On July 14, 2010, in Moreno v. U.S., the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit affirmed a Pennsylvania District Court decision that federal prisoner Moreno was not entitled to relief under the Federal Tort Claims Act (FTCA), 28 U.S.C. Section 2674, for allegedly inadequate medical care by a government contractor that resulted in blindness in one eye.

Under the FTCA, the United States is liable for torts like a private person would be. Federal prisoners may recover damages from the government for injuries sustained in prison as a result of negligence by government employees. However, the United States government is not liable under FTCA for actions by independent contractors. The question is whether the government has the power to “control the detailed physical performance of the contractor”.

Contact government contracts attorney Karen Hindson for your government contract law issue.