No One Expects a Vaccine to Cause Them Harm
The first wave of Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine went out last week, signaling a pivotal turning point in the nearly-year-long pandemic. In the coming months, communities across the nation will begin receiving the first dose of the promising vaccination from Pfizer manufacturing in Portage, Michigan.
Already, we see companies like Amazon lobbying for priority as virus cases spike in nearly every state. There is also widespread confusion about who should get the vaccine and who should not, a contentious subject amongst political opponents, healthcare workers, policymakers, and the general public.
With the vaccine officially a reality, the question of virus vaccine lawsuits has come up. As we discussed earlier this month, vaccine lawsuits have a long history in the United States. The National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act of 1986 created the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP), which compensates people who have adverse reactions or otherwise suffer injuries by vaccines.
Since then, there have been more than 20,000 petitions filed for injuries and fatalities connected to vaccines. Over 6,000 claimants have received compensation for vaccine-related injuries over the last 35 years. Between 2013 and 2017, the program paid out an average of $229 million each year.
The Dallas vaccine injury lawyers at Shamieh Law want to help those injured by vaccinations. We understand how stressful these types of cases are, especially since you never expect a vaccine to do more harm than good. Unfortunately, this does happen to some people. And they deserve compensation for their injuries.
Today, we will cover steps to take when filing a lawsuit and what compensation you can expect to help you understand what to expect if you suffer following the COVID-19 vaccine or another vaccination. To learn more about filing a vaccine lawsuit in Dallas, please contact Shamieh Law and schedule a free consultation.
What Do I Need to File a Vaccine Lawsuit?
As the vaccine makes its way to the rest of the population over the coming months, we anticipate possible lawsuits. For a vaccination claim to be eligible and move forward, there are several important factors to keep in mind:
- You must file the claim within three years of the first symptom of an injury following vaccination.
- If the injury led to death, you must file the claim no more than two years following the death and four years after the first symptoms started.
- The first step to all cases filed under the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program is to file a petition with the U.S. Court of Federal Claims in Washington, D.C.
- After the petition is filed, a specialized judge will be assigned to your case and is responsible for deciding the outcome, should it go to trial.
- Many vaccine cases are settled outside of court with the Secretary of Health and Human Services.
- Vaccine lawsuits brought under the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program are typically quicker than civil litigation and often settle within six months. However, others are more complex and take longer.
Who is eligible?
Before you can move forward with any step of filing a vaccine injury lawsuit, it is essential to make sure you are eligible. There are three main types of people who can file a vaccine injury claim with the VICP:
- Those who received a vaccine covered by the VICIP and believe their injury is a direct result of the vaccination
- Those who are parents or the legal guardian of someone who suffered an injury because of a vaccine
- Those who are acting as a legal guardian for a deceased person whose death was caused by a vaccine
It is also important to note that for virus vaccine lawsuits to be valid, the side effect or adverse reaction must last for at least six months.
How the Vaccine Injury Compensation Program Works
Compensation will depend on a host of factors surrounding the case. Typically, claimants are awarded monetary damages for the following:
- Pain and suffering
- Past and future medical expenses
- Lost wages (past and future)
- Attorney’s fees
- Emotional distress
In virus lawsuits, the maximum compensation that you can receive for pain and suffering is $250,000. However, claimants can receive more than that for medical expenses and lost wages, as there is no limit to the compensation awarded. You also must provide medical records proving you suffered injuries. Also, they must show that the adverse reaction from the vaccine led to these injuries.
The Dallas vaccine injury lawyers at Shamieh Law keep a watchful eye on virus vaccine lawsuits. And we are here to answer your questions. Our team plans to monitor the situation regarding the rollout of the COVID-19 vaccine. To find out more about your options or schedule an appointment to discuss your options, please contact Shamieh Law today.