Stillbirth & Neonatal Death Claims

Stillbirth & Neonatal Death Claims

Losing a baby to neonatal death or stillbirth is an incredibly painful experience. It is a traumatic event that can have lasting consequences on your mental health, emotional wellbeing, and your family’s future.

A lot of parents faced with the loss of a baby are worried about future pregnancies. Many find it challenging to carry on with their everyday lives as they are haunted by feelings of guilt, mourning, and often, failure. Our team of stillbirth and neonatal death claims experts are dedicated to helping parents reclaim their lives and carry on.

We offer compassionate legal support in these sensitive circumstances. Our team of experts devise strong evidence-based cases  for your stillbirth & neonatal death claims to ensure you receive the right level of compensation for your significant loss.  

To start a stillbirth or neonatal death claim, please get in touch with our medical negligence solicitors by calling 01253 766 559 or completing this form.

Why do stillbirth & neonatal death claims exist?

If you have never experienced the loss of a baby, you may not be aware of how frequent stillbirths and neonatal deaths are in the UK. Every day, 15 babies born in the UK are stillborn or die shortly after. The tragic loss can happen for a variety of reasons, many of which are, unfortunately, unavoidable, such as complications with the placenta, a genetic physical defect, a haemorrhage during or before labour or premature birth. However, in other cases, medical professionals have made mistakes that could have been avoided. We are leading birth injuries specialists with in excess of 25 years’ experience, committed to supporting families who are dealing with the loss of a baby following a preventable stillbirth or neonatal death.

We know that these circumstances are highly traumatic for parents. A stillbirth is when a baby is born dead after 24 weeks of pregnancy. The death can occur in the womb or during delivery. For mothers, it can be extremely difficult as some have to carry the baby until delivery, knowing and feeling that the child isn’t alive anymore. We stand by your side to help you to obtain compensation in a stillbirth claim if this could and should have been avoided in order to help you to rebuild your life.

With neonatal death, parents welcome a living baby into the world. Sadly, the baby dies within 28 days of birth which is a heartbreaking experience for parents. When a neonatal death occurs, many unavoidable factors can be responsible. A neonatal death claim however, is when the loss could have been prevented had the appropriate medical care been provided.

Who can I turn to for support after a stillbirth or neonatal death?

We understand that in the event of a death, parents can find it hard to say goodbye to their baby. We recommend to parents who consult us for stillbirth and neonatal death claims to reach out to charities such as Little Things & CoSands and The Birth Trauma Association for advice and emotional support. You have three years after the incident, or date of knowledge, to start a compensation claim.

What can I do if I believe that the loss of my baby was preventable?

Our team of medical and legal birth injury experts are committed to helping parents receive the answers and justice that they need to move on with their lives. No compensation can replace your baby, but it can help you to rebuild your family’s future. Parents come to see us when they want to investigate whether the loss of their baby was avoidable. They feel that the treatment that both mother and baby received was below acceptable standards and that it could have contributed to the stillbirth or neonatal death.

We request the medical records on your behalf to understand the situation and gather evidence of medical negligence. We work with some of the best independent medical experts in the country to get to the truth of what happened to your baby.

This helps us to identify what went wrong leading to the loss of your baby. This may include:

We offer compassionate legal support in these sensitive circumstances. Our team of experts devise strong evidence-based cases for your stillbirth & neonatal death claims to ensure you receive the right level of compensation for your significant loss.

To find out more about how our team of experts can help, you can listen to Alison’s story.

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What to expect through your birth injury claims process

Initial Appointment With Our Team

After you get in touch with us, we will listen to you and discuss your situation, including the healthcare advice you were given, and any evidence of negligent treatment.

We will need to apply for your medical records from various places, including the place you had treatment, other hospitals, and your GP practice.

We will then provide an honest assessment of whether we think you have a claim worth further investigation. We will explain the claims process and the fees involved.

Building Your Case

We will start collecting evidence to support your claim. This typically includes applying for any further medical records, other documents from the hospital, obtaining witness statements and independent medical experts’ reports.

Sending a Letter of Claim

Once the facts of the case are clear, we will contact the NHS Trust or healthcare provider to inform them a claim is being investigated. The Letter of Claim (LOC) will set out the details of the alleged medical negligence and the injuries caused.

The Defendant’s Response

The Defendant is required to respond to our Letter of Claim (LOC) within four months. At this stage, they will either accept full, or partial, liability and may offer a financial settlement, or deny responsibility.

Issuing Court Proceedings

If the Defendant denies responsibility, or does not offer a sufficient settlement amount, we can then issue court proceedings on your behalf to take the claim further. The Defendant will be given 28 days to respond, and the court will then set a hearing date, usually around 18 months from when proceedings are initiated.


It is important to note that while issuing court proceedings is an essential step, it is rare that you will need to attend a hearing as most claims that reach this stage can be resolved with a pre-trial settlement.

Court Timetable

The Court will then set a timetable for the exchange of evidence in the case. We will exchange any witness statement taken from you, and receive the witness statements (if any), of the clinicians involved in your care.

There will then be an exchange of medical expert evidence. Each party can obtain independent medical expert reports in each relevant discipline. For example, in a birth injury claim, both parties would have commissioned reports from independent obstetricians. We disclose the report we have obtained on your behalf and the Defendant has to disclose the report they have obtained.

The independent experts then have a meeting, separate to each party’s legal representatives, to narrow the issues for the Judge in the event the case goes to a trial. After this meeting, the medical experts have to produce a jointly written statement to provide to the Judge.

Settlement Negotiations

It is usual procedure to attend some form of pre-trial settlement resolution with the Defendant, either in the form of a settlement meeting, or a mediation. We have a very strong track record of negotiating pre-trial settlements and will explore every potential avenue to do so if your claim reaches this stage.

If your claim settles at this stage and involves a vulnerable party, such as a child or an adult with a brain injury, an approval hearing will be held by a High Court Judge to approve the settlement reached.

Trial By Judge

If your claim cannot be resolved outside a court hearing, we can offer experienced, and highly skilled, advocacy to secure the best possible outcome for your family.

Quantification Of Your Claim


Most claims are resolved in full through the above process. However, very complex claims, including birth injury claims, require an additional step to assess the quantification (value) of the claim.

For birth injury claims, additional independent medical experts will be required to assess issues such as life expectancy and care needs, and the process above will be repeated for the stage of quantification.

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Diane Rostron at Addies Solicitors

Diane Rostron at Addies Solicitors

Complex birth injuries specialist with 25+ years' expertise. Recognised by Legal 500.

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Start Your Journey Today

To start a compensation claim today, or for more information simply complete the form below.