Under the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP), individuals who have been diagnosed with vaccine-related injuries can recover financial compensation for their out-of-pocket costs, loss of income, and pain and suffering. In many cases, compensation for pain and suffering will make up the largest portion of a claimant’s award. However, recovering compensation for pain and suffering is not easy, and placing an appropriate dollar value on your pain and suffering requires the help of an experienced vaccine injury attorney.
Understanding Your Claim for Pain and Suffering Under the VICP
In order to understand your claim for pain and suffering, it is first important to understand the nature of the VICP. While the VICP is a federal government program, it is entirely unlike the programs with which most people are familiar. Whereas programs like Social Security disability (SSD) and supplemental security income (SSI) pay benefits to those who qualify based on set schedules, the VICP pays compensation based on eligible claimants’ actual losses. As a result, your VICP claim is entirely unique to you, and you must prove your losses in order to collect the compensation you deserve.
Placing a Dollar Value on Your Pain and Suffering
So, how do you calculate just compensation for your pain and suffering? Unlike your out-of-pocket costs and lost wages, you cannot simply “add up” your pain and suffering. Instead, you must place an appropriate dollar value on the intangible effects of your vaccine injury. When calculating just compensation for pain and suffering from a vaccine injury, relevant factors include:
- The severity of your injury
- The duration of your recovery
- Whether your vaccine injury will have long-term or permanent effects
- Your daily pain levels
- The impacts of your vaccine injury on your daily life
- The impacts of your vaccine injury on your relationships with friends and family
Proving Your Pain and Suffering
There are a number of ways that claimants can prove their pain and suffering when seeking financial compensation under the VICP. Medical records are helpful (and indispensable when filing a VICP claim), but they do not tell the whole story. Statements from friends and loved ones, records of events missed, daily journal entries, and various other forms of evidence can all be used to paint a picture of the intangible effects of a life-altering vaccine injury.
The Cap on Pain and Suffering Damages Under the VICP
While eligible claimants can seek full compensation for their out-of-pocket costs and lost income regardless of the total losses they have incurred (and will incur in the future), the VICP places a cap on damages for pain and suffering. This cap is $250,000.
Talk to a Vaccine Injury Attorney about Your Claim for Pain and Suffering Under the VICP
If you would like to know more about seeking financial compensation for your pain and suffering under the VICP, we encourage you to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation. To speak with national vaccine injury attorney Leah V. Durant in confidence, call 202-800-1711 or tell us how we can reach you online now.
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.