Broken Bones During Birth – Can You Claim Compensation?

By Emily Sirko. Last Updated 27th April 2023. If you are considering making a medical negligence claim for a broken bone birth injury, you may be wondering how much compensation you could receive. From broken arms to a broken pelvis, broken bones during labour can affect you and your child.

Broken Bone Birth Injury

Broken Bone Birth Injury Medical Negligence Claims Guide

In this guide, we will discuss how much compensation you could potentially receive if your medical negligence claim were to succeed. Following this, we will detail the criteria in place for making a medical negligence claim and provide guidance on when you could start a claim.

Our advisors are here to help if you would like to learn more about the birth injury claims process. They can offer you a free consultation, in which they can evaluate your claim and provide free legal advice. To get started:

Choose A Section

  1. Broken Bone Birth Injury Compensation Payouts
  2. Can I Claim Compensation For Broken Bones During Childbirth?
  3. Providing Proof Of A Broken Bone Birth Injury
  4. Examples Of Broken Bone Injuries To Mothers And Babies
  5. Start A No Win No Fee Birth Injury Claim
  6. Related Clinical Negligence Claim Guides

Broken Bone Birth Injury Compensation Payouts 

If you make a successful claim for a broken bone birth injury, you could receive up to two heads of compensation. The first head is general damages. This covers the unnecessary harm you or your child experienced due to medical negligence. For example, if the negligence of a doctor caused you to suffer a broken pelvis during birth that you otherwise would not have experienced, this could be compensated by general damages.

When calculating general damages amounts, solicitors and other legal professionals often refer to the Judicial College Guidelines (JCG). The JCG provides a list of injuries and illnesses with varying severities and offers guideline compensation brackets for each of them. Below, you can find some examples of injuries that could occur during birth with their corresponding JCG bracket. However, please note that these figures are only guidelines and are not guarantees of what you could receive.

Injury Type Compensation Bracket Notes
Severe Pelvis Injuries (a) £78,400 to £130,930 Extensive pelvis fractures, leaving substantial levels of residual disability.
Other Arm Injuries (d) £6,610 to £19,200 Simple forearm fractures.
Less Serious Leg Injuries (c) (ii) £9,110 to £14,080 Simple femur fractures that cause no damage to the arterial surfaces.
Less Serious Leg Injuries (c) (iii) Up to £11,840 Simple fibula and tibia fractures, or similar soft tissue injuries.
Shoulder Injuries (e) £5,150 to £12,240 Fractures of the clavicle.
Shoulder Injuries (a) £19,200 to £48,030 Involving damage to the brachial plexus that results in significant disability
Shoulder Injuries (b) £12,770 to £19,200 Fractured humerus leading to restricted shoulder movement.

Types Of Special Damages

You may also be able to claim for special damages. This is the head of compensation that addresses the financial losses brought on by medical negligence. Under this heading, you may be able to claim back the cost of:

  • Therapy or counselling
  • Medical bills
  • Prescription medications
  • Travel to and from appointments
  • Loss of earnings

These are just a few of the costs that you may be able to claim back under special damages. It’s essential to provide evidence to support a claim for special damages, so it can be helpful to save any receipts, invoices, or bills that are relevant.

To learn more about claiming compensation for medical negligence, get in touch with our advisors. Alternatively, read on to find out if you could be eligible for broken bone birth injury compensation.

Can I Claim Compensation For Broken Bones During Childbirth?

If you or your child suffered a broken bone during childbirth, then you may be able to claim compensation. However, in order to do so, your case must meet certain criteria:

  • A medical professional owed you a duty of care
  • They failed to fulfil this duty
  • This failure caused you unnecessary harm

Every medical professional owes a duty of care to their patients. In order to properly fulfil this duty, they have to ensure that the treatment you receive meets the correct standard of care.

Some harm is necessary, and cannot be claimed for. For example, if the only way to safely deliver your baby is to allow their shoulder to be broken or dislocated, this would be necessary harm. You would not be able to claim for this, as no negligence was involved in the injury.

