Atlanta Brachial Plexus Injury Lawyers
Shoulder dystocia during birth case cause catastrophic brachial plexus injuries, costing a child permanent loss of a functioning arm. You’ll need the right attorney. You’ve come to the right place.
The brachial plexus refers to the nerves running between the spine and shoulders, which control the movement of muscles in the shoulders, hands, and arms. Damage to the brachial plexus can occur when a physician fails to provide adequate obstetrical care. When a brachial plexus injury occurs, the consequences are often devastating.
Like all medical negligence cases, those involving brachial plexus injuries are complex and replete with opportunities for negligent doctors to avoid taking responsibility for the harm caused. What does that mean for you? Well, it means you’ll want a medical malpractice specialist, not just a general personal injury attorney who occasionally dabbles in medical cases. And you’ll want a firm like ours, with a track record of winning brachial plexus injury cases.
We know how to diligently discover the important facts, retain world-class expert witnesses, and methodically prepare brachial plexus injury cases for trial in a way that maximizes the opportunity for a verdict that provides justice for our client.
What causes brachial plexus injuries?
Brachial plexus injuries during childbirth typically occur for one of three reasons:
- the infant’s head and neck are pulled toward the side as the shoulder’s drop through the mother’s pelvis;
- a doctor or midwife has pulled on the infant’s head during a head-first delivery; and
- pressure on the infant’s arms during a breech (feet-first) delivery.
Are there different types of brachial plexus injuries?
Yes, all brachial plexus injuries aren’t the same. They can generally be categorized as follows:
- injuries that affect only the upper arm;
- injuries that affect the upper and lower arm, known as Erb’s palsy, which can involve avulsion (when the brachial plexus nerves are torn from the spine), rupture (when the brachial plexus nerves are torn, but not where they attach to the spine), neuroma (when the brachial plexus nerves have attempted to heal, but scar tissue has grown around the injury placing pressure on the injured nerve), and neuropraxia (when nerve conduction has been blocked without any anatomical interruption); and
- Klumpke’s palsy, also known as Dejerine-Klumpke palsy, which affects the infant’s forearm and hand, often causing paralysis of the forearm, wrist, hand and fingers. In some cases, other symptoms may accompany the impaired arm/hand functions, including eyelid drooping and pupil dilation in one eye. Unlike Erb’s palsy, Klumpke’s palsy is somewhat rare, although the two conditions do share a common cause: delivery complications arising from shoulder dystocia. However, with Klumpke’s palsy, the damage is typically permanent. Injuries associated with Klumpke’s palsy may not respond as favorably to physical therapy and motion exercises as other brachial plexus injuries, and surgery may only be an option in certain cases. Trained medical professionals understand the risk factors for shoulder dystocia, and an experienced obstetrician can typically prevent most circumstances in which brachial plexus injuries occur.
What are the risk factors for a brachial plexus injury?
When any of the following factors are present at childbirth, the delivering physician and nurses should be alert for the potential of a brachial plexus injury and should take all precaution so to avoid such an injury.
- difficulty delivering the infant’s head after the shoulder has come out (shoulder dystocia);
- larger than average infants;
- breech delivery;
- maternal diabetes;
- short maternal stature; and
- a contracted or flat pelvis.
What are the symptoms of a brachial plexus injury?
Most brachial plexus birth injuries are readily apparent after delivery and are diagnosed in the hospital. However, if you’ve been discharged home with your infant and notice any of the following symptoms, you should consult your pediatrician promptly.
- the infant does not move the upper or lower arm or hand;
- the infant’s grip is decreased; and
- the infant’s arm is bent at the elbow and held close to the body.
What is the statute of limitation for brachial plexus injuries?
Generally, the statute of limitation for medical malpractice in Georgia is two years from the date of the negligent care. For children, the statute of limitation is typically tolled (or paused) until the child’s 5th birthday, which means that the statute runs (or expires) on the child’s 7th birthday.
However, certain circumstances can extend the statute of limitation (for example, when a doctor conceals negligent care that’s later discovered). Other scenarios can involve shorter time periods within which a case must be pursued (for example, when the negligent provider is employed by a government entity, which can trigger claim notification deadlines as short as six months from the date of the negligent care). Further, some specific types of malpractice, such as when a foreign object is left inside a patient after a surgery, have unique statutes of limitation (for foreign objects, it’s one year from the date the object is discovered).
And to make matters more confusing, medical malpractice cases can be subject to a five-year statute of repose. This is intended to be a “final deadline,” beyond which a medical malpractice claim cannot be filed for any reason. But it doesn’t always work that way; their are some exceptions.
So, the best answer: it depends. And our best guidance: don’t try to determine the statute of limitation on your own; contact us and we’ll be more than happy to collect and analyze the facts needed to provide you with the correct answer.
Read what one brachial plexus injury client has to say.
“My daughter’s arm was severely injured during birth. She’ll never be able to use it. Had we not found Jess Davis and Chad Adams, we’d never have gotten justice for her. They got the doctor to admit that what he’d done was wrong, and his insurance company compensated our daughter for her injury.”
T.J. of East Point, GA
Our Atlanta medical malpractice lawyers are brachial plexus injury experts.
