Federal Tort Claims/Title 38 U.S.C. 1151 Also known as FTCA and Section 1151 Claims

Glover Luck Handles Federal tort Claims and 1151

Every year, millions of veterans receive medical care at VA hospitals and nursing facilities, federally funded clinics, and military bases. When something goes wrong and the veteran suffers an injury or death due to the negligence of a federal employee, the veteran or his/her spouse may pursue claims under the Federal Tort Claims Act (FTCA) or Title 38 U.S.C. §1151 (section 1151).

While both claims can be pursued simultaneously, it is important to know the procedural nuisances, evidentiary requirements, statute of limitations, and potential benefits of each claim. Consulting with one of our knowledgeable and experienced attorneys can help you navigate these complex systems.

The FTCA also covers injuries in federal buildings and national parks and automobile accidents with governmental employees. If you believe you have been injured by a federal agency or employee, let us help you determine whether you can sue the federal government under the FTCA and navigate your claim through the complex legal process.

In 1946, The Federal Tort Claims Act gave American citizens the right to sue the federal government for the first time.

Under the Federal Tort Claims Act (FTCA) the United States is liable for money damages for injury, loss of property, personal injury, or death, in the same manner and to the same extent as a private individual under the same circumstances. This includes any negligent or wrongful act or omission of any governmental employee while in the scope of his/her employment but most commonly involves medical malpractice such as:

  • Misdiagnosis
  • Surgical mistakes
  • Failure to diagnose cancer, stroke, or heart attack
  • Birth injury suffered by newborns or their mothers
  • Preventable complications of common diseases

The FTCA also covers injuries in federal buildings and national parks and automobile accidents with governmental employees. If you believe you have been injured by a federal agency or employee, let us help you determine whether you can sue the federal government under the FTCA and navigate your claim through the complex legal process.

The first step in a federal tort claim is the filing of an administrative claim using Standard Form 95 (SF 95) with the administration that allegedly committed the negligent or wrongful act or omission. For example, in cases involving medical malpractice at a VA facility a claimant would file the administrative claim at his/her VA Regional Office. Generally, the administrative claim must be filed within two years of the veteran’s injury or death but there are some exceptions.

Once the administrative claim is filed, the VA has six months to respond by granting the claim, entering into negotiations for a settlement, or expressly denying the claim. However, the VA can, and often does, take longer than six months to respond which is considered an implied denial. In that situation the claimant can either wait for the VA to respond or proceed in federal district court.

If the administrative claim is denied, the claimant has six months to file suit in federal district court. Failure to meet any deadline in an FTCA claim may bar relief so it is important to consult with an attorney as soon as possible. Additionally, damages are limited to the amount stated in the plaintiff’s administrative claim unless there is newly discovered evidence that was not reasonably discoverable at the time the administrative claim was filed. Therefore, it is equally as important to consult with an attorney regarding the amount and type of damages so as to not undercut your recovery.

Initiating a FTCA claim is stressful, challenging, and full of pitfalls that can quickly destroy any chance of recovery. If you believe that you or a loved one may have a valid federal tort claim contact us immediately at 844-244-VETS (8387) or 214-741-2005 for a free case evaluation. We will gladly review the details of the case discuss the best course of action. Our firm is based in Dallas, Texas, and can handle FTCA claims anywhere.

In addition to an FTCA claim, a veteran or his/her surviving spouse may receive monthly benefits under Title 38, section 1151 of the United States Code if the veteran’s disability or death was caused by VA medical malpractice. This includes malpractice related to hospital care, medical or surgical treatment, or examination furnished to the veteran in a VA facility or in a facility providing such services on behalf of the VA.

Section 1151 awards compensation for an additional disability or death in the same manner as if such additional disability or death were “service-connected”. The monthly compensation for a service-connected disability is federal and state tax-free and varies with the degree of disability, ranging from 0 to 100 percent. To be successful, the claimant must show that the veteran’s disability or death was the result of carelessness, negligence, lack of proper skill, error in judgment, or similar instance of fault on the part of VA. Alternatively, that claimant can show that the disability or death was an event that was not reasonably foreseeable (i.e. a reasonable health care provider could not have foreseen the disability or death).

A veteran or surviving spouse can initiate a section 1151 claim by filling out an application online through eBenefits or by contacting his/her VA Regional Office. There is no statute of limitations that will bar recovery under a section 1151 claim, but a claimant only has one year to appeal the denial of the claim before the denial becomes final. If the one year appeal window has passed, the VA will not be reopen the claim without new and material evidence. If you or a loved one has a section 1151 claim that has been denied, contact us immediately at 844-244-VETS (8387) or 214-741-2005 for a free case evaluation. We will gladly review the details of the case discuss to determine the best course of action available to you. Our firm is based in Dallas, Texas and can handle section 1151 claims anywhere.

If you or a loved one may have a federal tort claim or section 1151 claim that has been denied, contact our veterans law office immediately at 844-244-VETS (8387) or 214-741-2005 for a free case evaluation. We are based in Dallas, Texas, but represent veterans all over the United States.

Contact Us

  • GloverLuck, LLP
  • Veterans Law Attorneys
  • 1910 Pacific Ave., Suite 13300
  • Dallas Texas 75201

Types of Claims We Handle

  • Unemployability (TDIU)
  • Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
  • Psychiatric Disability
  • Agent Orange Exposure
  • Gulf War Syndrome
  • Death Benefits
  • Accrued Benefits Claims
  • Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)
  • Mental Health Disorders
  • Medical Malpractice

Nova Representing Veterans

www.vetadvocates.org
"Providing Training For Those Who Represent America’s Veterans and Their Dependents Since 1993"

Julie L. Glover
Sustaining Member since 2011


Adam R. Luck
Sustaining Member since 2014
GloverLuck LLP Veterans Law Attorneys