Replacement of Income under No-Fault Insurance System
You were involved in a motor vehicle accident in Ontario. You are injured. You have to deal with the often devastating impact those injuries have on your life. On top of that you have to deal with trying to figure out if compensation is available to you, what compensation is available and who will pay this compensation.
Even if the accident was your fault you may be entitled to benefits from your own automobile insurance, referred to as Statutory Accident Benefits (SABS). These benefits include:
- Medical and rehabilitation benefits which are not covered by OHIP or some other health or disability plan
- Non earner/caregiver benefits
- Attendant care benefits
- Expenses of visitors
- Home maintenance benefits
- Lost educational expenses
- Damage to clothing, glasses, hearing aids, etc.
The regulations under the Insurance Act set out the specific and sometimes confusing steps you have to take to get these benefits. If your insurance company refuses to pay for the benefits, you may have to undergo physical examinations by doctors chosen by your insurance company.
If the accident is not your fault, or you were only partly responsible for the accident, you may be able to obtain compensation from the party responsible for the accident. This includes damages for pain and suffering and compensation for other losses not covered or only partially covered by the SABS. However, you are entitled to this compensation only if you sustained a permanent serious disfigurement, or a permanent serious impairment of an important bodily function caused by continuing injury which is physical in nature. Damages for pain and suffering also have a deductible that works the same way as your deductible for damages to your automobile.
Your family may also be entitled to receive damages for loss of care, guidance and companionship. These damages are also subject to a deductible.
If you have been injured in a motor vehicle accident, you should contact your lawyer to ensure that you are receiving the benefits to which you are entitled.