Family Law Act Claims
If someone in your family has been seriously injured, your life has probably been turned upside down. Your time may be spent traveling to doctors’ appointments and rehabilitation sessions. Perhaps they are unable to assist with childcare or housework due to their injuries, so you are taking on more day-to-day responsibilities. In some cases, you may be forced to miss work in order to provide personal care to an injured parent, child or other member of your family.
Claims for compensation under the Family Law Act by family members of an injured victim
If your loved one has suffered injuries as the result of someone else’s negligence, they may be considering a lawsuit to recover compensation for their injuries. In Ontario, the Family Law Act (“FLA”) allows close family members to advance claims related to their own loss of care, guidance and companionship as a result of the victim’s injuries.
Spouses, children, grandchildren, parents, grandparents and siblings are permitted to advance FLA claims. Although being biologically related is an important factor in deciding whether you have a claim, it is not strictly necessary. Adopted children are eligible, and in certain circumstances non-married adults in a permanent cohabitating relationships may bring a claim.
What compensation is available to an Family Law Act claimant?
As in any tort lawsuit, an FLA claimant may claim compensation for both special and general damages. General damages are non-pecuniary, and are assessed to compensate for the loss of guidance, care and companionship that the claimant might have reasonable have expected to receive if the injury had not occurred.
Special, or pecuniary damages, are available for the actual monetary losses that you have suffered as a result of their injuries. These may include:
- Any actual expenses you incurred on behalf of your family member, such as paying for their medication or assistive devices
- Funeral expenses
- Loss of income, if the victim was supporting you financially at the time they were injured
- An allowance to compensate for any housekeeping or child care that the victim can no longer provide
- Reimbursement for reasonable expenses incurred visiting them during treatment or recovery, for example if they were in hospital
Ontario personal injury lawyers representing accident victims and their families
If your family is coping to support someone with a serious personal injury, there may be options to pursue compensation for your lost income, time and expenses. At Derfel Injury Law, we regularly advance claims under the Family Law Act on behalf of children, parents, siblings and others. Our compassionate team of professionals will ensure that we explore every option, and represent your family’s best interests, so you can focus on recovery.