Reasons for judgement were published today by the BC Supreme Court, Vancouver Registry, assessing damages for a complex wrist injury with chronic limitations.
In today’s case (Sarginson v. Nordquist) the Plaintiff was involved in a 2014 collision. The Defendant was liable. The crash resulted in a complicated wrist injury which, despite undergoing several surgeries, did not fully recover and was left with ‘significant derangement’. Additionally there were some soft tissue injuries and some related psychological injury. In assessing non-pecuniary damages at $125,000 Madam Justice Winteringham provided the following reasons:
Reasons for judgement were published today by the BC Supreme Court, Vancouver Registry, assessing damages for permanent partly disabling injuries sustained in a vehicle collision.
In today’s case the Plaintiff was involved in a 2014 rear end collision. Fault was admitted by the Defendant. The Plaintiff sustained a variety of injuries including chronic headaches, neck and shoulder injuries. These had a poor prognosis and were expected to be permanently partly disabling in her occupation as a kinesiologist. In assessing non-pecuniary damages at $150,000 Madam Justice Winteringham provided the following reasons:
Reasons for judgment were published today by the BC Supreme Court, Vancouver Registry, assessing damages for chronic pain symptoms with psychiatric overlay caused by a series of collisions.
In today’s case (Sandhu v. Bates) the Plaintiff was injured in three collisions. Fault was admitted by the Defendants. The Plaintiff suffered injuries which developed into a myofascial pain syndrome. She further developed somatic symptom disorders. Her prognosis for full recovery was guarded. In assessing non-pecuniary damages at $95,000 Madam Justice Winteringham provided the following reasons:
 In summary, I make the following findings of fact respecting Mrs. Sandhu’s injuries:
a) Mrs. Sandhu sustained moderate soft tissue injuries to her neck, lower back, buttock, right hip, right ankle, and right knee in the accidents.
b) Rather than following a typical course of recovery after the accidents, Mrs. Sandhu experienced chronic low back pain affecting her buttock and pain down the right leg and associated numbness in the left buttock. Her chronic pain worsened in the first and second years following the accident and persisted at the time of trial.
c) I accept Dr. Squire’s opinion that the diagnosis for her physical injuries is most consistent with myofascial pain syndrome of the lumbopelvic area and that the intermittent exacerbations are likely episodic acute muscle spasms and the right leg pain is likely referred pain from the myofascial pain syndrome. I also accept that she continues to experience intermittent neck pain.
d) Dr. Joy, Dr. Anderson and Dr. Suhail all agree, and I find, that Mrs. Sandhu developed somatic symptom disorders. I note that though their diagnoses were not identical, Dr. Anderson and Dr. Suhail report that she meets the diagnostic criteria of somatic symptom disorder with predominant pain, following the accidents. In addition, I accept Dr. Anderson’s opinion that following the accidents, Mrs. Sandhu suffers from a generalized anxiety disorder.
e) I find that, as Mrs. Sandhu’s psychological condition deteriorated, her ability to cope with pain was poor. Dr. Suhail’s opinion, with which I agree, was that “as here pain would trigger her anxiety, her subsequent psychological problems would reduce her ability to cope with pain. Whenever she would be stressed and anxious, her back pain would increase.”
f) Dr. Joy, Dr. Anderson, Dr. Suhail, Dr. Chapman and Dr. Kashif all agree that Mrs. Sandhu suffered from anxiety after the accidents. They disagree about prognosis. I find that the first accident, and aggravated in the second and third, caused Mrs. Sandhu’s generalized anxiety disorder. The medical experts are all of the opinion that Mrs. Sandhu’s prognosis is guarded, particularly if she is unable to address her anxiety disorder. Dr. Suhail indicated some recent improvement and, with ongoing cognitive behavioral treatment, there is some reason for cautious optimism.
 I have reviewed the cases referred to by the parties. On my review of Mrs. Sandhu’s cases, as her counsel admits, the injuries suffered in some of those cases were more serious than what I have found in the present case. Similarly, I have found the cases relied on by the Defendants involved Plaintiffs with lesser injuries than those I have found in Mrs. Sandhu’s case.
 In all of the circumstances, and taking into account the authorities I have been referred to, I am satisfied that an award of $95,000 will appropriately compensate Mrs. Sandhu for her pain and suffering and loss of past and future enjoyment of life, for which the Defendants are responsible.
Reasons for judgement were published today by the BC Supreme Court, Vancouver Registry, assessing damages for chronic injuries sustained from two vehicle collisions.
In today’s case (Harry v. Powar) the Plaintiff was a pedestrian struck by a vehicle in a crosswalk in 2012. She was involved in a rear end collision the following year. The collisions resulted in ” headaches, chronic myofascial pain syndrome, cervical facet joint syndrome and lumbar facet joint syndrome” with a guarded prognosis for full recovery. In assessing non-pecuniary damages at $85,000 Madam Justice Winteringham provided the following reasons:  I have found that Ms. Harry’s most significant injuries are the headaches, chronic myofascial pain syndrome, cervical facet joint syndrome and lumbar facet joint syndrome. ..
 Ms. Harry was in her early thirties at the time of the Accidents. Sadly, the symptoms connected to her injuries are ongoing and I accept that her prognosis for a full recovery is guarded although she may experience some improvement with further treatments.
 The evidence demonstrates that Ms. Harry has tried to manage her pain in a way that enables her to carry on with her life. That is not to say her pain is insignificant. Rather, I have found that Ms. Harry has done almost all that she can to pursue her career despite the defendants’ negligence. It is also clear from the evidence that the energy exerted on pursuing her professional endeavours has taken a toll on the other aspects of her life. She does not have the energy or the physical well being to regularly conduct day-to-day household tasks, engage in social events or participate in physical activity – all of which formed an integral part of her life before the accidents. ..
 In all of the circumstances and taking into account the authorities I have been referred to, I am satisfied that an award of $85,000 will appropriately compensate Ms. Harry for her pain and suffering and loss of past and future enjoyment of life for which the defendants are responsible.
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When not writing the BC Injury Law Blog, Erik is the managing partner at MacIsaac & Company, based in Victoria, B.C. He is also involved with combative sports regulatory issues and authors the Combat Sports Law Blog.
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