While vaccines are intended to further the health and well-being of children and adults – and for the most part do – there have been instances when these same vaccines cause serious health complications. Up until the 1980s, the only remedy to be found for this problem involved filing a lawsuit. This tedious and costly process deterred many injured individuals from seeking their deserved compensation.
That all changed in 1988. Congress established the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP) to streamline the entire vaccination process, from the initial supply of vaccines to the way people obtain compensation for complications caused by vaccines.
If you or a loved one was injured as a result of a childhood vaccine, you may have questions about the VICP. Who is eligible? How do you file a claim? What vaccines are included? All of these questions and more will be answered in the following blog post, so keep reading!
Eligibility for the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Fund
Most importantly, the injury must have been caused by one, or a combination, of the vaccines covered by the VICP. There are a number of different vaccines included and new ones are frequently added, but some of the most common are:
- Hepatitis A and B
- Measles, mumps, rubella
- Meningococcal disease
When filing a claim, you must prove that the vaccine directly caused the injury you are suffering from, and the injury must meet one of the conditions described by the VICP. These conditions include a duration of at least six months after the vaccine was given, a required hospital stay and surgery, or death.
The VICP maintains a trust fund which, if your claim is successful, will provide the compensation you deserve. Injured individuals, or their parents or legal guardians, can receive payment in a number of different ways.
Currently, compensation through the VICP trust fund includes:
- Past and future nonreimbursable medical, custodial care, and rehabilitation costs
- Reimbursement for actual and projected pain and suffering, up to $250,000
- Lost earnings
- Reasonable attorneys’ fees and other legal costs
While filing a claim through the VICP is certainly less complicated than filing a lawsuit, it can still be difficult without legal representation. We at Whitley Law Firm have over 80 years of experience representing those who have sustained injuries caused by vaccines. Our Raleigh dangerous drug lawyers can walk you through the entire process and ensure that you are given the best possible chance at a favorable outcome.