Recent & Notable Judgments

Below are some of the trial results obtained by members of Collette Parsons Harris*.

Luis v. Marchiori Details

Guy acted for the Plaintiff. The Plaintiff was an office worker who was 50 years old at the time of trial. She was injured in two motor vehicle accidents and awarded $1,187,000 by a Judge following an eight day trial. The Plaintiff sustained chronic neck and back pain and headaches as a result of the accidents. She also suffered depression, posttraumatic stress disorder, and a somatic symptom disorder as a result of the accidents. ICBC's lawyers argued the Plaintiff was not credible and raised four issues that they said went to the Plaintiff's credibility. The trial Judge discussed the points raised by ICBC's counsel and discounted them all (see paragraphs 9-30 of the judgment at the "Details" tab). Ultimately the trial Judge accepted that the Plaintiff was disabled from work as a result of the injuries she sustained in the accidents and awarded her $616,000 for past and future lost work capacity. The trial Judge awarded the Plaintiff $400,000 for future care so that the Plaintiff can manage her condition and get assistance as needed in the future. The trial Judge also awarded the Plaintiff $120,000 to help her cope with her pain and suffering. The breakdown of damages between all heads of damage can be found at paragraph 239 of the judgment which can be viewed by clicking the "Details" tab.

Back to top
  
L.S. v. ICBC et al. – Jury Trial Details

Richard and Simon acted for the Plaintiff in a four week jury trial, during January of 2014. The jury awarded the Plaintiff $2,728,473 (link here to the jury’s verdict). However, this amount was reduced by $369,000, as the jury award of $720,000 for pain and suffering exceeded the inflation adjusted limit on pain and suffering damages, which was $351,000 at the time of trial. After calculation of additional damages for tax-gross up and management fees, the final jury verdict was just over $2,800,000.

The Plaintiff had suffered a traumatic brain injury, and orthopedic injuries, as a result of a motor vehicle accident. The Plaintiff was aged 18 at the time of the accident and had been struck by a vehicle, as a pedestrian. The damage to the Plaintiff’s brain was to his frontal lobes, the region of the brain that regulates “executive function”. Due to his frontal lobe brain injury the Plaintiff had a change to his personality. He was no longer the thoughtful and caring person he had been before the accident. Rather, he became angry and reclusive. The Plaintiff was of exceptional intelligence, which was fortunately unaffected by the accident. He actually achieved better grades in University following the accident than he had achieved before. However, the evidence and arguments in the Plaintiff’s case was that the changes to his personality would significantly affect his ability to earn income throughout his lifetime, and that he would require ongoing care and assistance.

The lawyers and experts hired by ICBC argued that the Plaintiff’s injuries would not affect his vocational pursuits in any significant way over the course of his life or cause him to require care.

The Plaintiff’s case was preferred by the jury as evidenced by the result.

Back to top
  
Forder v. Linde Details

Richard and Nick acted for the Plaintiff, who was 50 years old at the time of trial. The Plaintiff had been rear-ended while driving on Lougheed Highway. As a result of the collision, the Plaintiff suffered a concussion which managed to resolve over time. However, she was also left with chronic pain and headaches that prevented her from returning to her job as a special education assistant, and caused her to require ongoing care and rehabilitation treatment.

Following a three week trial, the trial Judge awarded the Plaintiff damages of $835,600.76, plus the cost of the trial, and damages for tax-gross up and management fees. At paragraph 710 of his reasons the trial Judge stated as follows, concerning the written argument prepared by Collette Parsons Harris, which was provided to him at the end of the case in conjunction with oral submissions:

[710] Plaintiff’s counsel provided me an excellent detailed 83 page brief which I found most helpful. My summary of the submissions in no way diminishes a very strong argument for Ms. Forder’s claims.

Back to top
  
Gilbert v. Bottle Details
Guy acted for a First Nations woman who suffered a traumatic brain injury, soft tissue injuries, and a fractured clavicle as a result of a motor vehicle accident that occurred in Williams Lake, British Columbia. The Plaintiff was a rear seat passenger, the driver was impaired by alcohol and lost control of the vehicle in a corner. The Plaintiff was not wearing a seatbelt and she was ejected from the vehicle during the accident. ICBC argued that the Plaintiff’s damages should be reduced on a percentage basis for contributory negligence given that the Plaintiff had accepted a ride with an impaired driver and failed to wear a seatbelt. The trial Judge found that no deduction should be taken from the Plaintiff’s damages for contributory negligence. The Plaintiff was awarded $886,269.44 plus double costs of the action. The award included $400,000 for loss of future earning capacity. The Plaintiff had been "exposed over the years to poverty, substance abuse and other tragic circumstances often associated with reserve life in Canada". The defence argued that despite her injuries " viewed from a functional perspective her condition before and after the accident is essentially unchanged" and therefore she had no loss of earning capacity. The trial judge unequivocally rejected the defence position that the Plaintiff had little or no value as a person capable of earning income in a competitive labour market.
Back to top
  
