Question: My son was seriously injured in a car accident in Kingston. How do I obtain accident benefits for him? Does he qualify for catastrophic accident benefits?
Answer: After a car accident in Kingston, Ontario, an insured injured driver/passenger may receive accident benefits from his own car insurance company. If your son was driving his car and has a car insurance policy, he would receive accident benefits from his auto policy carrier. He must notify the insurance company within 7 days of the accident. Of course, in some situations it may be difficult to contact the insurance company within the 7 day period, i.e., if he was admitted to the hospital for several days. In that situation, he must notify the insurance company as soon as it is practical after the accident.
If he was living with you and driving your car when the accident happened, your car insurance company would provide accident benefits for your son.
After the insurance company is notified, forms will be sent to the insured, and the forms must be completed and returned within 30 days of receiving them.
Catastrophic Accident Benefits
Catastrophic injuries sustained in car, truck or other motor vehicle accidents in Ontario have a very specific meaning under Ontario law. Catastrophic injury is defined by the Statutory Accident Benefits Schedule (SABS) and can be divided into 2 groups. One group of catastrophic injury is obvious in terms of its severity. If injured victims sustain these types of catastrophic injuries, they are automatically in the catastrophic injury category and may receive a higher amount of benefits than injured victims in the non-minor or minor injury category.
These injuries include: paraplegia or quadriplegia, amputation of an arm or leg or another impairment causing the total and permanent loss of use of an arm or a leg, total loss of vision, and certain types of traumatic brain injuries.
The other group of catastrophic injury requires a determination of whether the injury is catastrophic through an impairment rating. If an accident victim has a physical impairment rating of 55% or more, then he may be eligible to receive catastrophic accident benefits. If the accident victim has an extreme or marked mental impairment, he may also be eligible to receive catastrophic accident benefits. An impairment determination is based on the American Medical Association’s Guides to the Evaluation.
It is extremely important to talk to a car accident lawyer in Ontario if your son’s accident happened in Kingston, Ottawa or Whitby, especially if your son’s injuries do not automatically place him in the catastrophic injury category. Convincing an auto insurance company that your son’s injuries are catastrophic can be challenging if he doesn’t have an experienced catastrophic car accident injury lawyer on his side. Call 1-866-384-5886 to schedule a free consultation.