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You can’t turn back time but you can get what you are entitled to.

Client Testimonial: Blindness claim

Client Testimonial: Blindness claim

We are proud and privileged to be able to change people’s lives with what we do.  Below is a wonderfully touching testimonial from one of our clients whose son is blind due to Retinopathy of Prematurity.

The story of our Son

Our son was born on the 16th of May 1999, severely premature. He was born at 26 weeks and weighed a mere 751 grams.  He was hospitalized for 11 weeks in total.  The day we were told we could take him home was the happiest day of our lives. He was still on oxygen, so therefore, we had to have a machine installed in our house, to assist with his breathing. Everything was wonderful, he was born a premature and he survived.

But, then the worst news any parent wants to hear, and that is that there is something wrong with this precious little person.  We started to notice that he did not respond to light or any type movement.  We made an appointment with an ophthalmologist who informed us that he has ROP stage 5 bilateral, which means that he is totally blind in both eyes. We also discovered he has cerebral palsy. Our world came tumbling down. What now, where do we go, what do we do???

Our lives changed instantaneously. We were financially challenged, which was a great concern because our son will require specialised treatment and therapy. Our medical aid was exhausted by March of every year and our debt was probably more than triple what we earned.

In 2008 I came across an advertisement of Paul du Plessis Attorneys in a newspaper, regarding medical negligence relating to Retinopathy of Prematurity.

The legal journey

In August 2008 we made contact with Paul du Plessis, and our lives changed. After the gathering of all the documentation, Paul did what he does best, he fought for our son. He was always readily available to answer any of our questions or calm us down. The journey was tiring, and there was a time that we wanted to just let go and not go on. But we were reminded to focus on the goal and what we can achieve for Brendan by continuing.

The first trial date had been set for the 28th of May 2010 and shortly before we heard the news that the defendant agreed to pay for our son’s damages due to his blindness as a result of their negligence. Ok, what does that mean? Again, Paul reassured us and explained in detail that an amount would be determined only after quantification of our son’s disability.  This meant that he had to be assessed by numerous specialists, doctors and professors.

The quantification process took approximately 6 months. We were notified that a new court date had been set for the 31st of May 2011. Then again, just before his birthday in May, the defendant approached Paul and informed him that they wanted to table a settlement proposal. We were contacted, an appointment was made and a settlement was signed. We had won!!

In June of 2011 the monies were paid into a secured Trust for our son. This lifted an enormous financial burden from the family, so much that I could be stay at home and be his full-time caregiver. We were able to provide him with the best medical care possible, no matter what the cost.

Since the settlement:

  • Our son had his cerebral palsy operated on and he can walk properly.
  • We were able to build him a therapy centre on our property, where he receives his therapy.
  • He gets therapy three times a week, occupational and physiotherapy.
  • Blind SA is on board as well, assisting him with independence training as well as mobility.
  • He has a love for music, and we were able to provide him with musical instruments.
  • We now have specialists transferring their skill to me, to assist with his development.

We would like to thank Paul and his team from the bottom of our hearts for everything they did for Brendan and for us as a family. Without you guys, we don’t know what our future would have been like.  But now, it is damn awesome.

We want to help you too

If your child is living with Retinopathy of Prematurity and you would like to know more, contact Paul du Plessis Attorneys at 012 809 1588 or send an e-mail to paul@pauldup.co.za to arrange your free consultation.