A recent decision out of the Ontario Superior Court involved a personal injury lawsuit in which an innocent man sustained injuries in a motor vehicle accident in 2000. He was involved in a rear end collision. The injured victim sustained a whiplash injury. He had excellent career prospects at the time of the accident and was physically active. One year after the accident he was in chronic pain, anxious, severely depressed and risked the loss of his job due to poor performance.
He had a history of work related stress and pre-existing neck and back pain that required chiropractic treatment. In addition, he was involved in two subsequent rear-end accidents in February 2002 and August 2003.
The victim's accident lawyer successfully argued that but for the first car accident the victim would not have developed the chronic pain, stress, anxiety disorders and associated problems. The court accepted this argument.
His pre-accident neck and back pain was not unusual and had always resolved with treatment.
He suffered from chronic pain syndrome. His debilitating physical and psychological maladies were ongoing at the time of the subsequent accidents. Those subsequent car accidents contributed to his damages, but did not cause them. His current complaints were caused by the first motor vehicle accident.
Damages were globally assessed for all three accidents with 10% and 20% attributable to the second and third accidents respectively. In the net result, the injured victim's accident lawyer was successful in obtaining an award of general damages for pain and suffering in the amount of $98,000.00, damages for future income loss of $579,642.00 and damages for loss of housekeeping capacity of $66,500.00.