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Accident Case Involving Dominatrix Attracts Vancouver Media Attention

A recent personal injury case from Vancouver has been making headlines recently - due primarily to the fact that one of the plaintiffs became a dominatrix subsequent to the accident.

When the case is stripped of such details that tend to attract the attention of local media, there are still matters discussed in this case that are applicable to a wide-range of motor vehicle cases. First, the importance of an early and comprehensive investigation if there are any questions as to who was at fault for the accident.  

Further, the difficult questions that the Judge must consider when trying to assess the impact of the accident on the future of a young person who has sustained serious injury.

In the case that is now front and centre in our local media, the underlying accident was a single vehicle accident on the Trans-Canada highway where the driver's Tacoma ended up leaving the roadway at a high-rate of speed, coming to rest in a ditch. The defendant driver of the vehicle did not accept that he was liable for the accident, arguing instead that the accident was inevitable due to the road conditions at the time.

This is not an unusual position for a defendant driver to take when an accident does not involve another vehicle.

In such circumstances, it is often critical to the success of an injured person's case to involve a lawyer as quickly as possible. Your lawyer can then immediately begin the process of investigating the cause of the accident - interviewing witnesses, contacting the police and possibly retaining accident reconstruction experts, such as engineers. These steps were taken in this case and the young woman was able to prove that the driver's negligence caused the accident.

Further, the decision also demonstrates the difficulties associated with trying to assess the manner in which an accident has impacted the future earning potential of a young person.

At the time of the accident, the future dominatrix was still a high-school student. Her future career was not known, but she appeared by all accounts to be headed for a fairly bright future. The defendants conceded in the case that the young woman had suffered a brain injury from the accident, but there was a considerable dispute as to its severity.

Counsel for the young woman argued, in part, that her career path as a dominatrix supported a finding that her brain injury was quite severe - showing that she was willing to accept unnecessary risks to "pay the rent and pay for food."

The Judge accepted this argument and, after comparing the projected career path for the young woman before the accident to the path she appeared able to take at the time of trial, awarded her $825,000 for loss of future capacity.

To properly put forward a claim for future earnings loss for a young person, it is critical that the injured person's lawyer does everything possible to ensure that evidence is called at trial from which the Judge can reasonably determine how the person's future career path has been altered by the accident.

This type of evidence can sometimes be difficult to marshal and it is often beneficial in such circumstances to have advice from an injury lawyer with particular expertise acting for young people who have been injured. 

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