Plaintiff Awarded $80,000 for Whiplash Injuries to Neck and Back in ICBC Case

In the recently published case of Hosking v. Mahoney, 2009 BCSC 803 a plaintiff was awarded $80,000 after trial for soft tissue injuries to her neck and upper back which had resulted from a rear-end accident that occurred in February 2004. The trial judge reduced the award by 25% to take account of injuries the plaintiff had sustained in earlier car accidents and falls that took place in the period between the accident and trial. The plaintiff was also awarded compensation for twenty sick days and a further $160,000 (also reduced by 25%) to compensate for her having to retire two years earlier than she otherwise would have.

Notably, the trial judge (Mr. Justice Warren) criticized ICBC’s medical expert, Dr. Kenneth Favero (orthopaedic surgeon), for displaying a “significant skepticism” in his report to the extent that his language weakened his opinion. Justice Warren pointed out that the expert’s use of words such as “alleged” rather than “reported” were “those of an author inclined to be the champion of the retaining client and not the objective language required of an expert”. He held that the fact that the expert performed 98% of his reports

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for ICBC did not, in and of itself, provide a basis for giving his evidence little weight.

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