Toronto Accidents Can Result in Brain Injury with Short and Long Term Consequences

Toronto Accidents Can Result in Brain Injury with Short and Long Term Consequences

It is estimated that 50 percent of brain injuries suffered by adults are caused by motor vehicle accidents. The force of the collision can cause direct impact (such as the head striking the steering wheel) or indirect impact (the sudden jolt causes the brain to strike against the skull). Accidental brain injuries also result from slips and falls and contact sports, such as boxing or football. Regrettably, one cause that is not accidental is physical assault.
There is not one age group that is not susceptible to brain injuries; they affect everyone from children through to young adults and seniors.
Regardless of what causes the brain injury, immediate medical attention must always be sought. Brain injuries may readily present symptoms, such as a blood clot appearing on a CT scan or the sufferer experiencing nausea, disorientation and/or headaches. The injuries are no less severe just because they have been diagnosed. The brain injury may manifest itself in a loss of consciousness, even coma. 
Indeed, any kind of injury to the brain has the potential to be – or become – extremely serious.
Frustratingly, some brain injuries may not be readily apparent or may not even develop until days – even years – later.  For example, someone who has suffered a severe brain injury has an increased chance of developing a degenerative neurological or neuromuscular disorder such as Parkinson’s Disease or Alzheimer’s Disease.


A Tort Claim and the Family Law Act


There isn’t just one victim. Besides the injured individual are family members who must make sacrifices in order to support their loved one. The victim could be too young to make decisions or the brain injury sustained has led to temporary or permanent incapacitation. In such circumstances, Power of Attorney may be required.


Under the province’s Family Law Act, the family of the injured party can make a Tort Claim, i.e. lawsuit, for the loss of comfort, care and companionship. If the victim of the injury does not have immediate family, a Tort Claim may be the best means of pursuing financial compensation for ongoing care, pain and suffering, and the loss of future income.


Seek Legal Advice Immediately


In the aftermath of a severe accident, the last thing on one’s mind is to contact a lawyer. Family members need to arrange travel and accommodations if they are not in Toronto, consult medical specialists and arrange hospital visits. However, as soon as the accident occurs, it is highly recommended that legal advice be sought immediately. While our universal health care means access to top Toronto hospitals and an internationally renowned children’s medical centre, a brain injury will have financial requirements. A personal injury lawyer will advise on options, such as Statutory Accident Benefits (through the Ontario Insurance Act) or if the matter has the potential for a Tort Claim.


Different types of claims have different time limitations. Some claims must be filed almost immediately, such as is the case if the accident is due to the negligence of a City of Toronto employee or municipal service like a Toronto Transit Commission (TTC) bus or streetcar. As mentioned, some brain injuries take time to become apparent. It is prudent to explore options with a personal injury lawyer who has a full understanding of the delicacy and devastation of brain injuries and their far-reaching implications.