This personal injury claimant was found 50% at fault for a car accident. The issue on this court application was whether the claimant should also recover only 50% of his legal costs.(Elima v. Dhaliwal,2018 BCSC 115).

This personal injury lawsuit relates to a a motor vehicle accident which occurred at the intersection of Steveston Highway and Coppersmith Place in Richmond, BC. Read my review of this left hand turn injury case trial decision. As the judge stated in deciding the application:

[18]  In Moses v. Kim, 2007 BCSC 1820, Madam Justice Gray, at para. 13, established a series of factors that are often considered in determining whether the court should exercise the discretion that it is allowed under s. 3(1):

a.     the seriousness of the plaintiff’s injuries;

b.     the difficulties facing the plaintiff in establishing liability;

c.     the fact that in settlement negotiations the amount offered was substantially below the ultimate amount;

d.     whether the plaintiff was forced to go to trial to obtain recovery;

e.     the costs of going to trial;

f.      the difficulty and length of the trial;

g.     whether the costs recovery available to the plaintiff, if costs are apportioned according to liability, will bear any reasonable relationship to the party’s costs in obtaining the results achieved;

h.     the positions taken by the parties at trial, in particular whether the positions taken were appropriate and reasonable in the circumstances;

i.       whether the defendants made any settlement offers;

j.       the ultimate result of the trial; and

k.     whether the plaintiff achieved substantial success that would effectively be defeated if costs were awarded pursuant to section 3(1) of the Negligence Act.

The Supreme Court Judge was satisfied that  it was appropriate to follow the prima facie rule of apportioning costs in relation to liability in accordance with s. 3(1) of Act and that no injustice would arise as a result. As a result the claimant would only be entitled to recover fifty percent of the legal costs and disbursements.

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

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