Shapiro v. Dailey Trial Decision
Court of Appeal
Richard acted for the plaintiff who was turning left at the corner of Dundas Street and Nanaimo Street in Vancouver when she was hit by a car driven by a drunk driver. The plaintiff suffered soft tissue injuries in the accident and went on to develop complex chronic pain. Complex chronic pain is a devastating condition that arises when a person's nervous system becomes sensitized following trauma. After hearing two weeks of expert and lay evidence regarding the causes of complex chronic pain, and its devastating effects, the Court awarded the plaintiff over $1.4 million to compensate her for her injuries. ICBC appealed the judgment. The judgment was upheld in a unanimous decision of the British Columbia Court of Appeal.
Back to top
  
Harrington v. Sangha Details
Guy and Richard acted for the Plaintiff who was injured when she hit a jack knifed semi trailer as she was driving towards Quesnel, British Columbia. ICBC argued that the Plaintiff was partially to blame for the accident for failing to avoid the jack knifed trailer when she encountered it coming towards her in her own lane. ICBC also contested the nature and extent of the Plaintiff's brain injury and brachial plexus injury. After a four week trial ICBC's argument that the Plaintiff was partly to blame for the accident failed and the 45 year old Plaintiff, who had been a casino worker before the accident, was awarded $1,080,465.00 plus tax gross-up and management fees. After tax gross-up and mamangement fees and deductions pursuant to section 83 of the Insurance (Vehicle) Act the final entered order from trial awarded damages to the Plaintiff in the amount of $1,201,793 plus court costs and the necessary expenses incurred to prove the case. The Judgment is also notable because the trial Judge refused to deduct fair pharmacare benefits from the Plaintiff's award for future medication costs as was submitted by ICBC.
Back to top
  
Gibbens v. Co-Operators Life Insurance Company Trial Decision
Court of Appeal
Supreme Court of Canada
Guy acted for the plaintiff who was rendered a paraplegic after he contracted the herpes virus and the virus caused inflammation around his spinal cord. The plaintiff's disability insurer refused to provide the plaintiff with the benefits owed to him under an insurance contract. The insurer claimed that his injury was not the result of an accident as defined in his insurance policy. The BC Supreme Court and the BC Court of Appeal accepted the position of the plaintiff and awarded the benefits. Guy fought the case to the Supreme Court of Canada for the plaintiff.
Back to top
  
Aberdeen v. Township of Langley, Zanatta, Cassels Trial Decision
Court of Appeal
Richard acted for the plaintiff who suffered a spinal cord injury and a brain injury in an accident after he was forced off the road on his bicycle. The plaintiff was riding down a hill in Langley when a vehicle approaching in the opposite direction took a corner wide and came over a solid double line. The plaintiff moved to the right to avoid the vehicle and encountered a guard rail with a gap in it. The gap had been created by Langley years earlier during road construction. The plaintiff went through the gap and over a cliff. The defendants took the position that the plaintiff was responsible for the accident because he was travelling faster than the posted advisory speed of 30 kilometres per hour. The court found the driver of the vehicle was 25% at fault, Langley was 75% at fault, and the plaintiff was not to blame at all. The Court awarded the plaintiff $5.6 million in damages.

The case was appealed. The BC Court of Appeal upheld the damage award.
Back to top
  
Moses v. Kim Trial Decision
Court of Appeal
Guy acted for the plaintiff who was hit as a pedestrian while he was crossing the Trans Canada highway near Lytton, British Columbia. The Court found that both the plaintiff and the defendant failed to keep an adequate lookout and apportioned liability between them 65% to the plaintiff and 35% to the defendant. The plaintiff experienced serious injuries including compound fractures below both knees that required numerous surgeries. The Court awarded the plaintiff $623,000. ICBC appealed the case on behalf of the defendant driver who hit the plaintiff. The BC Court of Appeal dismissed the appeal.
Back to top
  
