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Illinois Appellate Court upholds $1.03 million birth injury jury verdict for 10-year old girl disabled by negligent delivery

A jury verdict of $1.03 million awarded to a 10-year old girl in a birth injury lawsuit in 2006 was upheld last week by the Illinois First District Appellate Court. Attorney Jeffrey E. Martin of Chicago-based injury law firm Levin & Perconti, was able to give his 10-year old client good news: she will receive the medical care she needs to regain function in her right arm and shoulder.

In July 2006, a Cook County jury found that the defendant obstetrician failed to use appropriate maneuvers in delivering the child, permanently damaging the nerves in her right brachial plexus, and finding for the Illinois plaintiff in the medical malpractice lawsuit.

On appeal, the defendants argued that the trail court improperly barred the testimony of a defense expert. The Illinois appellate court disagreed, finding that the defense expert’s methodology, using a computer-based mathematical model to evaluate the delivery, did not meet the requirements of Frye v. United States, the standard required of testifying experts. The Illinois court further held that the expert’s testimony was cumulative, or the same as, another expert testifying for the defense. Thus, the Illinois appellate court decided, the trial court’s barring of the defense expert was not a ground for reversal.

Click here for the press release Click here for the opinion of the Appellate Court of Illinois First Judicial District