As the automotive industry attempts to address this regulatory snarl, the liability issue for vaccines shows that it’s possible to find a workable solution to protect a lifesaving technology.
With the development of the vaccine court, pharmaceutical companies no longer were liable for the vaccines they produced. Instead, claims could be filed against the Department of Health and Human Services, and a panel of three — later to be expanded to eight — judges, referred to as “special masters,” would decide the legitimacy of the case.
An excise tax on vaccines provides the money for damages and legal fees, which the government pays regardless of the case’s outcome. Awards are capped at $250,000.