What happens if I am responsible for an accident that causes injuries to my partner or children?
Many of our clients have found themselves in the situation of being involved in an accident that might be the fault of a family member. Sadly some people have found themselves responsible (in whole or in part) for injuries suffered by someone they love, including their own child. Mistakes can happen in a spilt second. We all make them. But if someone is injured as a result of these mistakes, the most important thing is to ensure that all available care is provided.
Regardless of who is responsible for an accident, if your loved one has been seriously injured, it is vital to obtain legal advice.
Can my loved one get compensation?
Yes. Insurance money is usually available to help with rehabilitation and care if the injury arises from a car accident, or some other circumstances. While MSP will pay for most hospital care, once a patient is discharged, many therapies must be paid for by the patient themselves. “No fault” rehabilitation benefits may be available in auto accident cases but in serious cases those funds can run out within a year or two.
Does my spouse or child have to sue me? What happens if I get sued?
In some cases, a law suit where one member of the family sues another, including a child suing a parent, is the way to recover funds needed for rehabilitation and future care. The idea of being sued by your own child can sound scary and confusing. But, before you start to panic at the idea, please realize that even if you are 100% responsible for a car accident, your insurance money can be available to someone who is injured, even if it is your own family member.
If you are sued, the insurance company will hire and pay for a lawyer for you. If you are responsible for the accident and have ICBC insurance, ICBC will usually try to settle the claim made by the injured person, even if the injured person is your own child, husband, wife, or parent.
What does all this mean for my injured family member?
It means that just like in every other case, your loved one needs the best legal advice available. If your loved one has a brain injury, he or she will need rehabilitation and may need long-term (even life-long) care. The only way to ensure that care will be available is to put your loved one in touch with a lawyer experienced in the type of injury involved.
My family member is still in hospital. Can I contact a lawyer on their behalf?
Yes you can. If your loved one is seriously injured, they need good advice as early as possible, even if they are not personally able to understand it. If you call our firm we will explain how the process works so you do not have to worry – even if you are the one who might be sued. These initial discussions are always without any charge or obligation. If you choose to hire us, we will also help obtain the necessary rehab, and even work with your family to appoint a legal representative for an injured adult, if that is needed – all at no extra cost.
A serious injury suffered by a loved one can be the most difficult thing that a family must deal with. An experienced brain injury lawyer can make things easier so the family can focus on rehab and recovery, rather than worrying about the legal issues and about money.
My loved one was seriously injured in a car accident many years ago and is still in need of help and support, but we never made a claim. Is it too late now?
While there are limitation periods, it may not be too late even if the injuries occurred 5, 10, or even 20+ years ago. Call us right away and we can discuss whether limitation periods might not apply in your particular case. Initial discussions are without charge or obligation.