Sinnott v. Boggs, 2007 BCSC 267
Court of Appeal upholds the decision to award 16 year-old girl $30,000 for loss of future earning capacity.
Keith McGee and John Rice were trial counsel for Kasey Sinnott, a 16 year girl in grade 11. Kasey was injured when the van she was driving was hit from behind by a pick-up truck being driven by the Defendant. Kasey suffered a whiplash injury to her neck and shoulders. She missed a week of school after the accident and it impacted on her ability to play sports and work at part time jobs. By the time of trial we argued Kasey had developed a mild chronic pain problem that did and would impact her life and career.
ICBC said the Plaintiff had recovered and that her ability to make money was not impacted.
The trial judge accepted the Plaintiff’s case and relied on expert medical opinion that going forward Kasey would have trouble with some categories of more physically demanding work. Even though Kasey was young, with no established career path, the trial judge found she was entitled to be compensated for the limitations on her ability to work competitively in all jobs previously open to her. The trial judge awarded Kasey damages for her diminished income earning capacity. ICBC appealed the trial judge’s award for future earning capacity. The Court of Appeal dismissed the Appeal. The Court of Appeal reasons are often referenced by lawyers and judges in cases involving injury to the work capacity of a young person just starting out in life on their own.