What is a minor injury cap, and what are the cap amounts in Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and PEI?
A minor injury cap is a limit on the amount of general damages a person can claim for pain and suffering and loss of enjoyable activities. It typically applies to whiplash, whiplash associated disorder (typically WAD 2) and other soft tissue injures that do not substantially interfere with work or activities of daily living (injuries considered not permanent and serious.)
Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, and Prince Edward Island have minor injury caps. These caps were put in place by the government to limit the amount of damages awarded for these kinds of injuries. The cap amounts are adjusted annually for inflation.
However, an injury could be over the minor injury cap because of the effects it has on a person. MacGillivray Law uses case law to interpret the definitions and apply them to the facts in your case. We are often able to advocate that an injury is over the minor injury cap even when the insurance company for the at-fault driver says the minor injury cap applies. There is no minor injury cap in Newfoundland and Labrador but there is a $5,000 deductible on general damages.
What is the minor injury cap amount for each province?
Nova Scotia: $10,000 (source)
New Brunswick: $9,182.57 (as of January 2022, source)
Prince Edward Island: $9,094 (source)
What is the Newfoundland and Labrador “deductible” on general damages?
There is no minor injury cap in Newfoundland and Labrador but there is a $5,000 deductible on general damages. A deductible is an amount of money that you are responsible for paying out of pocket towards an insured loss before the insurer steps in to pay. In the context of a car accident, $5,000 will be subtracted from the paid amount of general damages that are assessed in your claim. This means that an award for general damages in Newfoundland and Labrador will always have $5,000 subtracted from its amount.
What is an average settlement for a soft tissue injury that is over the cap?
The general damages award for a soft tissue injury considered over the cap can range from $30,000 to $70,000. To get in this range of settlement for general damages, the soft tissue injury must be at least persistently troubling in excess of one year.
How can MacGillivray Law advocate that a car accident injury is over the minor injury cap?
Some of the following considerations could result in a claim being awarded over the minor injury cap in Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, and Prince Edward Island:
- Your duties at work have changed because of your injuries
- There is a significant impact on your ability to do household tasks
- There is a significant effect on your ability to perform enjoyable activities or hobbies
- Time off work exceeds six months
- Work begins with a new employer or there is a change in position due to injuries sustained
- You have prolonged treatment of 12-24 months, or are referred to specialists or pain clinics
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