This car accident personal injury claim occurred at  92nd Avenue in Surrey,(Narain v. Gill,2012 BCSC 848) British Columbia when the claimant was hit head on by a minvan. The Insurance Corporation of British Columbia (“ICBC”) did not admit fault, but liability was not contested, and the judge found that the other driver was negligent and caused the accident.
When assessing the reliability of the injury claimant’s evidence with respect to her claim for pain and suffering the judge observed,

[39]  One of the universal difficulties in assessing or quantifying pain and the consequent effect on enjoyment of life is the subjective nature of pain. As Dr. Anton pointed out in his first report, it is not possible to objectively quantify disability due to pain. Doctors generally accept the self-reporting of their patients as factual. The court must assess the reliability of the plaintiff’s testimony in the context of the adversarial process, where testimonial reliability is questioned, sometimes with vigour, as in this case. The universal difficulty with assessing the effects of a plaintiff’s pain is compounded in this case, because the issue involves comparing Ms. Narain’s pain levels and disabilities pre-existing the subject accident to pain levels and disabilities following the accident, based on her self-reporting in the past and at present, overlaid with pre-existing and ongoing depression.

The Court did not accept ICBC’s argument that the claimant  had fully recovered to her pre-accident state of health and that her capacity to earn income was undiminished. Nor did the Judge accept the award suggested by the claimant as being fair and reasonable. The judge stated at paragraph 68, “There is a reasonable prospect of full recovery to pre-accident status with the appropriate interventions and therapies, but there is a real and substantial possibility that her pain symptoms will not fully abate to that point. In the latter event, I find that the plaintiff will suffer an impairment of her earning capacity in one or more of the ways described in Brown v. Golaiy, [1985] B.C.J. No. 31.”

The Surrey injury claimant was awarded the following:

Pain and Suffering: $50,000.00
Past wage loss: $18,225.00
Loss of future earning capacity: $30,000.00
Loss of housekeeping capacity: $5,000.00
Cost of future care: $10,225.34
Out of Pocket expenses: $3,284.73
TOTAL: $116,735.07

 Posted by Personal Injury Lawyer Mr. Renn A. Holness B.A., LL.B.

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