News

The Cedillo Appeal – Mary Holland is a "Friend" to the Court and Autism Community

The autism community owes a great debt of thanks to attorney Mary Holland for putting together her excellent amici curiae (friend of the court) brief in the Cedillo appeal. Ms. Holland was surprised to find there had never been an amicus brief in a vaccine case before the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit and was delighted with the 23 autism organizations who supported the brief. She hopes that future issues concerning our community will generate a similar level of support.

Posted on: February 09, 2011

Cedillo vs. Secretary of Health and Human Services Highlights Failure of the Vaccine Injury Compensation Program

The Elizabeth Birt Center for Autism Law and Advocacy (EBCALA) is deeply disappointed in the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit’s decision to affirm Cedillo v. Secretary of Health and Human Services. EBCALA submitted a friend-of-the-court brief on behalf of 23 civil society organizations in January 2010 urging the Court of Appeals to reverse. In affirming the decision, the Court of Appeals failed to do justice by Michelle Cedillo and thousands of other petitioners in the Omnibus Autism Proceeding (OAP).

Posted on: August 30, 2010

Thimerosal Goes to Court: American Home Products Corp. v. Ferrari

Until now, most civil courts have shut their doors to claims that thimerosal contributed to autism. Both federal and state courts have rejected these claims, deciding that only “vaccine court,” the no-fault compensation program under the Federal Court of Claims, may hear them. Four courts have decided previously that the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Act of 1986 preempts, or displaces, all state law product liability claims against vaccine manufacturers. These prior decisions concluded that Congress intended that regular civil courts could not hear vaccine-related cases that plaintiffs brought on tort law theories of strict liability and negligence.

Posted on: July 22, 2010

In Support of Assembly Bill A6888B Expanding Insurance Coverage for ASD And In Opposition to S7000/A10372A

We urge enactment of legislation that will prohibit discrimination in insurance coverage for individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder (“ASD”). We urge the legislature to stop unfair insurance coverage practices that deprive necessary health care for individuals with ASD. As legal practitioners who work closely with families affected by autism – or have affected children – we have all too often observed that insurers have worked to deny coverage for basic interventions that would make a real difference for individuals with autism. We applaud legislators in New York for taking a close look at the autism insurance coverage issue.

Posted on: June 21, 2010

The Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP): What Lawyers, Medical Personnel, & Parents Need to Know

This unique program is geared to attorneys, parents, educators, and advocates will provide an essential overview of the Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP) and federal Vaccine Court.

Posted on: April 14, 2010

EBCALA Objects to Media Reports Tainting Autism Doctors and Misrepresenting Autism Treatments

Media outlets, including ABC News, Chicago Tribune and Forbes.com are not accurately covering and reporting on biomedical treatments for autism. EBCALA strongly objects to the bias and inaccuracy reflected in the coverage by ABC News, the Chicago Tribune and Forbes.com.

Posted on: March 12, 2010

The Supreme Court Takes Bruesewitz v. Wyeth: Is There Justice for Vaccine Injury Victims?

On March 8, the Supreme Court voted to hear Bruesewitz v. Wyeth, an appeal from the Third Circuit Court of Appeals.  The Supreme Court will decide whether a vaccine-injured child has the right to pursue a traditional "design defect" claim under state tort law when "Vaccine Court" refuses compensation.  The Supreme Court must interpret the 1986 National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act and decide whether Congress intended to "preempt" all industry tort liability when it wrote, “No vaccine manufacturer shall be liable…if the injury or death resulted from side effects that were unavoidable even though the vaccine was properly prepared and was accompanied by proper directions and warnings.”

Posted on: March 04, 2010

Autism Organizations Unite in Brief to U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit in Cedillo

Twenty-three organizations sent a formidable message to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit: enforce the law for vaccine injury compensation or acknowledge that this system is irrevocably broken. Last week, these organizations filed an amicus curiae brief, or friend-of-the-court brief, in the case Theresa Cedillo, et al. v. Secretary of Health and […]

Posted on: February 05, 2010

Autism Omnibus Proceedings FAQs

I will be posting summaries of the thimerosal-autism test cases starting May 12. Below, I provide some answers and links that may be helpful in understanding this unusual proceeding.  My goal is to provide short, objective summaries of testimony every day for those people who do not have the time or inclination to listen to the hearings. 

Posted on: May 12, 2008