If you’re reading up on cerebral palsy lawsuits because you’re considering filing one yourself, you may have heard the term res ipsa loquitur. This is a legal term that applies in some cases of negligence. It also specifically applies to a great many claims filed over medical negligence. It’s not easy to understand, and, like everything involving the law, some specifics may be different in some locations than others.
Res ipsa loquitur is a Latin term meaning “the thing itself speaks.” Essentially, it means that the results of medical negligence provide adequate evidence that medical negligence was, in fact, a factor in somebody coming to harm.
Normally, establishing medical negligence requires that the attorney establishes that there was a doctor-patient relationship, that the doctor somehow violated that doctor-patient relationship and that violating that doctor-patient relationship was the cause of the injury, and that the person was harmed in a way that can be recognized by the law. In cases involving res ipsa loquitur, the attorney may only need to prove that the breach of duty was the cause of the injury and that the person was harmed.
This gets very technical, but attorneys sometimes can use this to prove that medical negligence led their client to come to harm. In cases involving cerebral palsy, for instance, they may be able to establish that the child would’ve never had cerebral palsy if it wasn’t for the negligence of the doctor and establish that the child, indeed, does suffer a brain injury and that may be enough to get the jury to agree that the child deserves compensation.
One of the reasons that you want to talk to a cerebral palsy law firm about a lawsuit, even if you’re not decided that you’re going to pursue it yet, is because the law is full of complex concepts such as res ipsa loquitur. While most people feel they have a pretty good understanding of the law, the average person’s understanding of the law is comparable to what people understand about psychology from pop psychology. The law is full of tricky language and complicated concepts and even though this may dissuade some people from pursuing a lawsuit, realize that many of those concepts work in your favor.
The key element in getting the compensation your child deserves is making sure you have an attorney who is well-versed in the law and who understands how it applies to asserting your rights in all of its complexity.