D.C. Maryland and Virginia medical malpractice, accidents and work injuries questions answered by D.C. injury attorneys.

Here are some of the questions people have when they first contact us about D.C., Maryland and Virginia medical malpractice, serious car accidents or workers compensation.

We try to provide as much information as we can based on our experience as medical malpractice lawyers in D.C., Maryland and Virginia and based on representing many hundreds of people who have been injured in accidents or at work in D.C., Maryland and Virginia. 

Here are the basics:

Patients permanently injured by medical malpractice, or the families of patients killed because of medical negligence, when a hospital, HMO or healthcare corporation doesn't follow basic patient safety rules deserve justice - resources to help with the harms and losses due to the  injuries or death of their loved one. 
Drivers who don't follow the rules of the road, driving recklessly, driving drunk, speeding, and texting should be accountable for the harm they cause when their actions cause a car accident or wreck.

Workers hurt on the job deserve workers compensation benefits for lost wages, medical treatment and permanent injuries.  If a worker is killed on the job, his family deserves workers compensation death benefits - to at least help with the financial loss of a loved one.
But since every person is unique, if you have questions or need information about an injury or death in your family, please contact us to talk it through.  We'll talk to you, schedule a free initial meeting and give you all the information we can.

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  • ¿Quién es el mejor abogado para tu familia en DC, Maryland y Virginia


    Los casos de negligencia médica en contra de un hospital, seguro médico global o médicos en DC (así como en Maryland y Virginia) son difíciles. No hay dos maneras de hacerlo. Y hay buenos abogados que manejan casos de negligencia médica, pero usted solo tiene un caso, por lo que necesita el mejor abogado para usted y su familia.


    Hemos escrito una guía para evaluar a cualquier abogado de mala praxis médica en el que pueda estar pensando, para darle algunas de las preguntas importantes que debe hacer sobre la experiencia y las calificaciones. Y eso ayudará a la mayoría de los pacientes a reducir su búsqueda (la ley de mala praxis médica es una especialidad limitada, muchos abogados dicen que lo hacen, o anuncian casos, pero no muchos saben realmente cómo manejar estos casos a un alto nivel).


    Pero además de la experiencia, las calificaciones y los recursos que debe tener un abogado, usted necesita algo más si tiene una lesión catastrófica que ha cambiado su vida e impactado a su familia.


    Necesita un abogado que se comunique con usted, a menudo y claramente, en un lenguaje sencillo (si él o ella no pueden explicar su caso y qué se está haciendo para que usted lo entienda, ¿lo entiende realmente el abogado? Y cómo lo hará el abogado). alguna vez convencer a un jurado?). Su abogado necesita mantenerlo actualizado e informado durante todo el proceso para que sepa qué esperar. La investigación puede llevar mucho tiempo y requerir de una serie de expertos en diferentes especialidades médicas, debe saberlo a medida que avanza.


    También debe recibir llamadas solo para ver cómo se encuentra, cómo se siente, si está ansioso o preocupado por algo (al menos nuestros clientes reciben este tipo de llamadas aproximadamente cada mes).


    Como abogado de negligencia médica, realmente necesita estar preparado para tener una relación con las personas a las que ayuda, por lo que debe conocer a su abogado y confiar en él. Para las personas con las que trabajamos que están paralizadas, tienen daño cerebral y otros problemas médicos importantes, venimos a verlo a su casa, para que se sienta cómodo y podamos conocerlo mejor.


    Estos casos duran mucho tiempo y son complicados: hay mucho en juego si no puede trabajar, necesita que alguien lo cuide debido a sus lesiones, necesita atención médica de por vida, tratamiento y medicamentos, necesita modificaciones en el hogar. . Mucha gente a la que ayudamos necesita todo eso y más.


    Si está buscando el mejor abogado de negligencia médica para usted y su familia en DC, los libros, las guías y los recursos gratuitos que publicamos deberían ayudarlo. Simplemente llámenos al (202)- 393-3320 y se los enviaremos directamente a usted.



