What laws govern midwife malpractice?

What laws govern midwife malpractice?

Many women opt to have a midwife deliver their baby. However, when complications arise leading to birth injuries, parents may not know where to turn.

In California, midwives typically fall into one of two designations: A “licensed midwife” or a “certified nurse-midwife.” Licensed mid-wives are authorized to assist with “normal” pregnancies and provide prenatal and post-partum care, including delivering babies – as long as the delivery fits within certain criteria.

Certified nurse-midwifes, on the other-hand, undergo additional obstetrical training, and are generally registered nurses. CNMs often work in hospitals and birthing centers. If a midwife, regardless of designation, acts negligently, and an infant sustains any type of birth injury, it may be possible to file a lawsuit for damages.

Different laws and regulation govern each professional, so it is important to discuss your options with an experienced California birth injury attorney. Legal avenues may include both civil and criminal actions, depending on the nature of the injury and whether the midwife was acting within his or her allowed scope of duties.

Further laws governing midwives vary greatly across the country, with a significant gray area concerning the available remedies when a non-nurse midwife cause injury, with great concern involving home deliveries and/or birth centers that are unaffiliated with hospitals and overseen primarily by midwives who lack medical training or malpractice insurance.

For more information or if you or your child has sustained harm during labor and delivery, please contact the dedicated California birth injury lawyers at Bostwick & Peterson, LLP for an immediate consultation. 


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