This whiplash claimant was awarded $110,000 for pain and suffering despite an ICBC assessment of $5,000. Insurance Corporation of British Columbia, ICBC, was the insurer of the guilty driver. The claimant was a passenger in a car that was rear ended. The defendants’ vehicle sustained no damage. There was minor damage to the claimant’s vehicle. (Brooks v. Habib, 2019 BCSC 1398 )

The claimant resided in California and his expenses were in United States dollars. Therefore, the damages of $14,600 awarded for cost of future care and $166,210.05 in special damages were stated in US dollars. The amount payable under the order was the amount of Canadian currency necessary to purchase the equivalent amounts, pursuant to the Foreign Money Claims Act.

When awarding $110,000 for pain and suffering in this ICBC personal injury claim the judge had this the say,

[320] I find that overall, Mr. B has made a genuine attempt to minimize the impact of his injuries on his lifestyle. As the Court observed in Jones v. Arjun, 2013 BCSC 1313 at para. 177, enduring pain, even when it is intermittent and fluctuates in intensity, casts “a negative spin on everyday living and detracts from the pleasures of life”.

[321] I have considered all the authorities cited by counsel. In light of my findings, the cases submitted by the defendants fall far short of the appropriate range of damages in this case. While the authorities defended by Mr. Bs’ counsel are instructive, I do not propose to review them in detail, as each case turns on its own unique facts. Overall, I find that the plaintiffs in those authorities suffered more severe consequences from their injuries than Mr. B. Although I have concluded that the evidence does not establish a material risk that, absent the First Accident Mr. B would have become as symptomatic as he did, in assessing the quantum of Mr. Bs’ damages, I must keep in mind that his pre-existing symptoms associated with his sedentary employment were part of who he was before the First Accident.

[322]  Considering the governing principles in the authorities and Mr. Bs’ particular circumstances, I conclude a fair and reasonable award for non‑pecuniary damages is $110,000

Factors for Valuing a Personal Injury Case

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