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Allowance for brain damaged child

My son had a brain damage from birth and we were not told is going to have disability until he was a year old. Can we get his domiciliary and care allowance backdated.

This is a terrible tragedy for any couple who has a child born with brain damage after all the excitement and expectation of the birth, then to be told even at a later time that there is damage. 

 

There are two aspects to this listener’s question – firstly, the Domiciliary and Care Allowance can be back-dated to the date of application for the allowance but not any earlier than that in normal circumstances.  Like all of these benefits, the Department of Social Welfare has certain discretion but I wouldn’t rely on their exercising it in your favour. 

 

The second aspect is that if you were to find that the hospital were at fault for the damage done to your child at birth (such as lack of oxygen at birth due to bad monitoring) then you can sue the hospital and any other professionals involved in the process for very substantial damages because it may require your child to have nursing care for the rest of his life.  If this can be proven then the Domiciliary and Care Allowance will date from birth as part of the claim.  You should see a solicitor as soon as possible if you suspect there may be clinical negligence.

The issues raised in the answer to this NewsTalk listener's question are dealt with in a general way as can only be the case on live radio. Before relying on the advice given in this answer, whether you heard the broadcast or are for the first time reading the issues here please do not rely on the broad advice given. For a detailed professional opinion please consult a qualified legal advisor and for further details read our disclaimer on the Home Page.

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