Earlier this summer, a New Brunswick Court, in Wawanesa Mutual Insurance Company v. Johnston assessed and awarded damages to the victim of a serious car accident.
The car accident victim is a New Brunswick resident. She and her son were struck by an uninsured driver in 2006. She suffered serious physical injuries as a result of the accident. She was diagnosed with right and left wrist fractures; right pelvic fractures; right hip fractures, right and left tibia fractures and a laceration of the left scalp. She underwent several surgeries as a result of her injuries. It was also determined that she suffered a closed head injury as a result of this accident. She suffered a severe traumatic brain injury.
Lawyers commenced actions on their behalf against their insurance company to recover insurance benefits pursuant to Section D, uninsured automobile coverage of their standard policy. This protects drivers in the event they are harmed by an insured or unidentified driver.
Lawyers presented the expert opinions of the accident victim’s doctors. Among the more relevant opinions, her doctors stated:
“At the time of the motor vehicle accident of 2006, [she] was reported by her treating caregivers to be in a state of remission from psychotic symptomatology, and was, at the time, compliant with suggested treatment. Whether or not compliance would have ensued, is also moot, given her previous history of non-compliance, even when “things were going well.” Independent living for [her] would have been somewhat precarious, although possible, with close outpatient supervision prior t the accident of 2006.”
“…the motor vehicle accident of November 15, 2006 dramatically changed [her] life. …She has greatly reduced function at this point and requires supervision to ensure that she does not inadvertently harm herself. This may be the situation for the prolonged future or even for the remainder of her life. She will be unable to return to work.”
“This woman sustained severe injuries in the accident in question. She had a severe traumatic brain injury. She has been left with residua from this in the form of mental fatigue, slowing of information processing and problems with divide attention. Language is generally intact, calculating ability is intact. She has some difficulties with changes in set and maintaining set. The Wisconsin Card Storing Test showed a number of errors of failure to maintain set….
Her memory is significantly affected, both for verbal and visual information….
There are significant compromises of her functional capacity….”
The victim’s lawyers researched many cases across Canada where people were regrettably similarly severely injured. They presented the Court with results of the research to help the judge decide the appropriate quantum of damages.
After hearing the totality of the evidence and submissions, the Judge awarded this unfortunate car accident victim $200,000 for pain and suffering, $40,000 for income loss and $565,570 to contribute to her cost of future care together with her costs and disbursements.
The insurance company was ordered to pay the car accident victim a total award of $805,570.
As a result of another driver’s negligence, this lady suffered life-altering injuries. The injuries are permanent. While financial compensation will not heal her injuries, it is the way the Canadian legal system recompense injury victims. This New Brunswick lady hired personal injury lawyers. They did the necessary research and made appropriate submissions to the New Brunswick Court to guide the decision-making process. The circumstances of this case were unfortunate but it is hoped that the Court award will provide this injured lady with the means necessary to continue to treat her injuries and improve her altered lifestyle.