Spohrer & Dodd – Coleman vs. USA Settlement Press Release – 2016

By August 26, 2016Uncategorized

Spohrer & Dodd Trial Attorneys Win Judgment for Child vs. Federal Government

Jacksonville, Fla., August 11, 2016 – Spohrer & Dodd trial attorneys, Jay Howanitz and Bob Spohrer, received a federal court order awarding a Georgia family $6.15 million dollars in a case against the federal government. The attorneys filed the medical negligence complaint against the United States of America under the Federal Tort Claims Act, a federal statute allowing private parties to sue the United States for torts committed by persons acting on behalf of the United States. The court found the child suffered severe and permanent disabling injuries during birth due to the negligence of the doctor and nurse.

“The family is pleased with the judge’s decision,” said Howanitz. “The funds will enable the child to receive needed therapy and live a normal life.”

A bench trial was held for this case on January 21, 22, and 23, 2016, which permitted both Plaintiff and Defendant to submit their evidence, testimony and written arguments, which the Court then reviewed. The bench opinion states Howanitz and Spohrer established, “by a preponderance of evidence,” that the doctor and nurse named in the case violated the duty of skill and care.

The child was born at Mirian Worthy Women’s Health Center in Albany, GA. The birth was complicated by shoulder dystocia, which occurs when an infant’s shoulders become wedged against a mother’s pelvis during birth. It can result in critical damage to infants by injuring their brachial plexus, fracturing their clavicle, hypoxia, or even causing death. The plaintiff’s child specifically suffers from brachial plexus palsy due to the difficulty of the delivery.

The mother had delivered three other children under the care of the same nurse midwife. The last two of those deliveries were also complicated by shoulder dystocia, however, the doctor and nurse midwife were able to perform medical maneuvers and procedures to assist in the delivery and avoid injury to the child. The lawsuit showed the mother was never informed of these complications in her two prior childbirths. The Court found the doctor and nurse did not review the mother’s medical history prior to the delivery and concluded there was a reasonable medical probability that they mishandled the delivery resulting in permanent injury to the child.

The Court ruled in favor of the Plaintiff against the United States and granted $6.15 million dollars to the general and specific damages and for past and future medical costs and related expenses.

About Spohrer & Dodd

Spohrer & Dodd is an elite law firm comprised of seasoned trial attorneys, expert professionals and specialized staff. Their experience, diligence, and creativity allow them to help clients achieve positive legal outcomes in the most challenging and complex personal injury cases, which are often cases that other personal injury law firms are unwilling to undertake. Their team of board certified trial lawyers, attorneys and staff, the firm’s intellectual and financial resources, and their network of specialized experts are dedicated to every case their Jacksonville law firm handles. For more information, visit http://sdlitigation.com/.