Leah Durant | Vaccine Attorney - Vaccine Blog

Wednesday, June 12, 2024

VICP vs. CICP: What You Need to Know After a Vaccine Injury

The federal government has established two separate programs that provide financial compensation to individuals and families who are coping with the effects of vaccine injuries. However, while these programs serve a similar purpose, they are different in almost every respect. If you think you may have a claim, understanding these differences is important—and this starts with understanding which specific vaccines each program covers. Vaccine injury lawyer Leah V. Durant explains:

What Vaccine Recipients and Families Need to Know About the VICP and CICP

The federal government’s two vaccine injury compensation programs are the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP) and the Countermeasures Injury Compensation Program (CICP). Each of these programs covers different vaccines; so, if you think you may have a vaccine injury claim, the specific vaccine that you (or your loved one) received will determine if your claim falls under the VICP or the CICP.

1. Vaccines Covered Under the VICP and CICP

The VICP covers most vaccines that the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommend for routine administration to adults and children in the United States. Currently, the vaccines covered under the VICP are those that protect against:

  • Diphtheria, tetanus and pertussis

  • Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib)

  • Hepatitis A and B

  • Human papillomavirus (HPV)

  • Measles, mumps and rubella

  • Meningitis

  • Pneumonia

  • Polio

  • Rotavirus

  • Seasonal flu

  • Varicella (chickenpox)

In contrast, the CICP covers injuries from vaccines that are used as countermeasures to specific public health emergencies. The most recent of these public health emergencies is the COVID-19 pandemic. Even though the national public health emergency related to the pandemic has ended and the CDC recommends the administration of the COVID-19 vaccine for most people ages six months and older, the COVID-19 vaccine, the COVID-19 vaccine still falls under the CICP instead of the VICP.

2. Claim Filing Deadlines Under the VICP and CICP

In addition to covering different vaccines, the VICP and CICP also establish different deadlines for filing vaccine injury claims. If the deadline for your claim expires, you will lose your eligibility for financial compensation—so, if you have a claim, it is extremely important that you file your claim on time.

The claim deadlines under the VICP and CICP are as follows:

  • VICP Claim Deadlines – Under the VICP, vaccine recipients have three years from the onset of symptoms (or other “manifestation of onset”) to file claims for non-fatal injuries in most cases. In cases involving fatal vaccine injuries, the deadline for filing a claim under the VICP is typically two years from the date of death.

  • CICP Claim Deadlines – Under the CICP, vaccine recipients generally only have one year to file a claim. Rather than running from the first onset of symptoms, this one-year filing period runs from the date of vaccine administration.

Regardless of how much time you have left to file, if you think you may have a claim under the VICP or CICP, it is important that you speak with a vaccine injury lawyer as soon as possible. It takes time to prepare a claim that meets all of the relevant filing requirements, and the sooner you file your claim, the sooner you can receive financial compensation for your (or your family’s) vaccine-related losses.

3. Compensation Available Under the VICP and CICP

Another key difference between the VICP and CICP is the compensation that is available. The VICP covers losses that are not covered under the CICP.

VICP Compensation

The types of compensation available to eligible claimants under the VICP include:

  • Compensation for all medical expenses incurred as a result of a vaccine injury;

  • Compensation for other out-of-pocket costs incurred as a result of a vaccine injury;

  • Compensation for loss of income, benefits and future earning capacity;

  • Up to $250,000 in compensation for pain and suffering; and,

  • Funeral, burial and other expenses in cases involving fatal vaccine injuries.

CICP Compensation

The types of compensation available to eligible claimants under the CICP include:

  • Reimbursement for medical expenses incurred for treatment of a vaccine injury that is not covered by insurance or another government program (i.e., Medicaid or Veterans Benefits);

  • Compensation for lost employment income if you are unable to work for more than five days;

  • Death benefits for eligible survivors in some cases.

Due to these differences, awards and settlements under the VICP are often significantly greater than awards paid under the CICP. While the CICP has paid about $6 million to eligible claimants to date, the VICP has awarded more than $4.6 billion to eligible claimants since its establishment in 1988.

4. Procedures for Filing VICP and CICP Claims

Determining whether your claim falls under the VICP or CICP will also determine what you need to do in order to file your claim with the government. The filing procedures under the VICP and CICP are very different, and it is critical to ensure that you meet all relevant filing requirements.

While filing a claim under the CICP involves submitting a Request for Benefits Form to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), filing a claim under the VICP involves submitting a petition to the U.S. Court of Federal Claims in Washington D.C. (this court is also known as the Vaccine Court). While the CICP Request for Benefits Form is fairly straightforward, preparing a petition under the VICP is a much more complicated process. This makes it especially important to work with an experienced vaccine injury lawyer when filing a VICP claim—and you can hire a lawyer to handle your VICP claim at no out-of-pocket cost.

Discuss Your Claim with Vaccine Injury Lawyer Leah V. Durant for Free

Do you need to know more about filing a claim for a vaccine injury with the federal government? If so, we can help, and we encourage you to contact us promptly to arrange a free, no-obligation consultation. To discuss your VICP or CICP claim with vaccine injury lawyer Leah V. Durant in confidence, please call 202-800-1711 or send us a message online today.

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