personal injury accident can happen in a matter of seconds and quickly affect the quality of the rest of your life, including your family life and your employment and economic stability. A financial settlement or court order for ”damages” may be available, especially if the accident was unforeseeable and/or due to an unexpected turn of events. Whether your injury was sustained from a car accidentslip and fall, medical malpractice or physical altercation, the damages paid are considered to be “compensatory”, “punitive” or both. Most accidents involve compensatory damages only, as an award for punitive damages occurs rarely and requires a high threshold to prove. Compensatory damages can be broken down into two categories – general and special damages. Additional damages may be awarded for family member claims.


General or non-pecuniary damages are entitlements to compensation for non-economic losses such as physical pain, emotional distress, chronic suffering, impairment or disfigurement, and loss of quality of life to the individual.  These damages are not capable of exact quantification but are compensated for with money. An experienced personal injury lawyer in Oshawa will be able to help you quantify a realistic value for compensation.

The amount of non-pecuniary damages available is capped by a “trilogy” of 1978 judgments of the Supreme Court of Canada, which involved catastrophically injured youths. The Supreme Court of Canada limited general damage awards for pain and suffering at $100,000.00 with the condition that future awards would be indexed to inflation. The maximum award for general damages is estimated at 354,131 as of December 2015.


Special damages are pecuniary damages, which are losses that can be measured economically. Special damages can be awarded for present and/or future lost earnings, medical bills, cost of future medical care, household expenses and costs associated with cancelled trips or altered plans.

Lost wages and lost future income are commonly awarded in a personal injury case. Physical and emotional debilitation suffered as a result of an accident can affect one’s ability to work or may limit an individual’s performance capacity. Age is a critical factor for assessing economic loss; a younger individual may experience a greater economic loss as result of accidental injury as his or her lifetime earning capacity may be more severely compromised than someone else who is closer to retirement age. Lost wages and lost income are calculated by means of payroll, receipts, tax returns, and/or expert reports.

Medical bills and future medical care costs can be significant components of personal injury accident compensation, given that serious injuries can require expensive long term care. Depending on the age and occupation of the injured victim, the costs associated with rehabilitation and daily living may be assessed as millions of dollars.  Calculations for future care costs are often estimated based on expert reports.

On example of future care costs is the Ontario motor vehicle accident claim of Maroccia v. Ford Credit Canada Limited, 2008 CanLII 27817 (ONSC).  A jury assessed $13,953,066 for the continuing care of 20 year old Robert Marcoccia.  The Grade 12 student collided with an oncoming furniture truck.  Robert Marcoccia’s total $16.9 million jury award was upheld by the Court of Appeal. If you are the victim of a motor vehicle accident, an experienced car accident lawyer in the Oshawa and Whitby area can help you get the compensation needed to fulfill your related expenses.


Ontario’s Family Law Act allows for family members to sue for their financial losses related to care, guidance and companionship suffered as a result of a family member’s injury or death. Family members that are eligible are spouses, children, grandchildren, parents, grandparents, brothers and sisters of the victim. Family member claims are subject to a $15,000 deductible except where more than $50,000 is settled upon or awarded or where death occurs as a result of the accident. The most common wrongful death damages include funeral and burial expenses, cost of pre-death medical care, loss of financial contribution and an amount to compensate for the distress resulting from the future loss of support, guidance and companionship. If you suffered financial loss due to the injury or death of a family member from a car accident, or another personal injury case, contact a personal injury lawyer in Whitby or surrounding area to help you make a claim.


Punitive damages may be awarded as punishment of those who are found guilty of wrongdoing and are usually limited to cases of intentional torts (e.g., using an automobile as a weapon for assault). There are no limits to the amount of damages that may be imposed on the guilty party. However, the courts require a high level of proof.  An abuse of authority, malicious or highly reprehensible misconduct that greatly deviates from ordinary standards of decent behaviour must be proven through litigation before any punitive damages are imposed.


qualified, compassionate, experienced lawyer in Oshawa can alleviate some of the anxiety and stress associated with your Ontario personal injury lawsuit. At Kitchen Simeson Belliveau LLP, we can help you identify the personal injury compensation types you are entitled to under the law. A personal injury lawyer in WhitbyCobourgLindsay, Oshawa or a surrounding area at our law firm can assist you in recovering compensatory damages for both economic and non-economic losses and family member claims. Call us today at 905-579-5302.