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Birth Injury Claims

Inadequate midwifery and/or obstetric care, prior to or during labour and delivery, may provide grounds for a medical negligence claim*. There are common complications which can arise during pregnancy, labour and in the post-natal period which, if not appropriately recognised and treated, may result in injuries which have devastating consequences for your child.

Disorders may arise during pregnancy such as gestational diabetes, pre-eclampsia or intrauterine growth restriction which if not recognised and treated may cause serious damage to the unborn child and his/her mother. Complications that can arise during labour which may require appropriate midwifery and/or obstetric intervention in order to prevent injury include:

  • Over-stimulation of the uterus arising from inappropriate or excessive use of oxytocin/syntocinon, to induce or to augment labour;
  • Foetal bradycardia (low foetal heart rate causing foetal hypoxia);
  • Nuchal cord compression;
  • Mal-presentation of the foetus;
  • Cephalopelvic disproportion.

When midwifery or obstetric intervention is required, negligence may arise from an excessive delay in carrying out the required procedures or in the manner in which the intervention is performed.

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Where we can help

Seek Advice

If you have experienced complications during your pregnancy or labour which resulted in injuries to yourself or your child, it is important to seek advice in relation to whether there may be grounds to bring a legal claim in respect of the adequacy of the care and treatment which was provided. Such a claim may allow you to fund medical and other expenses which are required to address the consequences of the injuries sustained and to provide appropriate compensation for the pain, suffering and loss of amenities which have been experienced to date and which may continue into the future.

Our Legal Expertise

Ivor Fitzpatrick & Company Solicitors has an experienced and expert team of medical negligence lawyers.

Our team is headed by Susan Stapleton and David Harris who have each practiced in medical negligence and healthcare law for over 25 years.

Our Experience

The medical negligence team at Ivor Fitzpatrick & Company have considerable experience in and have successfully brought to trial or settled many birth injury claims where serious injuries have been caused during the management of labour and the delivery including:

  • Cerebral Palsy;
  • Other brain injuries;
  • Skull fractures, and; 
  • Nerve injury to a shoulder (Erbs Palsy).

The types of negligence claims which we have successfully brought on behalf of our clients have included:

  • Failures to adequately monitor foetal heart rate and/or failing to identify and act upon abnormalities in the foetal heart rate;
  • Inappropriately delaying the performance of an instrumental delivery (forceps or a vacuum extraction); 
  • Using inappropriate techniques during an assisted or instrumental delivery, and 
  • Inappropriately delaying the carrying of an emergency caesarean section;


We understand that the consequences of a traumatic labour and birth resulting in an injured child are emotionally devastating and we will endeavour to do all that we possibly can to ensure that the necessary investigations are carried out as sensitively and as quickly as is reasonably practicable whilst ensuring that the full information and evidence of the relevant events surrounding the birth are thoroughly examined. In the event there is reasonable evidence of medical negligence which has caused any or all of the injuries which may affect your child, we will vigorously pursue a claim for proper compensation so that your child’s needs are adequately met.

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