This motor vehicle accident personal injury case required the Supreme Court to put a value on the pain and suffering for an eight year old boy with severe facial scarring and soft tissue injury. Tragically, his mother and his twin brother were killed, and his significant facial scarring had required him to endure numerous uncomfortable surgeries to reduce their visibility, without complete success(2014 BCSC 1539). The injury claimant’s mother was driving at the time of the accident and the claimant was 21 years old at the time of trial.
After making a left turn from 72nd Avenue on to 152nd Street in Surrey the Claimant’s mother immediately attempted to change from the left to the right lane on 152nd Street . She clipped a vehicle vehicle lost control, crossed the raised median and entered the oncoming lane resulting in a serious collision with a vehicle that was proceeding in the opposite direction.
The claimant suffered injuries to his right leg as well as to his shoulders and neck. He made a good recovery from these injuries although he could not play sports competitively and could not take physical education class until Grade 10.
The injuries to his face from the accident were much more serious than the whiplash or leg injury. Multiple pieces of glass were embedded in his face and he has scarring to much of the left side. The most significant scars run down from his mouth and along his jawline, from the side of his nose into his upper cheek area, and from the side of his nose up towards his left eye.
It was not clear in the decision whether ICBC required any deduction be made for past rehabilitation expenses or other benefits paid by ICBC to date. As a general rule all amounts paid by ICBC to the date of trial must be deducted from the award.
The factors that most influenced the award for pain, suffering and loss of enjoyment of life were his age, the nature of his injuries, the severity and duration of his pain, his emotional suffering, the impairment of his social relationships, and his stoicism.
The Court awarded the following:
|Pain and Suffering:||$100,000.00|
|Loss of Future Earning Capacity:||$104,500.00|
|Out of Pocket Expenses:||$843.75|
|Cost of Future Care:||$11,150.00|
ISSUE: Should permanent facial scarring be worth more than $100,000? ( Have your say and make a comment!)