Karran v. Anderson First Trial
Court of Appeal
Second Trial
Richard acted for the plaintiff in a trial dealing with liability for a pedestrian accident. The case was hard fought and ultimately went to trial twice after being sent back for a re-trial by the BC Court of Appeal. The plaintiff was seriously injured when she crossed Howe Street at the intersection of Smithe Street in downtown Vancouver. It was a difficult case for the plaintiff because she was crossing against the pedestrian signal, during rush hour, and without looking for traffic to her left when she was hit by a vehicle traveling at 50 kilometres per hour and driven by the defendant who was proceeding through the intersection on a green light. ICBC took the position that the plaintiff was 100% responsible for the accident because the defendant entered the intersection on a green light. As a result of the collision the plaintiff was propelled 17.5 meters through the air before she came to rest on the other side of the intersection. Ultimately, following the second trial, because the defendant entered the intersection at 50 kilometres per hour, while there were other cars stopped at the crosswalk as he approached the intersection, the Court found the defendant to be partly at fault for the accident regardless of the fact that he had a green light.
Back to top
  
Hosseini v. ICBC Supreme Court of BC
Court of Appeal
Guy acted for the plaintiff who suffered a brain injury in an accident and then was involved in a complicated insurance battle with ICBC. The plaintiff had been involved in two accidents. He was at fault in the first accident and he was injured due to another person's negligence in the second accident. In the first accident there was $1.26 million dollar judgment made against the plaintiff. In the second accident the plaintiff was awarded a judgment of $1.25 million to compensate him for his brain injury. ICBC argued that the two claims should be set off against each other and ICBC should not have to pay the plaintiff any portion of the $1.25 million dollar judgment that was made to compensate him for his brain injury. Guy argued successfully at the BC Court of Appeal that ICBC had breached its duty to the plaintiff through its conduct in the case. As a result of the Court of Appeal's decision ICBC had to compensate the plaintiff for his $1.25 million dollar judgment up to the limits of the applicable insurance policy. The case is precedent setting because it clarifies ICBC's obligations to the people it insures in some situations.
Back to top
  
Al-Hendawi v. Sidhu Details
Richard acted for the plaintiff who suffered a disc herniation in his lower back when the vehicle he was travelling in was rear-ended. The plaintiff underwent surgery to have the disc repaired but suffered an infection following the surgery. The plaintiff was an obstetrician and gynecologist from Jordan who had immigrated to Canada and was attempting to obtain his licence to practise medicine in Canada when the accident happened. In order to gather evidence to support the case from doctors in Jordan who treated the plaintiff, Richard travelled to Jordan to meet with the doctors and the doctors testified during the trial in Vancouver via a live satellite link. The plaintiff was awarded $794,375 in damages by the trial Judge.
Back to top
  
Ruiz v. Bouaziz Details
Guy successfully argued at the trial level that the plaintiff's death was caused by the negligence of the surgeon who removed her gallbladder. The plaintiff's immediate family members were awarded damages up to the amount allowable in British Columbia pursuant to the Family Compensation Act. After the trial, the defendant appealed the trial Judge's decision and Guy represented the plaintiff at the Court of Appeal. Guy was successful at the Court of Appeal and the trial Judge's decision was upheld. In addition the Court of Appeal allowed a further claim under the Family Compensation Act by the plaintiff's stepson.
Back to top
  
McClelland et al v. Stewart et al Supreme Court Decision
Court of Appeal
Guy represented 22 women who were sexually assaulted by a doctor. In addition to the claim against the doctor personally, the British Columbia College of Physicians and Surgeons was named as a defendant in the case. It was alleged in the case that the College owed a duty of care to the women who had been assaulted and that the College must regulate its members to a reasonable standard in order to meet that duty. The College brought a pretrial application to strike out the claim against it and argued that it had no duty of care to the women who had been assaulted. The British Columbia Supreme Court held that the College of Physicians and Surgeons of British Columbia could owe a duty of care to the patients of the doctors it regulates. It was the first case in Canada where a lawsuit was permitted to proceed against a regulatory body for the actions of the professionals it regulates. The case was confirmed by the British Columbia Court of Appeal. The College sought leave to appeal the BC Court of Appeal's decision to the Supreme Court of Canada. The Supreme Court of Canada refused leave to appeal.
Back to top
  
Barsaloux v. ICBC Trial Decision
Costs Decision
Richard acted for the plaintiff after ICBC refused to pay for the plaintiff's stolen vehicle and claimed that the plaintiff had committed fraud and made a knowingly false declaration about who would drive the vehicle the majority of the time when the plaintiff insured the vehicle. The trial Judge found that the plaintiff hadn't made a knowingly false declaration and ordered that ICBC compensate the plaintiff for the stolen vehicle. In a subsequent decision on court costs, the trial Judge ordered ICBC to pay the plaintiff additional costs to compensate him for his legal fees. At paragraph 15 of the costs decision, the trial Judge discussed the imbalance of power between ICBC and its policy holders. At paragraph 18 of the costs decision, the trial Judge commented that ICBC had misused its position of financial strength to maintain an untenable and insufficiently considered position when it refused to pay the money owing to the plaintiff under the policy. The trial Judge then went on to order that ICBC pay double the amount of Court costs to the plaintiff that would normally have been payable to compensate him for his legal fees.
Back to top
  
