Statutory Accident Benefits
In Ontario, anyone who is injured in a motor vehicle accident is entitled to no-fault insurance accident benefits; even if you were struck as a pedestrian or a cyclist and do not have automobile insurance. These benefits (also referred to as the SABS) are available even if you were at fault for the accident.
Some of the benefits you may be entitled to receive under the SABS include:
Medical and Rehabilitation Benefits
The SABS provides coverage for treatment you may require for your injuries. Medical coverage that is available includes expenses for massage, psychology, physiotherapy and speech language therapy, to name a few. If someone has suffered very serious injuries, the rehabiliation benefit can include benefits such as expenses to be re-trained at college/university and home modifications or the purchase of a new home if medically required, among other things.
Income Replacement Benefit
If within two years from the accident you are unable to work, you may be entitled to an Income Replacement Benefit (IRB). The income replacement benefit is limited to 70% of your gross income and a maximum of $400 per week. However, if you have purchased optional insurance benefits, your IRB could be as high as $600 or $800 per month. If you were self-employed you may be entitled to additional IRB benefits.
Non-earner benefits are weekly payments given to accident victims who are not eligible for an income replacement benefit.
The non-earner benefit is only available if you suffer a complete inability to carry on a normal life. To determine if you suffer a complete inability to carry on a normal life, the insurance company will review the activities you performed before the accident and compare it to what you can do now.
If you are eligible, the non-earner benefit is $185 per week. If your accident was before June 1, 2016, this benefit is payable until age 65 (and then paid beyond at 65 at a reduced rate) or as long as you have a complete inability to carry on a normal life. If you were a student at the time of the accident, this sum will increase to $320 per week after 2 years. If your accident was on after June 1, 2016, the Ontario Government has reduced the benefit; instead of being payable to age 65, it is only available for a maximum of two years at the rate of $185 per week. It is not payable for the first four weeks after the accident and does not increase to $320 for students who suffer a complete inability to carry on a normal life.
Attendant Care Benefit
If you have sustained more than a minor injury and require personal care, you are eligible for attendant care benefits. Attendant care benefits include personal care assistance such as cooking, bathing, cleaning, dressing and mobility, depending on the level of injury that has been suffered.
The caregiver benefit is only available if you have suffered a catastrophic injury or if you have purchased additional optional benefits. If you fall under one of these two categories, the caregiver is available if you were the primary caregiver for someone at the time of the accident and are substantially unable to resume your caregiving responsibilities.
The caregiver benefit pays $250 per week if you have one dependant and an additional $50 per week for each additional dependent.
Housekeeping and Home Maintenance Benefits
Like the caregiver benefit, the housekeeping and home maintenance benefit is only available if you have suffered a catastrophic injury or if you have purchased additional optional benefits.
The housekeeping and home maintenance benefit provides up to $100 per week of expenses to assist with things like vacuuming, washing the floors, dusting, mowing the lawn, snow removal, etc.
When hiring a lawyer it is important not only that he or she practises in the area of personal injury and car accident claims, but also that he or she is experienced in Statutory Accident Benefit claims. Without this expertise, your lawyer may not be able to adequately assist and provide the necessary advice and recommendations regarding all of the possible benefits that may be available to you.
Our injury lawyers have substantial experience and have handled hundreds of complex Statutory Accident Benefit claims.
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