  • Will Your Lawyers Come to My House if My Child has Cerebral Palsy or other Serious Injuries?

    I'm home all day with my child who has cerebral palsy and I can't leave him with just anyone. Do your attorneys do house calls?

    The answer is, sometimes. Our attorneys have cases all over DC, Maryland and Virginia and it is possible to schedule a home visit with them.

    We find that sometimes our most productive

    work sessions are with people in their own environment. 

    If you have a child with serious injuries, and it's hard to make it out to an appointment, don't worry, we've got you covered. We can arrange for either a video phone call, or a home visit.

    Here at Donahoe Kearney we have some of the best resources and guides for children and families of children with special needs and we love to make them available to those who need them.

    Do you have a child with special needs and you want information, but it’s going to be really tough for you to come out to our offices? Shoot an email to Brooke Birkey to see if there is a chance that Frank Kearney or Keith Donahoe will be in your area to drop by for a visit, or else to set up a video conference where you can speak with us directly without leaving your home and your child. Call or email at 202-393-3320, or [email protected]

    *attorneys travel periodically for other cases and may be able to see you. Video conferencing is also available for those unable to travel.


    This up and coming publication “Capture the Moment” is designed to give you an at-a-glance guide to information and potential resources for your child but it’s so hot it’s not even on the presses yet. Pre-order yours at [email protected] SUBJECT LINE “Capture the Moment.”

  • How Often is Cerebral Palsy Preventable?


    Could My Child's Cerebral Palsy Have Been Prevented in DC, Maryland or Virginia?

    This is an excellent question considering how devastating cerebral palsy is to a child, and sometimes it is due to complications during labor and delivery, or as a complication of premature birth. Usually, cerebral palsy occurs around the time of birth. Sometimes cerebral palsy can be caused by complications from jaundice, infection and other medical issues the newborn baby has.

    According to the Cerebral Palsy Group, Cerebral Palsy affects approximately 500,000 children and adults, with around 8,000 babies and between 1,200 and 1,500 preschool-age children diagnosed each year.

    Cerebral Palsy is essentially brain damage to a certain part of the brain that can occur as the child develops in the womb, during childbirth due to asphyxia, and in a few other ways. The damage is to the motor cortex of the brain and results in difficulty with gross and fine motor skills development, balance, speech, muscle tone, and other types of development. Cases of Cerebral Palsy range from mild to severe; some children with Cerebral Palsy grow up to be completely self-sufficient while some need 24/7 care now, and will need it for their whole lives - long after their parents are gone.

    In our experience, Cerebral Palsy can be preventable, and because of that, can lead to a medical malpractice lawsuit against the hospital that caused the injuries, to make up for some of the financial harms and losses the baby will suffer.  Medical malpractice in D.C. happens because the hospital or doctors did not comply with the standard medical care the mom or baby needed, and  failed to follow established Patient Safety Rules.

    In this case that we won, we sued a doctor for failing to follow up on a routine test, which resulted in prematurity and Cerebral Palsy with mental retardation that could have been prevented if he had simply gotten the test results and treated the infection with antibiotics - without the test result, they never ordered antibiotics, and the infection spread, causing the mom to deliver prematurely.

    There was no system for making sure important medical test results were followed up on.

    We won a significant award for a family who would likely spend millions on their son's lifetime costs of round-the-clock care because of his cerebral palsy. That case made a significant impact on the family - the right house that was accessible for their son and comfortable for their family, the best care for their son, extra nursing care when he needs it, easy transportation, and a lot more.

