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Birth and Catastrophic Injury Litigation

The Birth and Catastrophic Injury Litigation Practice Group consists of a core group of attorneys with experience handling high exposure cases in the Mid-Atlantic and Northeastern states. We understand the complex and sensitive nature of these types of cases, and possess the knowledge and resources necessary to achieve results for our clients.  

The group operates primarily in three areas of litigation: birth injury, non-birth medical malpractice catastrophic injury, and non-medical malpractice catastrophic injury.

Birth Injury Litigation
In this context, we defend directly, assist as a consultant, or serve as a resource or as co-counsel for pre-trial and trial matters. We help develop standard of care, causation and damage defenses, assist in selecting reputable, qualified experts, and preparing to defend against plaintiff experts.

Non-Birth Medical Malpractice Catastrophic Injury Litigation
We serve in the same capacities as in birth injury litigation, with an additional focus on damage defenses in cases involving large claims for future medical expenses.

Non-Medical Malpractice Catastrophic Injury Litigation
Future care costs are high, and scientific or medical issues, causation and damages predominate, or are substantial. We collaborate with other attorneys within our firm who are knowledgeable about the underlying liability issues. Our experience includes helping to defend several claims where a MVA involving a pregnant woman is blamed for a premature baby with complications.

We also offer limited services in selected cases, including the selection, retention and cultivation of experts, jury research, and focus group services, often serving as plaintiff's counsel in mock trials and mock depositions to test the readiness of a defendant or nurse-witness.

Our attorneys keep abreast of the latest trial tactics and trends in medicine. They are often called upon to speak at events hosted by clients and various industry groups. We have access to the country's top experts on:

  • Obstetrics and maternal fetal medicine
  • Pediatrics, including neonatology, neurology, infectious diseases, genetics, neuroradiology and placental pathology
  • Life expectancy
  • Economic loss, including the Affordable Care Act and other damage mitigation techniques
  • Biostatistics and epidemiology
  • Many other scientific and medical subspecialties

Our team can truly make a difference.
Steve Ryan, the chair of the Birth and Catastrophic Injury Litigation Practice Group, has tried more than 200 of these types of cases in his career. He is the only lawyer in the country serving on both the birth injury and catastrophic injury specialty counsel panels of a national insurer, which allows for collaboration and information sharing with the top trial attorneys in the country. Another member of the practice group, David Krolikowski, is a former molecular immunologist with experience in biostatistics, laboratory research, clinical trials, and interpretation of scientific literature, including Daubert and Frye challenges.


Feb 16, 2015
Defense counsel was specially retained by an insurer for a physician who was denied coverage/immunity under Florida's Birth-Related Neurological Injury Compensation Act for failing to timely provide notice of his participation to the patient....
Jun 10, 2014
Achieved a significant defense verdict in a birth injury case on behalf of one of the Philadelphia region's most prestigious hospitals. The case involved allegations that the hospital failed to timely diagnose and treat preeclampsia in the...
Apr 1, 2012
We obtained a defense verdict in a three-week birth injury trial. The plaintiff's economic loss included past medical expenses ($675,000), future wage loss ($2-3 million) and future care costs ($16-18 million present value, $48-$52 million...
Apr 26, 2011
Attorney obtained a unanimous defense verdict in favor of an OBGYN and nurse midwife in a catastrophic brain damaged baby case. The jury returned a verdict against the hospital. The patient, who was pregnant with twins, came to the hospital for a...
Apr 26, 2010
Attorney obtained a defense verdict after a 3 ½ week obstetrical malpractice trial. The plaintiff gave birth to a premature infant at 27 weeks gestation. The infant died at approximately 1 month of age due to necrotizing enterocolitis as a result...
Mar 15, 2010
Attorney obtained a finding of no negligence in favor of an obstetrician after a 2 ½ week Erb's palsy trial in a medical malpractice case. The infant plaintiff, 5 years old at the time of trial, suffered a complete brachial plexus injury (C5, C6, C7...
Mar 1, 2010
Attorneys obtained a finding of no negligence after a 3 week trial seeking damages for death of a viable fetus and for emotional distress secondary to placental abruption following a motor vehicle accident.  The 32 week pregnant mother collided with...
Nov 17, 2008
Attorney obtained a favorable appellate decision from reversing a final administrative order denying defendant hospital Florida Birth-Related Neurological Injury Compensation Act (NICA) benefits. The underlying action involved a traumatic birth...
Oct 27, 2008
Attorneys obtained a defense verdict of no negligence in favor of defendant obstetrician. Plaintiffs alleged negligence in the delivery of their child when shoulder dystocia was encountered. The Minor-Plaintiff, now almost seven years old,...
Jan 29, 2008
Attorneys obtained a defense verdict after a three-week trial on behalf of defendant hospital. Plaintiffs had alleged the wrongful death, specifically, the stillbirth of their son. They claimed that the staff from defendant's clinic, as well as co...


Defense Digest Article March 1, 2017
Defense Digest, Vol. 23, No. 1, March 2017 by T. Kevin FitzPatrick, Esquire Defending high-exposure cases is routine throughout our Health Care Department, but separate and apart are the litigation matters being handled by the attorneys in our..., Defense Digest, Vol. 23, No. 1, March 2017. Defense Digest is prepared by Marshall Dennehey Warner Coleman & Goggin to provide information on recent legal developments of interest to our readers. This publication is not intended to provide legal...
Defense Digest Article June 1, 2010
Marshall, Dennehey, Warner, Coleman & Goggin has been providing defense representation in the area of healthcare liability for over 40 years. Presently, the members of our Healthcare Liability Department are handling over 2,000 medical..., Defense Digest, Vol. 16, No. 2, June 2010
Seminar Jun 26, 2019
Stephen Ryan, chair of the firm’s Birth and Catastrophic Injury Litigation Practice Group, is the co-chair and a presenter at the upcoming 18th Annual Advanced Forum on Obstetric Malpractice Claims Conference. In “Evaluating the Pros and...


Stephen A. Ryan
Chair, Birth and Catastrophic Injury Litigation Practice Group
(610) 354-8254


T. Kevin FitzPatrick
Director, Health Care Department
(610) 354-8252

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