Personal injury is defined as impairment to the body, mind or emotions as a result of an accident or trauma.

In situations where a person has been injured as a result of the negligence of another person, he or she may have the right to make a claim for damages.

Claims can be made for seriously injured victims due to the negligent conduct of others such as:

  • motor vehicle accidents
  • injuries occurring on public or private property
  • product malfunctions
  • medical malpractice
The information provided in this online guide is not meant as a substitute for a personal injury lawyer, but rather as a first step in helping people understand their rights to receive compensation when injured in a motor vehicle accident.

For more specific legal guidance, or advice on matters related to injury sustained in other situations, please contact us directly.

If you have been injured in a motor vehicle accident, you may be entitled to compensation for loss of income and medical/rehabilitation expenses in addition to compensation for pain and suffering and loss of quality of life.

Compensation can be obtained through two methods:

1. receiving accident benefits through your insurance company
2. suing the negligent driver for damages

A number of crucial steps need to be taken almost immediately to ensure any right to compensation. This is why it is important to contact a personal injury specialist as soon as possible after an accident.



A person is considered catastrophically injured if they have suffered any of the following:
  • paraplegia
  • quadriplegia
  • permanent loss of a limb
  • total loss of vision in both eyes
  • brain impairment which is recorded 9 or less on the Glasgow Coma Scale (G.C.S.)
  • 55% whole body impairment pursuant to American Medical Association Guidelines - once your condition has stabilized or two years after the motor vehicle collision or after stabilization
  • Class 4 or 5 impairment due to mental or behavioral disorder under American Medical Association Guidelines - once your condition has stabilized or two years after the motor vehicle collision
  • Being found catastrophically injured means that a person is eligible for far greater accident benefits than a person not designated as catastrophic.

    If a person is non-catastrophically injured, benefit entitlements are:
    • a maximum of $50,000 for medical and rehabilitation benefits payable for no more than 10 years
    • a maximum of $36,000 for attendant care benefits payable over 2 years (maximum of $3,000 payable monthly for 24 months)
    • expenses of family members and individuals who were living with you at the time of the accident if they visit you during your treatment or recovery
    • lost education expenses up to a maximum of $15,000

    What are accident benefits?

    Accident benefits through your insurer can include:
    • replacing a percentage of an injured person’s income
    • medical and rehabilitation expenses
    • attendant care expenses
    • funeral expenses
    • death benefits
    • lost educational expenses
    • housekeeping or house maintenance expenses
    It is important to realize that an insurer may not explain all the benefits you're entitled to. This is why getting the right legal advice is critical. A personal injury lawyer considers many different things while assessing a case, starting with determining whether a person is catastrophically injured, as defined by the legislation. Being found catastrophically injured means that a person is eligible for far greater accident benefits than a person designated as non-catastrophic.

    What are the rights to sue an at-fault driver?

    In addition to obtaining compensation through your insurer, an injured person can sue an at-fault driver for pain and suffering if the threshold test is met.

    Threshold Test

    The threshold test to sue is:
    • a family member has died as a result of the collision
    • the injured victim has suffered a permanent serious impairment of an important physical, mental or psychological function
    • the injured victim has suffered a permanent, serious disfigurement
    NOTE: A person does not have to be catastrophically injured to sue.

    If an injury meets the threshold test, then a person may be entitled to sue for any health care expenses not covered by the accident benefit insurer or government health care plan.

    One can also sue for lost income. An injured person can sue for 70% of his or her income loss up to the date of trial, and 100% of their gross future income loss, for the remainder of what would have been their working life, if they continue to be disabled from work.

    Family members are eligible to make a claim if there has been a death or the injured victim’s injuries meet the threshold test.


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