    For more information about Cerebral Palsy visit our Cerebral Palsy library  AND  if you're ready to talk about how to start the process of investigating a medical malpractice case for your child, Give us a call at 202-393-3320. You'll speak with a real person who wants to hear your story today.

    https://www.donahoekearney.com/.../what-are-the-signs-and-symptoms-of- cerebral-palsy-in-a-child-or-infant.cfm
    DC Medical malpractice lawyer explains Cerebral Palsy is a movement disorder caused by an injury or abnormality of the brain, usually around the time of birth.


    https://www.donahoekearney.com/ Cerebral palsy cases are complex and require detailed evaluation and investigation. In this video, D.C. medical malpractice ...
    https://www.donahoekearney.com/.../suing-the-hospital-if-my-child-has- cerebral-palsy.cfm
    https://www.donahoekearney.com/.../cerebral-palsy-diagnoses-in-dc- maryland-and-virginia.cfm
    cases of cerebral palsy in DC, Maryland, and Virginia can be diagnosed anywhere from as early as 2 years old to as late as 10 years old.


    Cerebral Palsy. It seems like sometimes the only people who really know about a thing, are the people who have experienced it. Cerebral palsy is kind of like ...
    https://www.donahoekearney.com/.../cerebral-palsy-caused-by-hospital- negligence.cfm
    One of the hardest parts of investigating a medical malpractice case in DC, Maryland or Virginia against a hospital is having to deal with the internal conflict that ...
    My son has Cerebral Palsy. I live in DC and I think it was caused by malpractice. What do I do next to help my son with cerebral palsy?
    https://www.donahoekearney.com/.../could-your-childs-cerebral-palsy-have- been-avoided.cfm
    What is the cause of my child's cerebral palsy?” We hear this question quite often, since we represent many families with children suffering from cerebral pals.

  • When Does Cerebral Palsy Start to Show?

    Signs of Cerebral Palsy to Watch For

    Cerebral Palsy is a condition resulting from lack of oxygen to the brain during birth, called asphyxia. Although you may have awareness of having a traumatic birth, you may not even know that your child has Cerebral Palsy until he or she is one or two or three years, and even five years old. Sometimes even later.

    If there was a traumatic birth the doctors should (but most of the time don't) make you aware of the risk of Cerebral Palsy. The reason for this is because many times, traumatic birth is a result of malpractice - many times you and the baby showed signs of distress, both maternal (mom) and fetal (baby) and the doctors at the hospital didn't take action to deliver the baby until it was too late and the damage was done.  And a lot of times, we see interns and residents taking care of labor and delivery patients in DC hospitals - sometimes they don't know when to call the attending physician or a specialist to evaluate you and the baby.

    Diagnosis of Cerebral Palsy usually comes after you and  your child's doctor (pediatrician) begin to notice that your child is not reaching his or her developmental benchmarks or milestones.  In some cases, it is diagnosed in the NICU when the baby is very young. 

    Some of the noticeable benchmarks include:

    Rolling over;


    Crawling; and


    Other impairments include loss of muscle tone, gross and fine motor functions, balance, control, coordination, reflexes, and posture.

    Today I read on a Facebook post that a family didn't know their child had Cerebral Palsy until he was 10 years old. We've had a case where the mom knew her son had cerebral palsy but the hospital never told her the cause, even though he got all of his medical care there.  

    The time limits vary in DC, Maryland and Virginia for bringing a case for a child who was injured or has cerebral palsy, but the time limits are longer for children than adults, so don't think that you have run out of time - call us and we can tell you how much time you have left on the statute of limitations. 

    At Donahoe Kearney we specialize in Cerebral Palsy cases, so we know exactly what to look for in medical records, exactly which developmental delays to watch for, and how to manage opposing doctors, lawyers, and others who are protecting the interests of the hospital and its insurance company. Give us a call today for a free investigation and to learn more about our process.


  • Are Your Lawyers Aggressive?


    The other day I got a question from a potential client: "Are you guys aggressive?"

    I had to chuckle to myself because being aggressive is one of the hallmarks of our representation. How can I explain it?

    It shows itself differently in different practice areas, but yes, we are very aggressive. And we only take cases that we really believe in - which means that if you're our client, you've got our full support and resources.

