Category: Minor Injury Cap

Is my Nova Scotia “Minor Injury” claim capped at $7500.00?

by John McKiggan

Minor Injury Cap

This is a question I get asked a lot. Some people have heard that Nova Scotia has a law that places a “cap” on the amount of compensation that people can receive if they have been injured in a car accident.

The law places a cap on the amount of compensation that you can get for what lawyers refer to as  “non-pecuniary damages”. Everybody else calls it compensation for “pain and suffering”. We explain this in more detail in my article: What is my Nova Scotia Personal Injury Claim Worth?

N.S. Court of Appeal Upholds “Minor Injury” Cap award: Awalt v. Blanchard

by John McKiggan

Almost two years ago I wrote about the trial decision in Awalt v. Blanchard: Accident Victim’s Claim Capped by Nova Scotia’s “Minor Injury” Law

Ms. Awalt was injured in a car accident in 2004. She returned to work shortly after the accident. A few years later she underwent surgery to repair a torn rotator cuff which she claimed was injured in the car accident.

The trial judge, Justice Coady found no causal connection between the shoulder injury and accident. He classified Ms. Awalt’s injuries as falling under the minor injury cap, which limited her general damages to $2,500.

Nova Scotia Announces Consumer Price Index Increase to Minor Injury Cap

by John McKiggan

This week the province of Nova Scotia announced the annual increase to Nova Scotia’s new “minor injury” cap on non-pecuniary damages in auto accidents.

In 2010 the province of Nova Scotia changed the legislation governing automobile accidents in Nova Scotia. The cap on payments for non-pecuniary damages (“pain and suffering”) for injuries that were deemed to be “minor” was increased from $2,500.00 to $7,500.00.

The new legislation required that the cap increase every year to account for the cost of living.

Nova Scotia Introduces New Insurance Reforms: Halifax Personal Injury Lawyer Explains

by John McKiggan

Today Graham Steele, the Minister responsible for Nova Scotia’s Insurance Act announced new legislation to improve automobile insurance coverage in Nova Scotia. The Fair Automobile Insurance (2011) Act, will be introduced in the legislature today.

I was part of the Review Committe that provided advice to the province regarding what improvements needed to be made to Nova Scotia’s Insurance system: McKiggan Appointed to Provincial Insurance Review Committee

Highlights of Changes

Whiplash Injuries and Nova Scotia’s “Minor Injury” Compensation Cap

by John McKiggan

Since 2003 Nova Scotia has had some form of a cap on the amount of compensation innocent accident victims are entitled to receive for their non-pecunaiary damages (what most people refer to as “pain and suffering”). For more information you can read:

Nova Scotia’s Cap on Compensation for ‘Minor Injuries’ in Car Crashes (2003 – 2010)

Although the cap has been in place now for eight years there are few reported decisions where the courts have interpreted what the definitions in the legislation actually mean. As a result, there is still debate between lawyers and insurance adjusters and defence lawyers about what injuries are “capped”.

Court of Appeal Helps Clarify Causation in Personal Injury Claims – Farrant v. Laktin

by John McKiggan

“What Caused My Injury?”

A defendant is only responsible for compensating a plaintiff for injuries caused by the defendant’s negligent conduct. Proving what injuries were, or were not, caused by the defendant’s conduct is often the biggest battle in many personal injury trials. See for example, Causation in Personal Injury Claims.

There has been some legal debate as to how the Supreme Court of Canada’s decisions in Athey v Leonati and the more recent decision of Resurfice Corp v. Hanke relate to one another.

Turning Your Head Increases Risk of Whiplash Injury

by John McKiggan

“Are Whiplash Claims Capped?”

Recent changes to Nova Scotia’s so-called “minor injury” compensation cap rate the injury using what is known as the Whiplash Associated Disorder (WAD) Scale. Compensation for non-pecuniary damages for WAD 0, WAD 1 and WAD 2 injuries are “capped” at $7,500.00.

But compensation for more severe forms of whiplash WAD 3 and WAD 4 injuries are not subject to the “minor injury” cap.

New Brunswick Car Accident Claims – Did Auto Insurers Make “Enormous” Profits By Overcharging Consumers in N.B.?

by John McKiggan

I noticed this report today and I thought I would pass it along.

New Brunswick’s Insurance Board is holding hearings investigating whether Pembridge Insurance – owned by All State Insurance, has overcharged consumers.

Paula Elliot, an actuary hired by the province to review rates charged by the insurance company, suggested Pembridge made enormous profits in New Brunswick between 2004 and 2008 and would make too much again last year unless its rates are reduced by at least 3.6 per cent and a rebate offered on the difference.

Nova Scotia Car Accident Claims – Insurance Review Recommends Improvements to NS System

by John McKiggan

The consultant hired to conduct a review of Nova Scotia’s auto insurance system has recommended improvements to help benefit consumers.

The Atlantic Provinces Trial Lawyers Association was asked to sit on the Board that reviewed the insurance legislation: McKiggan Appointed to Provincial Insurance Review Committee

My colleague Ray Wagner and I proposed a number of improvements to Nova Scotia’s insurance scheme that have been adopted and recommended to the government for implementation.

Accident Victim’s Claim Capped by Nova Scotia’s “Minor Injury” Law – Awalt v. Blanchard

by John McKiggan

The $2,500.00 cap on so called “minor injuries” that was introduced in Nova Scotia in 2003 is still having ramifications to innocent victims 7 years later.

The recent decision of Awalt v. Blanchard is a case in point.

Linda Awalt is a 52 year old personal care worker who was injured in a car accident in September 2004.

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