If you endure unavoidable harm due to medical negligence, then you could claim for your injuries. If your child suffers a broken bone birth injury caused by negligence, you can bring a claim as a litigation friend on their behalf.

How To Make A Birth Injury Claim On Behalf Of Your Child

You could be eligible to make a birth injury claim on behalf of your child for injuries they suffered during the birthing process. However, you will need to prove that medical negligence occurred.

If, for example, your child suffers a broken bone during birth, this could give rise to a medical negligence claim if the injury was caused by a medical professional breaching their duty of care. For instance, if a doctor assisting with the birth is negligent in their use of forceps and breaks the arm of the baby.

In some instances, your child may have suffered necessary harm. For example, as previously outlined in the section above, this can be if the shoulder or arm of the baby needs to be broken or dislocated in order for them to be safely delivered. In this instance, you might not be able to make a medical negligence claim on behalf of your child.

For further information on birth injury compensation claims, you can contact our advisors. They could also help answer any questions you may have.

Time Limits In Medical Negligence Claims 

You may be wondering how long a medical negligence claim can take. Since every claim is unique, we can’t provide an average amount of time. However, there are time limits involved that dictate when you can start your claim. Generally, you will have three years to start a medical negligence claim, as set out by the Limitation Act 1980.

There are some exceptions to this rule. For example, the time limit is suspended for minors under the age of eighteen. It then reinstates on their eighteenth birthday and ends on their twenty-first. A litigation friend can claim on their behalf at any time during this period.

If you want to learn more about these exceptions, contact our team of advisors today.

Providing Proof Of A Broken Bone Birth Injury 

An important part of making a broken bone birth injury is providing evidence that you or your child’s injuries were caused by medical negligence. Evidence can be collected alone, or with the help of a solicitor. Some examples can include:

  • Video footage: Some people film the labour process as a keepsake. This video can also be used as evidence to help support your case.
  • Hospital records: Hospital records, prescriptions, and other documents.
  • Witness contact details: The contact details of anyone who witnessed the birth, such as a partner, family member or friend, can be used to ensure their statement is taken at a later date.

These are only a few examples of how evidence can help prove that medical negligence caused a broken bone birth injury. Contact our team today to find out how a solicitor from our panel could help you collect evidence.

Examples Of Broken Bone Injuries To Mothers And Babies 

During labour, broken bones can occur in a number of ways. For example:

  • You could experience a broken pelvis or hip injury if delivery equipment such as forceps are used incorrectly.
  • Your baby could suffer a broken arm or broken leg if there is a failure to diagnose that the baby is lying in the breach position and they are delivered legs first with an arm or leg being stuck.
  • The baby’s size meant the shoulder needed to be broken or dislocated for the baby to be delivered safely. This could have been avoided with a C-section due to the mother’s very small frame.

However, it is important to remember that in order to claim for a broken bone birth injury, you must be able to prove that it occurred as a result of medical negligence. Sometimes, you or your child can suffer an unavoidable broken bone during the birthing process, and in this case, you may not be able to claim.

To find out if you could be eligible to claim for a broken bone birth injury, contact our advisors today.

Start A No Win No Fee Birth Injury Claim

If you are interested in starting a medical negligence claim, you may find the help of a solicitor from our panel beneficial. Our panel offer their legal services under a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA), a type of No Win No Fee contract.

You typically do not need to pay an upfront fee to access your solicitor’s services under a CFA. Likewise, you won’t need to pay any ongoing fees as they continue to work on your claim. The only fee your solicitor will take when working under a CFA is a success fee, which is only when your claim succeeds.

In this case, they will deduct a percentage of your compensation, though this percentage is legislatively capped. This helps to ensure that you get to keep the majority of your settlement.

Contact Public Interest Lawyers 

Contact our team today to find out if a solicitor from our panel could help you on a No Win No Fee basis. Through a free consultation, one of our advisors can evaluate your broken bone birth injury claim, and give you free and helpful legal advice. To get in touch:

Related Clinical Negligence Claim Guides 

Learn more about clinical negligence claims through our related guides:

Or, find more helpful information here:

Contact our team today for more information on making a broken bone birth injury claim.