Vaccines save lives by preventing disease. Fortunately, most people who get vaccines have no serious problems. Vaccines, like any medicines, can cause side effects, but most are very rare and very mild. In very rare cases, a vaccine can cause a very serious problem, such as an allergic reaction. When those very rare problems occur, individuals may be entitled to compensation through the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP).
What Is the Vaccine Injury Compensation Trust Fund?
In 1986, Congress crated the VICP, which provides compensation for people injured by a covered vaccine, such as a flu shot, MMR vaccine, tetanus shot, and other vaccines. It is a Federal "no-fault" system designed to compensate individuals or families of individuals who have been injured by covered vaccines. (The VICP specifies the vaccines covered under the program.) Although the COVID-19 vaccine is not a covered vaccine under the VICP, individuals may still be entitled to compensation through the Countermeasures Injury Compensation Program (CICP).
Unlike a civil lawsuit wherein the plaintiff/petitioner is seeking compensation from a defendant, claims through the VICP are paid from the Vaccine Injury Compensation Trust Fund. By filing a claim through the VICP, the injured party is petitioning the court for compensation from the Trust Fund. Petitioners can recover compensation for pain and suffering, lost wages, and past and future medical expenses.
The VICP is unlike traditional civil lawsuits. Although it is referred to as the Vaccine Court, the system is more comparable to applying for benefits rather than suing a negligent party. The injured party (“petitioner”) does not testify at a deposition or answer interrogatories. Rather, the petitioner shares details of his or her vaccine injury through a written affidavit. In some more complex cases, the petitioner could be required to provide testimony at a hearing.
How Grewal Law PLLC Can Help You
Vaccine injury claims are complicated, and we would always recommend retaining a lawyer to file your claim. Under the rules of the program, your lawyer is also paid through the program funds, meaning you do not pay any attorney fees. If you have suffered an injury that may be related to a vaccine, contact the vaccine attorneys at Grewal Law PLLC for a free consultation — fill out an online form or call (888) 211-5798 today.