After serious and catastrophic car or truck accidents in Ontario, injured drivers, passengers and pedestrians often have many questions. This 2 part article will discuss some of the common questions people often have after accidents in Kingston, Ottawa or Whitby.
What Financial Compensation Can You Receive After an Ontario Car Accident?
There are 2 types of claims injured drivers, passengers and pedestrians may file after being injured in Ontario motor vehicle accidents: 1. accident benefits claims, and 2. tort claims. Each claim has different types of damages injured drivers, passengers and pedestrians can sue for and recover.
Accident Benefits Claims
Because of Ontario's "no-fault" insurance law, injured drivers, passengers and pedestrians may file accident benefits claims with their auto insurance companies. "No-fault" insurance is often misunderstood. It does not mean that a driver who caused the accident is not at fault. Rather, it means that regardless of who caused the accident, the injured driver, passenger or pedestrian looks to his or her own auto insurance company to recover accident benefits.
Some of the benefits an insured injured driver, passenger or pedestrian may receive after an accident are:
- medical and rehabilitation care benefits
- lost pay or income continuation benefits,
- caregiver benefits, and/or
• reimbursement for housekeeping and home maintenance.
One of the most important benefits is the medical and rehabilitation care benefits coverage. It pays for reasonable and necessary medical expenses that are not covered by Ontario Health Insurance Plan (OHIP).
Though the accident benefits discussed above financially compensate injured drivers, passengers and pedestrians for their injuries and damages, there are some types of damages, such as pain and suffering or other non-pecuniary damages, that cannot be recovered via accident benefits claims. Further, lost pay benefits only partially compensate injured drivers for their lost wages. Therefore, damages such as pain and suffering and the difference in lost pay may be recovered through tort claims. Injured drivers essentially file lawsuits against the at-fault drivers.
In a tort claim or lawsuit, the injured driver, passenger or pedestrian may recover the following damages:
- pain and suffering,
- loss of income,
- loss of competitive advantage in the workplace,
- out of pocket expenses, and
- other damages which are not covered by auto accident benefits.
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