Determining if You Have a Claim for Compensation
Unfortunately, motor vehicle accidents occur every day resulting in serious physical and psychological injury and loss. There are many potential effects including: physical and psychological pain and suffering, medical treatment, financial impact from disability and/or lost employment and stress from dealing with the insurance companies. When you are injured in a car accident, you will have to immediately turn your mind to a wide variety of complex legal issues and make contact with insurance companies and treatment providers, all at a time when your injuries make you the least able to handle such issues on your own. The team of Accident & Personal Injury lawyers at BOYNECLAKE LLP understand what it means to pursue compensation for serious and critical injuries.
Specific Types of Accidents
Although we don’t like to think about it, there is a good chance that either you or someone you know will be involved in a motor vehicle accident at some point. We handle claims involving specific types of claims related to motor vehicle accidents including:
- Bicycle injury claims
- Bus and Transit Passenger injury claims
- Pedestrian injury claims
- Fatal injury claims
The Amount of Compensation You Will Receive
Some of the common types of damages typically claimed by an injured claimant are:
- Pain, suffering and loss of enjoyment of life;
- Past and future wage loss;
- Future medical care costs predicted that you will incur;
- Your out-of-pocket expenses arising out of the injury you sustained;
- Pension and other employment-related benefits you may lose;
- Value of replacing your inability to carry out housekeeping;
- Pre-judgment interest on general non-pecuniary damages and past losses;
- Aggravated damages or Punitive and Exemplary damages (in some circumstances);
- A contribution towards your legal costs.
The type and amount of damages that you can claim for are mostly dependent on the medical evidence. The Accident & Personal Injury Team at BOYNECLARKE LLP will assist you in assembling the required medical evidence and assessing your damages claim.
In Nova Scotia there may be a cap or limit on insurance benefits for general damages for pain and suffering for what are deemed as “minor injuries”. The cap does not apply to other damages such as lost income and medical expenses.
In 2010, Nova Scotia made a number of changes to the legislation, restricting the types of injuries that the provisions applied and increasing the “capped” amount, the minor injury cap is indexed to inflation. As of 2016 the minor injury cap in Nova Scotia amounts to $8,385.
After a motor vehicle accident we will work with you to get a proper assessment of your injuries. Just because your injuries are soft tissue in nature (e.g. whiplash) does not mean that your injuries are “minor” as defined in the legislation. The definition of what is “minor” is complicated. A member of the BOYNECLARKE LLP will assess how the Nova Scotia insurance caps apply to you.
How can my own insurance help pay for my immediate lost wages & medical costs?
Section B or otherwise known as no-fault benefits are benefits provided for anyone injured in a motor vehicle accident in Nova Scotia. Entitlement is regardless of fault in an accident. Benefits include payment for reasonable medical and rehabilitation expenses incurred within 4 years of the accident (sometimes beyond).
Each file is different and depending on your situation the benefits you can claim are as follows:
- Death benefits
- Funeral expenses
- Loss of income
- Medical and rehabilitation expenses
- Principal unpaid housekeeper
These benefits are usually provided by your own insurer after a motor vehicle accident where you sustained a serious injury. There are very specific requirements that must be met to qualify for the different types of benefits. It is important to speak with a lawyer to discuss how to best approach your Section B entitlements. We will ensure you take full advantage of the benefits you are entitled to and obtain compensation you need for your recovery.
Uninsured Drivers and Hit and Runs
In some circumstances where the person responsible for the car collision was uninsured or the driver fled the scene “hit and run” you will have to claim from your own insurer under Section D Uninsured and Unidentified Motorist Coverage. You are covered by an automobile policy if you are the insured, the spouse or a dependant relative. Section D claims have a maximum limit of $500,000 in the Atlantic Provinces.
There are strict rules under the Unidentified Motorist Coverage claims with respect to the steps and investigations you are required to take before recovery is permitted. The best way to determine your insurance rights is to contact us to review your claim. We offer free consultations and there are no fees unless we get you compensation for your claim.
Timing and Limitations
When you are injured in a car accident, you should not have to turn your mind to a wide variety of legal issues. However, it is important to collect evidence on your claim at the earliest opportunity because there are time frames otherwise known as limitation periods that apply to claims for compensation. A limitation period is a deadline in which you must commence a legal action by filing and having issued court documents from the appropriate court. Failure to commence an action within that time frame can result in loss of the right to claim damages.
The limitation period for claimants injured in a car accident in Nova Scotia is two years. Car accidents that result in fatal injuries have shorter limitation periods. Other provinces such as New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island have different limitation periods. Consulting with a lawyer about various limitations periods after a car accident is important.