A claim for negligent treatment of injuries suffered in a motor vehicle accident may be statute barred in Saskatchewan

22. January 2009 0

Saskatchewan’s Automobile Accident Insurance Act bars a claim for damages against physiotherapists where the original injuries arose out of or stemmed from a motor vehicle accident.

Hill v. Saskatchewan Government Insurance, [2008] S.J. No. 662, Saskatchewan Court of Queen’s Bench, R.L. Barclay J., October 23, 2008

This judgment involved two applications.  The first application was brought by the City of Saskatoon to strike out a portion of the Statement of Claim that alleged that the Defendant Saskatoon Transit was negligent while operating a Saskatoon transit bus when it was struck by a car on the driver’s side.  The Plaintiff was a passenger on the bus and received injuries for which she claims damages.

The second application arose out of an allegation that the Defendant physiotherapists were negligent in respect of the care given to the Plaintiff after the accident and she suffered further injury which were caused by their actions.

In each application, the Defendants alleged that the claims were barred pursuant to the provisions of the Automobile Accident Insurance Act, R.S.S. 1978, c.A-35.  Section 40.1 of the Automobile Accident Insurance Act provides that a person has no right of action “respecting, arising out of or stemming” from bodily injuries caused by a motor vehicle accident.  The Court observed that the intent of the legislation is not to determine what caused the bodily injuries, but rather whether an automobile was involved in the accident that resulted in the bodily injury.  As such, both applications were allowed.  The Court found that the Plaintiff’s claim was statute barred based on the finding that the alleged injuries “arose out of or stemmed from” a motor vehicle accident.

This case was originally summarized by Cameron B. Elder and originally edited by David W. Pilley.

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