“To be compensated by the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP), you must file a petition with the U.S. Court of Federal Claims. . . . Because this is a legal process, most people hire a lawyer.” – Health Resources and Services Administration
You do not need to hire a lawyer in order to seek financial compensation for a vaccine-related injury. Individuals who are harmed by vaccines have the option of filing a petition on their own, which is also known as filing pro se. You can represent yourself in the U.S. Court of Federal Claims and engage the government’s lawyers without an attorney, and you can attempt to negotiate a settlement without legal representation.
Of course, while these are all options, they generally are not the best options available. This is because:
- The claims process is subject to a complex set of rules, and making mistakes may jeopardize your rights;
- Vaccine cases often involve complicated medical issues and an experienced vaccine attorney can help gather and present the evidence needed to prevail on your claim;
- Without a lawyer, there is a good chance that you will unknowingly settle for less than you deserve (assuming you secure any financial recovery); and,
- Under the rules governing the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP), individuals are entitled to no-cost legal representation that does not reduce the amount of their recovery.
Challenges with Filing a Claim Under the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP)
When filing a claim under the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP), what you are really doing is filing a petition with the U.S. Court of Federal Claims (commonly known as the “Vaccine Court”). While the VICP is designed to make it easier for individuals with vaccine injuries to recover the money they need to cover their medical bills and other losses, the government still has an interest in ensuring that it does not pay invalid claims. As a result, the government will assign experienced attorneys to defend your case. Those attorneys are there to prevent you from receiving compensation unless and until you prove that you are entitled to a financial recovery under the terms of the VICP.
In addition, the Vaccine Court has complex rules in place governing everything from when and how you file your claim to what goes on in proceedings before the Court. If you fail to follow the rules, you could jeopardize your claim for compensation.
Calculating the True Extent of Your Vaccine Injury Losses
Under the VICP, not only are you entitled to compensation for your medical bills to date, but you are also entitled to coverage for your future medical expenses, your pain and suffering, and other losses. In order to truly seek just compensation, you need to know how to accurately calculate your losses (present and future) in each category.
No-Cost Legal Representation for Vaccine Injury Claims
Finally, under the terms of the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP), all petitioners are entitled to no-cost legal representation. You still get to pick your own attorney, and the VICP pays your legal fees separately from your award of financial compensation. This is different from other types of injury claims where your attorney retains a percentage of your award.
Learn More About Filing a Vaccine Claim in a Free, No-Obligation Consultation
To learn more about the benefits of hiring an attorney for your vaccine injury claim, and to get experienced legal help filing your petition under the VICP, contact the Law Offices of Leah V. Durant, PLLC. Our firm provides nationwide legal representation for individuals with vaccine injuries. For a free, no-obligation consultation, call (202) 800-1711 or request an appointment online today.
Leah Durant Bio
Experienced litigation attorney Leah Durant focuses on representing clients in complex vaccine litigation matters. Leah Durant is the owner and principal attorney of the Law Offices of Leah V. Durant, PLLC, a litigation firm based in Washington, DC. Leah Durant is available to represent clients and their families who suffer from vaccine-related injuries, adverse vaccine reactions and vaccine-related deaths. The Law Offices of Leah V. Durant, PLLC is dedicated to assisting individuals in recovering the highest level of compensation as quickly and efficiently as possible. To learn more, contact vaccine attorney Leah Durant today.