$80,000 Non-Pecuniary Assessment for Chronic but Tolerable Hip Injury
Adding to this site’s archived case summaries involving hip injuries, reasons for judgement were released today by the BC Supreme Court, New Westminster Registry, assessing damages of $80,000 for a chronic but tolerable hip injury.
In today’s case (Bramley v. Lee) the Plaintiff was involved in a 2009 T-bone collision. The Defendant admitted fault. The Plaintiff suffered a variety of injuries attributable to the crash, the most serious of which was a hip injury which continued to pose symptoms at the time of trial.
In assessing non-pecuniary damages at $80,000 Madam Justice Warren provided the following reasons:
 In summary, I make the following findings on causation and the current state of Mr. Bramley’s condition:
- Mr. Bramley sustained an injury to the greater trochanteric area of his right hip in the accident, which developed into trochanteric pain syndrome. He suffered from persistent, significant right hip pain until 2011, when the pain started to improve after the cortisone injection and the switch in medication to Vimovo. The hip pain continued to improve after Mr. Bramley began strengthening exercises in 2013, leaving him with lingering symptoms that he has learned to live with.
- Mr. Bramley suffered a soft tissue injury to his low back in the accident that initially resulted in significant low back pain extending into his right leg for several months, which gradually improved and ultimately resolved by early 2012.
- Mr. Bramley suffered acid reflux symptoms as a result of medications he took for his hip and low back pain, which plagued him for about a year, in 2010 to 2011, until he switched medications and began taking Vimovo.
- After the accident, the pain in Mr. Bramley’s hip began to interfere with his sleep. This became progressively worse and eventually developed into a sleep disturbance that left him fatigued by late 2009. There was no material improvement in his sleep until after the hip pain began to improve in 2011. By early 2012, Mr. Bramley’s sleep had returned to normal. Subsequently, Mr. Bramley suffered again from a significant sleep disturbance, but that was a result of sleep apnea and unrelated to the accident.
 Awards of damages in other cases provide a guideline only. Ultimately, each case turns on its own facts. However, considering the cases referred to me and, in particularMcKenzie, which was decided three years ago, and Foster, which was decided four years ago, as well as the factors discussed in Stapley, I assess Mr. Bramley’s non-pecuniary damages at $80,000.