist knowledge in areas such as rehabilitation, Wills and asset management.

      Rehabilitation

      We see rehabilitation as key and will make sure that you can access the care and support services your child needs to lead the best life possible. Our client liaison managers can provide support and information to you and your family, helping you with many of the “non-legal” problems you may face such as benefit eligibility and healthcare. We helped secure a vital compensation package for Edward, amounting to £10.2m over his lifetime.

      Public Law

      Our Public Law department can offer advice on Part 3 of the Children and Families Act 2014. The Act made sweeping reforms to child welfare legislation, affecting young people with special education needs under the age of 25. It replaced statements of special educational needs and learning difficulty assessments with a combined Education, Health and Care Plan (EHC plan).

      We can advise you on:

      • The new assessment process
      • EHC plans
      • Duties of schools
      • Challenging decisions

      Please follow this link for more information, along with factsheets and template letters.

      Wills

      We have specialist Wills solicitors who can help with any issues surrounding Wills and who can also assist if you’re claiming on behalf of a loved one who has unfortunately passed away.

      Asset Management

      Our Asset Management team can provide advice on how your compensation could be best invested so that it’s there for the rest of your child’s life. We also have Court of Protection lawyers who can set up a personal injury trust, which protects your compensation and ensures that you remain eligible for any benefits you’re entitled to.

      Court of Protection

      We have the largest Court of Protection department in the UK, which helps people manage their affairs when they don’t have the mental capacity to do it themselves. This means we can help you safeguard your child’s financial future.

    • Meet The Team
    • Our medical negligence solicitors have decades of experience in cerebral palsy cases and are nationally renowned for their expertise. With offices up and down the country, we’re recognised by independent legal guides as one of the UK’s best medical negligence departments.

      For some people getting an apology and explanation for what’s happened is just as important as a compensation award. We campaign for systems to be put in place that ensure the same thing doesn’t happen to somebody else.

      View our experts

It’s not an easy situation to deal with, but there is assistance out there which has a massive positive impact on not just Mac’s life but ours too – and we wanted to share that with others."

Valerie, client's mum
Life with Mac quote image

Frequently Asked Questions

What Constitutes Negligence?

In most cases, cerebral palsy happens before birth due to abnormal brain development. However, around 10% of children with cerebral palsy develop the disorder as a result of damage to their brain during or after birth. If you think that this happened to you, we could help you claim compensation.

Our specialist birth injury solicitors will investigate what happened during birth and, if we find evidence of incompetent care, we’ll seek answers from the organisation responsible for your treatment.

Some examples of medical negligence include a failure to:

  • Act on signs of foetal distress
  • Deliver the baby by caesarean
  • Deliver the baby early enough
  • Monitor the baby’s heartbeat correctly
  • Respond properly to the umbilical cord being wrapped around the baby’s neck (a prolapsed umbilical cord)
  • Test for birth complications

After the baby has been born, it’s vital that they’re monitored for conditions and infections that might lead to cerebral palsy. We’ve helped families who suffered after doctors failed to diagnose or monitor:

  • Meningitis
  • Hypoglycaemia
  • Jaundice (kernicterus)
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What Can Compensation Pay For?

We understand that cerebral palsy is a complex condition that affects everyone differently. That’s why we’ll take the time to investigate your child’s case as thoroughly as possible, working out their individual needs and how best these can be taken care of by compensation.

Compensation could pay for a range of therapies to aid your child’s rehabilitation, including:

  • Physiotherapy
  • Speech and language therapy
  • Occupational therapy

We’ve witnessed first-hand the difference that these kinds of therapy can make, enabling our clients to improve their independence and quality of life greatly.

Other areas in which compensation can help include:

  • House adaptations (Great Adaptations shows the kinds of changes that our clients make)
  • Specialist equipment
  • Surgical procedures (e.g. selective dorsal rhizotomy, an operation to reduce muscle stiffness)
  • Dedicated assistance at school

Importantly, we’ll pursue interim payments that can help you access specialist care and support even before your claim has finished.

You’ll work with our client liaison managers who will provide support and specialist advice while your case is being investigated. We can advise on specialist care, treatment and equipment that will help your child, both now and in the future.

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How Much Compensation Will I Receive?

Cerebral palsy compensation packages need to take the sufferer’s lifetime needs into account, which means claims often settle for millions of pounds.

Many of our clients receive a large initial lump sum that could be put towards a more suitable house, then periodical payments for the rest of their life. The annual payments are calculated to cover the costs of care and any specialist equipment/treatment that might be needed.

We know that the true extent of a child’s cerebral palsy won’t always become clear until they’re older, and we’ll make sure that this is taken into account by the compensation. We also recognise that in some cases cerebral palsy worsens over time – your compensation package will allow for this possibility.

You’ll receive expert advice about protecting your funds from our Court of Protection team, the largest in the country. Similarly, our IM Asset Management department offers specialist guidance on making the most of your compensation for the future.

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Awards & Recognition

We're always proud to be recognised for the work we do for our clients and have been named as a leading firm in the latest legal guides - which provide information and recommendations about lawyers and law firms in the UK.

"They are forensic and analytical as well as campaigning and careful. All of the lawyers work tirelessly for the smaller cases as well as the bigger cases."
"One of the best’ and ‘go-to firm’ Irwin Mitchell covers the full range of work, and specialises in complex, unique cases."
We're delighted to have been named Claimant Solicitor of the Year in the 2016 Post Magazine Rehabilitation First Awards, an award we've won on seven previous occasions.

What Our Clients Say

We truly value and appreciate the feedback we receive from our clients, as we look to improve the services we offer on an ongoing basis.

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Proudly supporting vital charity work.

We’re proud of our links with organisations like disability charity Scope and children’s charity Brainwave.

To mark World Cerebral Palsy Day 2015, we teamed up with Brainwave to create Living With Cerebral Palsy, a project to showcase the inspiring stories of families who have been affected by the condition.

Our Offices

Our offices are located in major cities throughout the UK and have excellent transport links.

Start Your Claim Today

To begin your claim for compensation, or ask any questions regarding personal injury claims, contact us today for a free consultation.

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