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Defense Base Act Resources

Many, many articles about Defense Base Act Resources. Created in 1941, the Defense Base Act law provides medical coverage, compensation, and the right to choose your own doctor. The DBA covers those who work overseas as civilian contractors for private employers Department of Defense firms working on foreign military bases for the U.S. government, or who work on contracts approved and funded by the U.S. Government. Anyone injured on the job and who is denied medical care has the right to an attorney who is paid by the insurer or the employer, not by the individual. Garfinkel Schwartz has provided civilian contractors with DBA defense help since 1976.

Where the U.S. Military May Be in 2016

Currently, Garfinkel Schwartz has many clients from all over Kuwait, Afghanistan, and Iraq. There are men and women who have worked in Turkey, in Kosovo, Syria, Africa, South America, Central America, Europe, Russia, the United States.

Based on the many wars, problems and military needs as of January 4, 2016, there will be more people who are hurt working for the U.S. government as sub-contractors, civilian contractors. Here is a look at the predicted military problems that could require U.S. troops or military or Department of Defense staff.


Our Clients Are the Heroes of 2015

Even if I’m in three feet of snow it really doesn’t make much difference when I’m with clients in person so I can understand just what they’re going through and what their household is going through as a result of the insurance companies failing to deliver which is what I’m here for to make sure the insurance companies give you what you deserve.


No Risk Attorney Fees

We get checks completely separately to our law firm for our hourly rate times the number of hours we spent. All of our attorney fees have to be approved by the Department of Labor. There’s a form–a retainer form–that I cannot change and that’s a form drafted by the Department of Labor.


We Travel to You Where You Live

We mention on our website that we do come to you and we meet you in person whenever we get a chance to. And we’ll always be there for depositions and major times that your case has to be adjudicated.
We want to see you in your home, where it’s comfortable for you and where you’re recovering and healing.


We Advance Medical Evaluation Costs

what our firm does which is, “We Advance Medical Evaluation Costs,” so that we can assess your case and you know what’s wrong with you. At Garfinkel Schwartz we advance medical evaluation costs for clients who need to show medical issues are real and need short and or longterm care.

You have to understand exactly what your medical condition is: is it permanent, can you recover, how long will it take to get well? What kind of surgery do you need? Medical long-term and short-term recovery plan, rehabilitation, everything you need to recover and take care of yourself and your family.


DBA Law Covers Contractors Around World

Garfinkel Schwartz. Brian talked recently with a journalist and explained that the DBA Law Covers Contractors Around the World.

Brian shared some alarming information after receiving a call from overseas which Garfinkel Schwartz often does. Garfinkel Schwartz helps people around the world receive their benefits from the Defense Base Act law and Brian thanks for talking with me today.

Complex Chain of Employers
Brian explains who is hiring whom regarding contractors overseas. If we would start at the top it’s the United States Department of Defense. And they go and they hire subcontractors and contractors, companies from the United States, Europe, India, from Asia, from Africa, South America, Central America.

It’s those contractors–civilian contractors or military contractors–who are sometimes called Subs. They have to go and then find staffing to go and work in these war zones including Iraq and Afghanistan.

When they are hiring people they’re hiring people to do manual labor and technical jobs they need working on U.S. military bases or for the military in various capacities. Whether it’s providing food service, water, transportation. They could be working on the weaponry. They could be building and constructing in Iraq or Afghanistan.

Deaths or Injuries between 2004 to 2011

Most of the clients that I talk to or potential clients that I talk to that have family who have been injured or killed. The biggest conflict arose between say 2004 and 2011 and then the troops withdrew from Iraq in 2011.
That doesn’t mean that the contractors did anything wrong. See these things happen on a daily basis. I had a call come in from a person who was injured last week and in Afghanistan and they came back and they called.

So it’s sort of a step away from the contractor and the U.S. Government. And if I’m a mother and I’ve lost my son who was in Turkey, who was hired by a subcontractor to go to Iraq or Afghanistan.

And that subcontractor let’s say he or she is from Ireland or from the Philippines or from Africa, there’s a disconnect from the U.S. Government. And how would they know how to find who’s responsible for their son’s death? They just know that their son has died.

One Year Statute of Limitations

And that’s what’s happening and the good part about the law is that there is a normal statute of limitations. That you know if a person dies or you’re injured severely and you know you can’t work, there’s a one-year statute of limitations that applies if you don’t notify the Department of Labor by that time your barred.

Claim Should Be Timely

However there’s a presumption in the law that that your claim is timely. From the point when you knew that you actually had or you should have known that you had actually had benefits under this law.

And if the employer does not report it to the Department of Labor within one year and the employer doesn’t explain what the situation is: that you may have rights under American law, many judges will make that leap and say this person should not be held to this limitation because there’s no way to get there have actually found out about this until recently. And that the employers and the insurance companies have a duty to notify people of a death under their watch including all subcontractors. And they don’t always do it.

So to be clear: we’re not pointing fingers. I mean this is a war. There is going to be losses and that’s a horrible thing, but we’re not saying that there is necessarily a deception. But that there is a whole group of people who are not being compensated and cared for after serving the needs of a larger group who’s fighting a war.

Sharing DBA Law With Contractors

I wouldn’t say it’s a decision necessarily. It’s just there’s no mechanism in place overseas that forces a subcontractor to tell an injured person or a dead person’s family what their rights are under the Defense Base Act.

There’s no mechanism in place that forces them to do that other than they’re supposed to file a claim within one year when they find out about a death. They don’t always do that.

Subcontractors Don’t Always Know About DBA Laws

So it’s more it’s more an act of silence. It’s simply a subcontractor may not even know if the general contractor doesn’t tell them. I mean these other foreign companies may not even know to tell the people their rights.

So it may not be deception it maybe it’s complete ignorance. But whatever it is these, people are covered under this law and they don’t know about it and they’ll never find out about it unless it’s someone like me or someone that’s interested.


Third Country Nationals DBA Rights

The United States Department of Defense and they go and they hire subcontractors or contractors companies from the United States, Europe, India, from Asia, from Africa, Central America.

It’s those contractors who are sometimes called subs. The sub-contractors have to go on then and find staffing to go and work in these war zones including Iraq and Afghanistan.

When they are hiring people they’re hiring people to do manual labor and technical jobs. They may be working on U.S. military bases or for the military in various capacities.


We Fight Employers and Insurance Companies

We’re here to fight for you. You might be sick, you could be injured, you could be in the hospital. Your family wants you to heal. We want you to heal and get better. You have to take care of yourself and we’ll fight your employers or your insurance companies.


Injured Civilian Contractors Get to Pick Doctors

Injured Civilian Contractors Get to Pick Doctors if they get an LS-1 form that they fill out asking for the doctors of their choice under the Defense Base Act law. This is a message for people asking them to plan ahead now before they are injured civilian contractors overseas. The LS-1 Form means that you get your doctor, you get to choose who you’ll see if you’re hurt.


Before You Leave Find First Choice Doctor

Hi this is Brian Wiklendt. I’m lead counsel at Garfinkel Schwartz. And I’m coming to you today from our Maitland Florida offices, we also have offices on the Space Coast of Florida which is in Cocoa Beach. Today I’m going to talk to you about finding a First Choice Doctor if you are going overseas […]


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