    In workers' compensation, if you're not getting paid or getting the appropriate medical treatment, we will file for a formal hearing and go to court over it. No problem. Any day of the week.

    In medical malpractice we will build the strongest case possible and go for the fullest recovery we can get under the law. 

    In personal injury and negligence, same.

    Just ask our clients.

    If you've been seriously injured at work in Washington, DC, experienced medical malpractice at a hospital in Washington, DC, Maryland, or Virginia, or been serious injured in an auto accident or due to someone else's negligence in another way in DC, MD, and/or VA give us a call today. It's your life, and you should be represented by experts and veterans in their fields.

  • How Do Medical Malpractice Lawyers Get Paid?

     Medical Malpractice Lawyers in DC, Maryland and Virginia

    We hear this question a lot - most people want to know right up front if you're going to be charging them by the hour. In fact they expect it, so sometimes we find that people are wary to accept consultations because they think somehow we are going to charge them for it.

    A lot of lawyers do - but the reality is that we are not like most lawyers. We would never, ever charge you without telling you about it first. 

    And here's the thing: we don't normally charge an hourly rate for medical malpractice cases. In fact, we don't charge a fee in any serious injury case unless we win or settle your case. Which means that we don't get paid unless you get paid. There is no risk to you, no upfront payment, no retainer. That's simply how it works. It's called a contingency fee.

    How are we able to do this?  Not be paid until the end of your case, and only if we win?

    There are a lot of factors and reasons why - but it comes down to our experience, our confidence, our expertise with the medicine and most of all, our commitment and desire to help people who have been severely injured. 

    The first stage is: reviewing medical records. We will review your records first to see if you have a case - and remember, that is different than the evaluation of a person. Most of the time we will ask you to send them to us for review via email, US mail, or fax. Or we might ask you to come in and bring them.  Or if you don't have them, we arrange to get them for you.

    The second stage is: full-on investigation. We will have you sign a medical release and we will unleash our own resources in order to investigate your case. That will probably include medical research, consultations with appropriate experts in the field, reviewing medical literature and studies, and working with you to determine what happened and why. 

    We have a system of evaluating everything for you so that you can get answers, information and make the best decisions for you and your family.  Part of that analysis is the strengths and weaknesses of a case - and we are very selective with the medical malpractice cases that we take because we want to do everything we can to put you in the best position to get a meaningful recovery.  We don't want to put anyone through litigation unless it will make a difference in their lives.

    The third stage is: filing the case with the appropriate courts. Once we are sure that the medical records support the case and we have experts lined up to testify, we will file the case.

    From there it is a long haul of discovery, depositions, and other types of litigation documents and processes. We will be leading you every step of the way and prepare you for every meeting. The case will take years to progress but don't worry - we have an excellent track record.

    And we will keep pushing forward, supporting you every step of the way. And when the case eventually settles or we win the case in court, you will be happy that you put in the long hours and kept with it, even in the face of the uncertainty and the risk.

    So, no matter what kind of case you have don't worry about it. We will help you figure out if you have a case and if we end up taking your case, we will fight aggressively to win your case. That's just the kind of lawyers we are.

    If you have been seriously injured in Washington, DC, Maryland at a hospital due to malpractice, due to medical treatment or a misdiagnosis, please call us today at 202-393-3320. You'll speak to a real person today who wants to hear your story.

  • What is Cerebral Palsy?

    Cerebral Palsy 

    It seems like sometimes the only people who really know about a thing, are the people who have experienced it. Cerebral palsy is kind of like that. It's common enough to have a fantastic, large support network in DC, Maryland and Virginia but there's not a whole lot known about it typically to those who are on the outside. 

    Because cerebral palsy is sometimes not diagnosed until the child is old enough to notice a delay in motor skills and other types of development, medical malpractice can go unnoticed. The parents are overwhelmed with the news, the adjustments they have to make, the special-needs resources they have to research and other practicalities that come with the diagnosis.

