18 Nov Depression – Collision Related or Not?

In most cases that proceed to trial, there is a disagreement over a key issue that has a significant impact on a case’s potential value.  This appeared to be the case in Truong v. Lu, 2016 BCSC 2043.

In the Truong case, the Plaintiff alleged he had suffered injuries to his neck, back and leg, as well as depression.  The issue was whether the Plaintiff’s depression was caused by the collision.  This was an important issue because the Plaintiff’s expert evidence indicated that the Plaintiff was not working due to his depression.  If he was not working due to depression caused by the collision, he would be entitled to compensation for the economic loss associated with his inability to work.  However, if he was off work for issued unrelated to the collision, then he would not be entitled to compensation for the economic loss associated with his inability to work.

After considering the evidence, the Court found that the Plaintiff lost his job for reasons unrelated to the collision and he became depressed after he lost his job.  Although the expert evidence indicated that he would not have become depressed if he had not lost his job, there was no evidence to prove that he lost his job due to the collision or that he became depressed due to the collision. As a result, the Court did not award him compensation for his lost wages or opportunity to work.  The Court did find that his physical injuries had a minor negative impact on his future work capacity and awarded him $15,000 for that.

These issues are often factually and legally complicated. Please seek legal advice from Acheson Sweeney Foley Sahota to help you understand how this may apply to your situation.