NB Doctor Says “Minor Injury” Cap Definition Misleading

by John McKiggan

Pain Specialist Concerned About Minor Injury Cap

Dr. Richard Dumais is a pain specialist working at the Dr. Georges L Dumont Pain Clinic in Moncton New Brunswick. Today he voiced his concerns on the broadness of New Brunswick’s definition of a “minor injury” under the provinces car insurance laws that caps compensation for pain and suffering.

According to Dr. Dumais:

“The label “minor injury” under the cap is misleading and appears to have had no meaningful input from physicians and the medical community,”

“Some people involved in motor vehicle accidents have residual injuries that are severe from a medical standpoint but may be considered minor injuries by the insurance cap”,

“From my practice, I have seen patients who were categorized as having ‘minor injuries’ who are experiencing long-term pain.” I feel the current system has to be modified to make it fair for those who are truly injured beyond what could be called ‘minor’.”

Consumer’s Group Opposes Cap

In August, the newly formed N.B. Consumers for Insurance Fairness Group (NBCIF) launched a campaign to inform the public about the real consequences of the so-called “minor injury” cap.

Frances McConnachie, spokesperson for NBCIF said:

“In 2003, New Brunswickers were told by the government that a cap would be placed on soft tissue injuries which were non-permanent in nature”,

“The current regulations are far-reaching and broader than it was intended by the government. People with injuries and conditions such as epilepsy, chronic pain, bulging discs, spasms, broken and crushed bones could all fall under the cap”.

Changes Recommended by N.B. Consumer Advocate and Insurance Brokers

The New Brunswick Consumer Advocate for Insurance and the Insurance Brokers Association of New Brunswick have recommended the government change the definition of “minor injury”.

Call To Action

The NB Consumers for Insurance Fairness have called upon accident victims to join them via their Facebook Group or through their website: www.fairautonb.ca
Changes Overdue in New Brunswick

In April of this year, the newly elected NDP government increased the so-called “minor injury” cap on compensation. The NDP also made changes to Nova Scotia’s insurance act to limit the number of innocent accident victims whose claims will be unfairly capped by the “minor injury” definition.

The changes are a huge step in the right direction and it is time that New Brunswick takes the same steps to protect the rights of innocent accident victims. It’s time to “scrap the cap”.

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