10 Ways to Improve Your Chances of Recovering Vaccine Injury Compensation

The National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP) provides a source of financial recovery for individuals and families affected by vaccine injuries. While the VICP is a federal government program, filing a successful VICP claim is unlike filing for benefits under more well-known programs like Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid. When filing a VICP claim, you must be able to prove your right to compensation and how much you are entitled to recover—and this makes it important to have an experienced vaccine injury attorney on your side.

What Can You Do to Improve Your Chances of Filing a Successful VICP Claim?

When you need to seek financial compensation for a vaccine injury, there are several steps you can take to maximize your chances of filing a successful VICP claim. Here are 10 ways to improve your chances of recovering vaccine injury compensation:

1. See a Doctor Promptly

Any time you have concerns about a vaccine-related injury or illness, it is important to see a doctor promptly. This is true regardless of whether you have a claim under the VICP. But, if you do have a claim under the VICP, seeing a doctor promptly will be important for protecting your health and your legal rights. You will need documentation of your diagnosis to file a VICP claim, and you will need your medical records to establish a sufficient link between your vaccination and your diagnosis.

2. Follow Your Doctor’s Advice

Once you see a doctor and obtain a diagnosis, you should follow your doctor’s advice. When you have a VICP claim, the amount you are entitled to recover is based in large part on your ongoing treatment needs and the long-term costs of your vaccine-related medical condition. If you ignore your doctor’s advice and end up incurring additional financial and non-financial costs as a result, you may not be able to recover these costs under the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program.

3. Keep Your Medical Records, Bills and Receipts

When filing a VICP claim, the more documentation you have, the better. With this in mind, you should be sure to keep your vaccination record as well as your medical records, bills and receipts. Your vaccine injury attorney will be able to obtain these from your healthcare providers if necessary, but having them readily available will make it easier to assess your legal rights.

4. Determine if You Have an “On Table” or “Off Table” Vaccine Injury

Under the VICP, injuries caused by covered vaccines can fall into one of two categories—they can either be classified as “on table” or “off table” injuries. Most common vaccine injuries are “on table” injuries, including shoulder injuries related to vaccine administration (SIRVA), brachial neuritis and Guillain-Barre Syndrome (GBS).

If your injury is “on table,” this minimizes the steps involved in filing a claim under the VICP. But, if your injury is “off table,” you will need additional evidence to file a successful claim. In either cases, knowing the steps you need to take will be important for maximizing your chances of a full financial recovery.

5. Start the VICP Claim Process Promptly

If you have a VICP claim, you will want to start the claim process promptly. Even though you have up to three years to file a claim for a non-fatal vaccine injury, you do not want to wait any longer than necessary to get started. Unnecessary delays can lead to unnecessary challenges, as they can make it more difficult to prove your legal rights in some cases.

6. Keep Any Documents You Receive from Your Employer

If you miss work as a result of a covered vaccine injury, you are entitled to financial compensation for your lost income. With this in mind, along with keeping your medical records, bills and receipts, you should also keep any documents you receive from your employer. Here, too, your vaccine injury attorney can help you track these down if necessary, but having them readily available will help streamline the process.

7. Keep a “Pain Journal”

The National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program also provides financial compensation for eligible claimants’ pain and suffering. If you have adequate documentation of your pain and suffering, you can obtain up to $250,000 in addition to the compensation you are entitled to receive for your medical expenses and lost income.

To document your pain and suffering, you will want to keep a “pain journal.” This is a place where you write down all of the ways that your vaccine injury negatively impacts your life on a daily basis. Once again, the more documentation you have, the better—so you should take the time to record your injury’s effects with as much detail as possible.

8. Be Careful to Avoid VICP Scams

Unfortunately, when you have a VICP claim, you also need to be careful to avoid scams. The U.S. Court of Federal Claims (also known as the “Vaccine Court”) has warned of several VICP scams in recent years. As a general rule, you should be wary of any unsolicited offers to assist with your VICP claim; and, when in doubt, you should contact your vaccine injury attorney.

9. Learn About the Lifetime Costs of Vaccine Injuries

One of the keys to making informed decisions when you have a VICP claim is making sure you know how much you are entitled to recover. While individual circumstances vary, vaccine injuries can prove incredibly expensive for some families. To ensure that you are seeking the maximum compensation available to you, you will want to learn about the lifetime costs of vaccine injuries.

10. Work with an Experienced Vaccine Injury Attorney

Finally, when you have a VICP claim, there is no substitute for legal representation. There are many ways that an experienced vaccine injury attorney can help you, and you can hire an attorney to handle your claim at no cost.

Request an Appointment with Vaccine Injury Attorney Leah V. Durant

If you would like to know more about how we help vaccine recipients and families with their VICP claims, we invite you to get in touch. To schedule an appointment with vaccine injury attorney Leah V. Durant, please call 202-800-1711 or request a free consultation 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 and her staff 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.