Tens of millions of dollars in verdicts and settlements validate our commitment to doing medical malpractice litigation—and doing it better than any other law firm. We are immersed in medical negligence litigation every day, quickly spotting trends as they develop, pioneering new legal strategies and tactics to combat the ever-changing insurance defense industry, and constantly discussing our clients’ cases with leading medical experts around the country. We are always honing our skills as brachial plexus injury attorneys, which is why nobody does it better.
Our reputation for handling brachial plexus injury cases adds value to your case.
Birth injury defense lawyers know us. Insurance claims adjusters know us. In fact, most all of the major players in the insurance defense industry in Georgia know who we are, and what we’re capable of doing in a courtroom. They know about our results, because they have seen us in action. And they know that when we pursue a brachial plexus injury case, we will never settle for anything less than fair treatment for our client in the form of full financial compensation. Choosing Davis Adams to handle a brachial plexus injury case in Georgia means leveraging our years of experience, and our reputation for excellence, to help maximize your recovery.
Having an experienced brachial plexus injury lawyer matters.
Jess Davis and Chad Adams cut their teeth at litigators handling the most complex, high-stakes medical malpractice cases, typically regarded as among the most complicated of all personal injury matters. Racking up successful results for their clients in cases other medical malpractice lawyers were turning down, they quickly became the “go-to” attorneys to whom other Georgia lawyers refer brachial plexus and other medical negligence cases.
How does this tangibly help our clients? We have the unique ability to quickly read and digest volumes of obstetric records, to pick up the telephone and speak confidently to our clients’ treating physicians about their diagnoses and prognoses, and to instantly reach the top brachial plexus experts at the best hospitals and universities in the world (even at night and on weekends) to consult on our clients’ cases. This rare expertise and access is a game changer for brachial plexus injury clients, and sets us apart from personal injury firms that merely dabble in medical negligence cases, but primarily handle auto accidents.
We handle brachial plexus injury cases throughout Georgia.
Davis Adams is headquartered in metro Atlanta, but our reach is statewide. We routinely represent brachial plexus injury victims in all parts of Georgia, including Macon, Savannah, Columbus, and Albany. Indeed, our geographic reach is evidenced by the fact that our firm’s largest settlement ($17,000,000) came in Fulton County, while our largest verdict ($10,000,000) came in rural Jefferson County. So, wherever you reside in Georgia, selecting the best brachial plexus injury lawyer is more important than simply hiring the closest lawyer. You have only one opportunity to obtain justice for your child, and we are always honored when that chance it entrusted to us, wherever you happen to be located.
How much is my brachial plexus injury case worth?
Most people who contact our firm do so reluctantly. They aren’t excited about the possibility of having to sue an obstetrician or nurse for malpractice, and they understand that money won’t solve all of their (or their injured child’s) problems. But financial compensation is the only remedy available through the civil justice system; it’s the only form of justice the law allows under these circumstances. We can only provide our clients with guidance as to the fair value of their cases after the case has been fully investigated. The factors we will consider include:
Economic damages, including:
- past medical bills;
- future/projected medical expenses, including life-care plans;
- past lost income; and
- future lost income.
Non-economic damages, including:
- physical pain and suffering;
- mental or emotional pain and suffering;
- loss of consortium (companionship); and
- the full value of a life (in wrongful death cases).
Often brachial plexus injury cases are settled at mediation, which allows our clients to avoid the risk and emotional toll associated with trial, and to end their case with certainty. Other times, mediation is unsuccessful, and we proceed to trial and ask a jury to determine our client’s compensation. A significant percentage of our $75 million in recovered funds for our clients is the result of trial verdicts, meaning that the attorneys hired to defend negligent doctors and nurses know we are fully prepared to meet them in a courtroom if the case cannot otherwise be resolved to our clients’ satisfaction.
Fewer cases, more personal attention, better results.
Davis Adams declines to accept the vast majority of cases presented to our firm. The fit has to be just right: the right client with the right type of case, where we feel like our firm can have the maximum positive impact. And while it may seem counterintuitive to turn down revenue-generating business, we are committed to doing outstanding, hands-on work for a limited number of catastrophically injured clients instead of employing a team of less experienced associate attorneys to churn through a high-volume workload.
We simply refuse to become one of those law firms at which the experienced trial lawyers only get involved in the later stages of the case, if at all. From day one, our clients have the collective time, attention, energy, and experience of the seasoned brachial plexus injury attorneys who will be handling their case at trial, which translates to better representation, and better financial recoveries.
Other lawyers often ask, “Wouldn’t it just be easier to hire some young associate attorneys to handle the unimportant parts of your cases?” That question represents a fundamental misunderstanding of how medical malpractice cases are won or lost, and emphasizes the importance of hiring an experienced brachial plexus injury attorney. There are no unimportant tasks in brachial plexus injury cases; victory is always in the details and is never achieved at the maximum level without bringing to bear the full weight of our firm’s substantial experience, dogged determination and blatant refusal to settle for less than our clients deserve.
We do not accept any payment for our work on your brachial plexus injury case unless you win.
Davis Adams only handles brachial plexus injury cases on a contingency basis, which means that if we do not recover money for our clients, we refuse to accept payment for our services, or even reimbursement for the money we’ve spent. Additionally, our contingency fee, while reflective of our firm’s quality and success, is nonetheless lower than the fee charged by some firms. We believe, and have proven, that building a financially successful law firm and keeping our fees and expenses to a minimum are not mutually exclusive concepts.