Folks that follow this Defense Base Act website know that I encourage questions. I got a really good one yesterday. Here it is:
Is there a time frame to file a dba claimed after you have ended employment? I worked as a security contractor for 3.5 years and think I suffer from a range of PTSD symptoms.
Statute of Limitations
The law calls the time frame to file a case or claim the Statute of Limitations. In other words the time limit you have to file your claim.
Now let’s back up. It seems many folks that served as overseas contractors in Iraq and Afghanistan suffer from a range of PTSD symptoms. It is all too common. I have seen it time and again. It is not uncommon for folks to suffer the affects from these wars years and years afterwards.
Your first step
The first step you should take if you feel like you may be suffering from PTSD, is to get some medical help. I've talked to many doctors about PTSD, and most feel the same way I do. I don’t like the term Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. I - along with many medical professionals believe the proper term should be Post Traumatic Stress Injury. Make no mistake about it - these aren’t “disorders” that folks have. These are injuries. Just as real as any other injury that folks had in working in war zones.
My next best advice is for folks to order a free copy of my book, Win Your Defense Base Act Case. I published the book to help folks like you with their DBA claim. This book has helped many injured overseas contractors with their case.
Check out the 5 star reviews that my book has received on Amazon.com. You can buy the book there, but I can ship it over to you completely free, I will even cover shipping.
When you can bring a DBA PTSD case?
The first thing that you need to know is that even if it has been years since you worked overseas - you are not necessarily barred from bringing a Defense Base Act Post Traumatic Stress Disorder claim. A DBA PTSD claim has a different statute of limitations than most DBA claims.
In essence, you can bring your DBA claim up to one year after you knew or should have known that you suffer an injury that was caused by your employment overseas. Typically, that is when a medical professional diagnosis you with having PTSD that was caused by your being overseas in a war zone like Iraq or Afghanistan.
However, there are exceptions to this rule. Under some circumstances you may be able to win your claim by proving that you filed within one year of when you knew that you had a wage loss based upon your PTSD injuries.
The long and short of the matter is this. If you suspect that you have Post Traumatic Stress Disorder symptoms and you worked overseas as a civilian contractor - you need to hire an honest Defense Base Act lawyer as soon as possible. The sooner that you file your claim the more likely that you will prevail.
However, even if it has been 3-4 years or even many more years since you worked overseas in a war zone, you can still successfully prevail in brining a Defense Base Act claim.
Getting to a better place
After filing your DBA claim you need to get medical help. You can get to a better place once you get the help that you need for your injuries. Time and again, I have seen folks get much better. First, getting the right treatment is key. Second, knowing that your injuries were caused by working in a war zone and winning your DBA claim is sort of validating to many folks.
There is no statute of limitations for medical treatment under the DBA
You should know that medical treatment is never time-barred under the DBA. This means that you are entitled to receive medical treatment for your injuries even if you missed the statute of limitations.
Getting the money compensation you are entitled to under the law
Finally, you are also probably entitled to money compensation under the Defense Base Act. This is based upon the law. This is for temporary total disability and permanent total disability. Under many circumstances, this can be substantial sum of money.
While I can’t guarantee any of this - because nothing in life or law is guaranteed, your first step is to file a claim and get the help that you deserve and are entitled to under the law.
Thanks again for the great question.
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