Chapelski v. Bhatt Details
Richard acted for the plaintiff in a jury trial. ICBC insured the defendant and chose to pay the jury fees and have the trial heard by a jury. Richard made the plaintiff's opening statement to the jury on the first day of the trial and the first witnesses were called in the plaintiff's case. On the second morning of the trial ICBC changed its mind about the jury and the lawyer for ICBC brought a motion seeking an order that ICBC could cease paying the jury fees it was required to pay by the Jury Act and proceed before the judge alone without a jury. The trial Judge refused the application and commented at paragraph 20 that, "To permit such a re-election smacks of forum shopping and cannot be permitted." The trial continued before the jury and a favourable result was achieved for the plaintiff.
Back to top
  
  • Client Testimonials

    I developed chronic pain and fibromyalgia from a car accident. I hired Collette Parsons Harris* to act for me and they fought my case very hard for years. The defendants denied that I was injured leading up to the 15 day trial but Collette Parsons Harris* always had my back and went above and beyond the call of duty. They cared about me and my case and treated me with commitment and respect. We attended a mediation a few months before the trial but walked away when an insufficient offer was made. Weeks before the trial the defendants made an acceptable offer and my case settled. I don't know what I would have done without them. I have referred other people to Collette Parsons Harris* since my accident and I would highly recommend them to anyone, without question!

    K.L., Vancouver

    I live in Lake Tahoe California and I was involved in a head on collision with a jack-knifed semi trailer on a highway in central British Columbia. I suffered serious injuries that changed my life. I hired Collette Parsons to act for me and I was extremely happy with their work and the result in my case. Because Richard Parsons is licensed in British Columbia and California he was able to deal with the BC part of my case and my case against my own insurance company in California for refusing to pay my medical and disability benefits. I strongly recommend Collette Parsons Harris* to other Americans who are involved in accidents in Canada.

    S.M. Homewood, California

    I suffered a spinal cord injury and I was told it was my own fault and there was nothing I could do. I hired Collette Parsons Harris* and they reviewed my case and started a medical negligence case against the doctors who failed to diagnose me in time and against my accident benefits insurer. I recovered money in both cases and it made a big difference in my life.

    R.G., Vancouver

    Crossing at an intersection as pedestrians my grandparents were run down and seriously injured by an uninsured and unlicensed motorist. The claims department of ICBC falsely told my grandparents there was nothing that ICBC could do to help them because the driver was uninsured. As a fellow lawyer myself, practicing business law, I was able draw upon my resources and colleagues to retain the best legal representation available: Collette Parsons. My grandparents' claims were handled professionally and settled favorably at mediation.

    S.J., Vancouver BC

    I suffered a brain injury in an accident. Collette Parsons Harris* acted for me and my case was settled without having to go to trial. I am very happy to have the case behind me and to move on. I sincerely appreciate the professional, unbiased, and selfless approach Collette Parsons Harris* took in bring my case to conclusion. I am glad that I called them and I would recommend them to any friend or family member who was ever in need of their skills and service.

    C.E., Toronto

    I became disabled from physical and psychological injuries after I was in a car crash. I hired a law firm and they acted for me for a couple of years and then the law firm told me my case was too complicated for them and referred me to Collette Parsons Harris*. I hired Collette Parsons Harris* and they prepared my case for trial and my case settled at mediation. I would without question recommend Collette Parsons Harris*.

    D.T., Kamloops

    I suffered a brain injury in a car accident. I hired Collette Parsons Harris* and they fought my case very hard. My case settled prior to trial. I recommend Collette Parsons Harris* to anyone injured in an accident.

    P.A., Vancouver

    I became a quadriplegic after I fell from a ladder. I hired a law firm to act for me and after a year they told me they did not think I had a good case and they were unwilling to continue as my lawyers. Then I hired Collette Parsons to act for me. They examined the defendants in my case and sent me to see experts and got my case ready for trial. The insurance company made a settlement offer prior to trial and my case settled. The settlement will make a big difference in my life. I have complete trust in Collette Parsons and I recommend them to anyone who has been injured.

    B.B., Burnaby

  • Contact Us: 604-662-7777
    Toll-free: 1-800-999-4991

    1750 - 700 W Georgia Street
    PO Box 10090
    Vancouver, B.C. V7Y 1B6

    Email: info@colletteparsons.com