Damages - Types of damages - Special damages - Past loss of income - Employment income

Law360 Canada (April 4, 2023, 1:30 PM EDT) -- Appeal by the plaintiff Maingot from the trial judge's award of loss of future earning capacity. He argued the trial judge made a palpable and overriding error in assessing prospects of his return to work and erred in the legal method she employed to assess future earning capacity. The defendants cross appealed the awards of past income loss and future earning capacity. The appellant was injured in two motor vehicle accidents. Although suffering from these injuries, the appellant was not incapacitated from working. Six years later, the appellant’s health deteriorated dramatically. In the two years preceding trial, the appellant experienced significant cognitive decline and somatic symptom disorder (SSD). By the time of trial, he was unemployable. The respondents argued the appellant’s SSD explained his incapacity to work now, and possibly into the future, but that this illness was legally unrelated to the accidents. The trial judge disagreed. She concluded the accidents were a substantial contributing cause of the appellant’s chronic pain and headaches, and his chronic pain continued to trial, and causally contributed to his SSD. The trial judge recognized the primary cause of the appellant’s current unemployability was his SSD. Going forward, she found there was a real and substantial probability the appellant would be able to return to work in his field within a matter of years. In the result, she awarded him $660,000, representing three years of his base annual income of $220,000....
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