Loss of Interdependency Claims Need to Be Specifically Plead
In British Columbia the law recognizes that a Plaintiff can be awarded damages if they have injuries which impair their opportunity to form a permanent interdependent economic relationship. Reasons for judgement were released Last week by the BC Supreme Court, Cranbrook Registry, addressing whether such a claim forms part of a diminished earning capacity claim or if it is a unique loss which needs to be specifically plead. In short the Court held such claims do indeed need to be particularized in the pleadings.
In last week’s case (Moll v. Parmar) the Plaintiff was injured in a 2006 collision. As trial neared the Plaintiff served an economist’s report advancing an interdependency claim and valuing damages for this at $200,000. The report was served outside the time permitted under the Rules of Court. The Defendant objected to the report’s admissibility due to its late service and further due to the fact that an interdependency claim was not specifically plead. Mr Justice Abrioux held that the report would not be admitted in these circumstances and ordered an adjournment to address the concerns raised. In concluding that an interdependency claims need to be specifically plead the Court provided the following reasons:
 The issue before me, being whether the interdependency claim had to be specifically pled, was not before the Court of Appeal in Anderson. I have concluded that while an interdependency claim is “closely connected” to one for loss of earning capacity, it is nonetheless a separate head of damages. It should be specifically pled and accompanied, pursuant to the Supreme Court Civil Rules, R. 3-1(2)(a), by a concise statement of the material facts giving rise to the claim.
 Accordingly, if the plaintiff seeks to advance this claim, he is required to amend his statement of claim. Absent the defendant’s consent, he will have to apply to do so. There is no draft amended notice of civil claim before me and, accordingly, I am not in a position to deal with a proposed amended pleading at this time.