$95,000 Non-Pecuniary Assessment For Chronic Wrist and Thumb Injury
Reasons for judgement were released today by the BC Supreme Court, Vancouver Registry, assessing damages for a chronic hand injury caused by a vehicle collision.
In today’s case (Burke v. Schwetje) the Plaintiff was involved in a 2010 collision caused by the Defendant. The Defendant admitted fault. The collision caused a hand and thumb injury resulting in permanent partial disability. The Plaintiff did, however, have a number of pre-existing issues which likely would have led to some overlapping disability described as “a number of quiescent but present conditions in his hands and wrists that would likely have become increasingly symptomatic over time in any event of the Collision.”
In assessing non-pecuniary damages at $95,000 Madam Justice Russell provided the following reasons:
 I am aware that the plaintiff has not been able to continue as a commercial fisherman since 2013 and before that, had some serious functional limitations on his abilities. His culture, his friendships and his livelihood have all changed substantially since the Collision and because of the Collision.
 The plaintiff’s right wrist symptoms were aggravated significantly by the Collision and he has had continuing pain in his thumb and his wrist for which he takes OTC medications and may choose to have one or possibly two surgeries.
 As a man of 67 at the time of the Collision, his career has been shortened by the aggravation of his previously only mildly symptomatic arthritis.
 Given the agreement of the defendants with the quantum of non-pecuniary damages which the plaintiff seeks and my finding that that amount is appropriate in the circumstances, I award him $95,000.
 The award of damages under this head includes an amount for loss of housekeeping or gardening capacity