Based on the following sampling of case law, the range for general damages awarded for suffering from brain and skull injuries as a result of an accident is between $23,948 – $339,111 [adjusted for 2022 inflation rates]. The general damage award amounts for each individual case below have not been adjusted for inflation. For your convenience, the Bank of Canada Inflation Calculator can be accessed here.
As described in our General Damages Guide, these awards are only for general damages which compensate you for your pain and suffering. There are other types of damages that you may be entitled to claim, such as lost income and medical care costs, depending on the circumstances of your case. To assess the total value of your injury claim, try our Injury Claim Calculator or book a free consultation.
The case law
Revak v. Rosenberger, 2017 BCSC 2370
- The 45-year-old plaintiff suffered a mild traumatic brain injury and soft tissue injuries in a motor vehicle accident. As a result, he experienced post-concussion syndrome and an aggravation of pre-existing chronic pain. He had difficulty with speech, concentration, coordination, dizziness, and balance, as well as headaches and neck pain. He was unable to continue his work as a painter and was likely disabled from any future employment. He received $100,000 in general damages.
Norton v. Dong, 2017 BCSC 2281
- The plaintiff was in a rear end collision at highway speeds and suffered multiple soft tissue injures to his neck, back, and shoulders, as well as a mild traumatic brain injury. He suffered from frequent headaches, chronic neck pain, sound sensitivity, tinnitus, and an inability to sleep as a result of his injuries. There was some indication he may be capable of returning to work in the future. He received $160,000 in general damages.
Kwok v. Abecassis, 2017 ONSC 164
- The 50-year-old plaintiff was involved in a series of collisions with both guardrails and another vehicle after being cut off and taking evasive action to avoid a collision. He suffered a moderate to severe traumatic brain injury including a diffuse axonal injury (DAI), a cerebral hematoma, head laceration, depression, anxiety, PTSD, and soft tissue injuries to his neck, shoulder, and lower back. As a result of these injuries, the plaintiff dealt with chronic pain, dizziness, poor vision, balance and coordination issues, slowed gait, and many other psychological and cognitive difficulties which left him markedly impaired in every facet. His injuries were deemed permanent and unlikely to improve. He received $290,000 in general damages.
Howell v. Machi, 2017, BCSC 1806
- The 22-year-old plaintiff was struck by a vehicle while jaywalking and suffered catastrophic injuries, including; skull fracture that caused blood and cerebral spinal fluid to leak from her ear, loss of consciousness, brain trauma including hematoma with intracranial bleeding and contusions, axonal shear injuries to brain, complicated traumatic brain injury with associated concussion and amnesia, rib fracture, chronic post-concussive symptoms, multiple lacerations and soft tissue injuries, and many psychological diagnoses, some of which were an aggravation of pre-existing disorders. The plaintiff was expected to struggle for the remainder of her life due to the severe physical cognitive, and emotional impacts of the collision. She received $275,000 in general damages.
Paterson v. Hindle, 2017 BCSC 1104
- The 79-year-old plaintiff was injured in a rear-end collision which resulted in a mild traumatic brain injury and soft tissue injuries to her neck, shoulders, upper back, and lower back, and injuries to her pelvis and legs. She suffered from memory difficulties, anxiety, and depression after the accident. While some of her injuries resolved, she continued to struggle with chronic neck pain, cognitive impairment, depression, and anxiety. She received $125,000 in general damages.
Cadieux (Litigation guardian of) v. Cloutier, 2016 ONSC 7604
- The plaintiff was run over by a truck after being pushed towards the road and suffered a fractured skull, brain damage, and orthopedic injuries. He became incapable of managing his own affairs due to these injuries. He received $225,000 in general damages.
Wawanesa Mutual Insurance Company v. Johnston, 2011 NBQB 114
- The 16-year-old plaintiff was in a motor vehicle accident which resulted in severe injuries including; severe head injury resulting in attention, memory, and other cognitive deficits, pulmonary contusions, pneumothorax, and fractured spleen and right clavicle. He is totally disabled and will remain so for the remainder of his life. He suffers from cognitive impairment as well and requires constant supervision. Given his cognitive limitations and behavioral issues, the plaintiff will not be able to work. He received $235,000 in general damages.
Vogler v. Szendroi, 2010 NSSC 390
- The 21-year-old plaintiff was a back seat passenger in a motor vehicle collision which caused him to be thrown from the vehicle. He suffered a fractured skull, axonal shear brain injury, fractured ribs and pelvis, bruised lung, punctured lung and other injuries. While most of his injuries healed over time, his severe brain injury improved slightly but left him with lasting effects such as; memory and information processing impairment, blurred vision, and problems with depth perception. He also had permanent scarring on his arm. He received $150,000 in general damages.
Larocque c. Duguay, 2009 NBBR 171
- The 19-year-old plaintiff was struck by an all-terrain vehicle while riding his bicycle. He lost consciousness and regained it at the hospital. He was in intensive care for 3 days, having suffered cranial trauma, fractured orbital cavity, and shoulder abrasions. He suffered from dizziness and tinnitus for several months and still had partial deafness 8 years later at the time of trial. He received $18,000 in general damages.
- The 39-year-old plaintiff was injured in a motor vehicle collision in which he lost consciousness and was admitted to the hospital for 8 days. He suffered a mild traumatic brain injury, fractured pelvis and iliac crest, and injuries to his hip, ribs, eye, and abdomen. The injuries had a devastating impact on his ability to enjoy life. He now avoided interactions with people, feeling he had a low-tolerance for socializing, and was no longer bright, articulate, confident, or capable. He was able to be in a store as he was a retail store manager prior to the accident, however, his inability to service customers led to many complaints. As such, he would never hold gainful employment in the future. He received $125,000 in general damages.
A.E. v. D.W.J., 2008 BCSC 1318
- The 30-year-old plaintiff struck her head during a motor vehicle accident and suffered serious injuries and lasting symptoms. She suffered soft tissue injuries to her neck, back, and arm, as well as a mild traumatic brain injury. As time went on, she suffered from headaches, dizziness, tinnitus, and TMJ problems. She also suffered from a long list of psychological issues such a hearing voices, PTSD, severe depression, suicidal thoughts, and Dissociative Identity Disorder. Given her ongoing symptoms, she became estranged from her husband and was living in an assisted living facility at the time of trial. She suffered from chronic pain as well. Prior to the accident, the plaintiff worked as a counsellor and music teacher and was generally high-functioning as a mother, employee, and community member. She received $100,000 in general damages.
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