    Who has time to go back to the hospital, analyze medical records, test results and studies, and determine the cause of their child's cerebral palsy (because the hospital will never tell you they caused it)?

    I recently saw a question posted on a cerebral palsy support page on Facebook, asking a poll as to how many parents have long-term plans for their kids. I was amazed (but not surprised) at the number of parents who did not have a long-term plan for their kiddos. A day in the life of a child with CP is lived in daily increments. But a long-term plan is crucial because, let's face it, the parents aren't going to be able to care for the child forever. And most CP kiddos outlive their parents.

    At Donahoe Kearney we try to make it easier on the parents. We bring all of the information to them in what we call a Special Needs Packet - which includes articles on the cause of cerebral palsy (which is lack of oxygen to the brain, or the medical term is asphyxia), often the result of residents and interns at a DC hospital who do not recognize the signs of fetal distress and need to deliver the baby before it's too late, a checklist on how to spot developmental delays, a how-to guide on how to investigate your child's medical history and your (the mother's) medical history (because asphyxia is almost always caused by an undiagnosed problem or delay in delivery). And finally we top it all off with the Special Needs Resource Guide - our signature book detailing resources available to children with special needs and their families.

    If we have helped out a family, that's good enough for us. But if that family has been affected by medical malpractice and we can help them get a settlement to cover the lifetime costs associated with cerebral palsy, to give them some freedom and take away some of the stress and worry they are feeling over what will happen to their child when they can no longer take care of him or her - even better.

    Click on the video below to learn more about our philosophy from our Client Services Director, Brooke Birkey.

    CALL US TODAY AT 202-393-3320 for a free informational interview and free resources for you and your child. 

  • What is brachial plexus? What is Erb's Palsy?


    Brachial Plexus is a nerve injury that can occur during birth, if there is distress and the head is stretched too far away from the neck. This can result in nerve damage, and can be bad enough to cause a permanent disability in the arm. The problem is, perhaps you didn't know for awhile that the baby even had brachial plexus, and the doctor's never connected it to a birth injury.

    Why would they? It's their neck on the line, so to speak.

    The brachial plexus nerves are located underneath the clavicle and are a network of nerves that control sensing and motion communications between the brain and the arm. The network of nerves is connected to your spinal chord. Your child may have brachial plexus if he or she is unable to move one of their arms, or seems to have a lack of sensitivity to that area. Brachial plexus is also called "Erb's Palsy" when the upper area is affected.

    The disability brought about during a brachial plexus injury varies from case to case, but in case of an avulsion (when the nerve is torn away from the spinal chord) or a rupture (a tear in the nerves) the injury is far more serious and may require years of physical and occupational therapy to help the injury itself and help the child to learn to compensate for the injury.

    Not all difficult deliveries can be prevented, but in the case of an unnecessarily prolonged birth, or a poorly-handled breech presentation, or other types of traumatic births, your physician or hospital/provider may be held responsible for your child's birth injuries and special needs. Your child may require ongoing medical treatment and physical/occupational therapy, psychological services, and eventually may need to account for lost wages if the injuries prevent them from working and the cost of care after they are grown. 

    Children with serious Erb's Palsy can learn to be independent, but they need special resources to get to that point.

    Does your child have signs of Erb's Palsy, or did you have a difficult delivery and now your child is showing developmental delays? Don't hesitate to call us today at 202-393-3320. You only have so much time to file a lawsuit, and cases get harder to prove the more years that go by-- medical records get destroyed, details get forgotten and before you know it you've cost your child their financial recovery that can help them to live a normal life.

    Don't delay. Call us today - there is absolutely no cost to have your case evaluated, and we will be very upfront with you on whether or not you have a case. We promise not to string you along, or bill you by the hour. If you don't make a recovery, we don't make a recovery. That's why we only take the cases we think we can win and make a substantial recovery for you and your family.

