In this personal injury case a very competent young lawyer was  tragically rendered less capable overall from earning income from all types of employment due to a falling injury resulting in brain injury. She was awarded $5.1 for her loss of earning capacity (click here for full case 2010 BCSC 1111).

The judge found that it was highly likely that she would have stayed in the workforce and achieved a substantial income as a rainmaker and successful commercial lawyer. In fact she was described by another lawyer as the best lawyer you’ve seen at working the room.

What is a rainmaker?  A legal recruiter, testified that in the job market the most coveted skill in a lawyer was the ability to be a rainmaker and he provided the following definition of that term:

Q         Can you explain to His Lordship in your mind what a rainmaker is.

A          I mean, I think in a nutshell a rainmaker is viewed as somebody who brings in more work to the law firm than they are able to do themselves, and they would be somebody who have, you know, generally strong social skills, good relationships with their clients. Usually you don’t get to be there without also having, you know, a good work ethic and being good as a lawyer.

The judge accepted that such lawyers are, on a relative basis, paid more than other lawyers for their skill at bringing in clients to the law firm. The claimant was effective at bringing new clients into the firm.

The four considerations listed in Brown v. Golaiy were all present here: the claimant was rendered less capable overall from earning income from all types of employment; is less marketable or attractive;lost the opportunity of taking advantage of all job opportunities which might otherwise have been available to her; and was less valuable to herself as a person capable of earning income.

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

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