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How much is my car accident or slip and fall case worth?

July 5, 2012 - in Advice, Car Accident, Slip and Fall

That is a difficult question to answer. Ontario’s car accident system is a lot different than some others like Quebec’s. In Ontario there is no fixed amount for a particular injury.

There are cases that lawyers and others can look to in order to determine a case’s fair value. However, the exact amount that the case is worth is based on individual factors. For example, if Wayne Gretzky (former professional hockey player) sustained a serious wrist fracture during the height of his career, the case would probably be worth more than if most lawyers suffered the same injury. Other things that might have an influence on the amount would be the amount of pain and disability that the injury causes, the injured person’s age and any other factors that tend to make the injury and its effects worse.

It should also be remembered that, in Canada, there is a cap on the pain and suffering components of awards. The cap was subject to inflation when it was introduced by the Supreme Court in a trilogy of cases in the 1970’s. In 2011 it is between approximately $320,000 and $340,000. Remember that this means that a person that sustains the worst possible injuries is limited to claiming that amount for pain and suffering. One rationale for the cap could be that no amount of money can ever truly compensate someone for a severe injury.

Of course, that does not mean that is the maximum total amount that they can claim. An injured person can also claim, in many cases, for other types of damages, including loss of income/loss of competitive advantage, future care costs, etc. These are not subject to a cap in most cases.

In car accident cases, there are thresholds, deductibles and other limits. However, in car accident cases, there is also the possibility of obtaining compensation and settlement through the accident benefits system.