    Want more information on children and medical malpractice claims? We have a book for that! Two, in fact. "Picking up the Pieces" will give you the A-Z on children's medical malpractice claims, and the "Special Needs Resource Guide" gives lots of practical tips and resources for children with special needs. Order your free copies today by clicking on the links, or the titles below.

    Want to hear a great story about one of "our kids" we helped after a significant childhood injury? Click here to read about Calvin.


  • Should I consider suing the hospital for my child's cerebral palsy?

    Suing a hospital for your child's cerebral palsy - how to get started.

    Deciding whether or not to have your child's case investigated is an important decision. Truly, I can’t imagine what your situation is like at this point. But I do know I’m glad you have connected with us.

    It's our personal promise to anyone that has a child with a serious birth injury or a mother who has been through birth trauma and their child has developmental delays or cerebral palsy as a result -- we won't share your information. We won't try to convince you that you have a case if you don't really have one. And we will never insinuate that you child  is anything but perfect. We know they are perfect - just the way they are.

    We also know that the lifetime costs of caring for a child with cerebral palsy can cost   tens of  millions of dollars.

    If you fill out the contact form on this page and/or order one of our free books, guides, or reports we will stay in touch with you to see how you are doing - whether or not you have your case investigated.

    I’ll tell you why we do that: when we see someone in this situation we can genuinely help, we want to make sure that person feels cared for before they ever become a client, whether or not they eventually become a client. That’s why we check in regularly and send you additional information. Of course, whenever you’re ready to chat, I would love to schedule an appointment for the two of us. Until then, we’ll remain in touch just to make sure you’re at least getting answers to the complex questions facing you right now.

    You can also reach me at 202-393-3320 -- You can ask for me, Brooke Birkey directly and I will take your call, no matter when you call.

    We have make a really big impact on the lives of children who have bee affected by medical malpractice.

    Check out Calvin's story here. 

  • My son has cerebral palsy. What Do I Do Now?

    Cerebral palsy caused by medical malpractice 

    Most people don't know where to start when it comes to investigating a medical malpractice claim. Liability may seem clear or obvious, but you don't know the statutes or the process, or what your case may be worth.

    If you have a child with Cerebral Palsy, you have a lot to think about.

    THE FIRST THING that we always do with a potential medical malpractice claim is RESEARCH.

    We have a specific system we've developed that we customize for every family.

    This is in addition to ordering a full copy of the medical records associated with your child's (or niece/nephew/cousin) birth because the primary cause of Cerebral Palsy is asphyxia (which means, the child's brain went too long without getting proper oxygen). This may be due to a delayed Cesarean birth, to acceleration or deceleration of the baby's heartbeat (fetal distress), preeclampsia (maternal distress) and other types of medical mistakes that happen as a result of violating Patient Safety Rules.

    Once violations of the patient safety rules, or the standards of care a patient should get, are established by the medical experts we work with to analyze your case, we wait for the appropriate time to file the lawsuit, with the statute of limitations in mind.  This depends on your child's specific injury and whether that requires waiting so we can accurately assess whether the child is hitting developmental milestones and benchmarks. Most of the time, we will have your child examined by an independent physician to help determine the extent of his harms.  A lot of what needs to be done will depend on how developmentally delayed the child might be and how much care he or she will require over the course of their lifetime. 

    We are different than a lot of other firms because we wait to see the whole picture before we file the lawsuit.

    And we will be with you, the parents, aunts, uncles, and other family members throughout the whole process. 

    Is there a child in your life who has Cerebral Palsy or other types of developmental delays, and you are wondering what the next steps might be? The good news is, if we take your case, you don't have to worry about the next steps because we are taking care of it. And you don't have to worry about whether or not you can afford us, because we don't take a fee unless we make a recovery for you.

    Call us today at 202-393-3320 to get started with a no-risk, no obligation free consultation.