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Types of Damages in Personal Injury Claims in Alberta

If you are hurt while living, working, or holidaying in Alberta you may need to file a personal injury case. Sadly, accidents happen more frequently than we like to think.

For example, every winter, around 15,000 people hurt themselves so badly when they slip on ice, in Alberta, that they have to attend hospital. Every year, around 17,500 people are injured in traffic accidents that occur in the area.

The fact that you can be injured anywhere, any time means that it is important to understand how to make a personal injury claim in Alberta. Below we explain when you can claim for and how we can help. 

Basics of Personal Injury Damages in Alberta

Most of the damages claimed for in personal injury cases in Alberta are classified as compensatory. As that word implies, compensatory damages are intended to compensate the injured party for what was lost due to their being hurt.

There are two kinds of compensatory damages you can claim for – general and special damages. Below, we explain what each of them is.

Categories of Damages in Personal Injury Claims in Alberta

General damages are those that someone who has been hurt will almost inevitably suffer from. For example, if you are hurt, your enjoyment of life will be negatively affected, and you will experience pain and suffering.

Calculating how much will be awarded for general damages is tricky because there are many different factors in play. Because nobody knows how long recovery from the injury will take or how it will affect a specific individual, some of these losses or damages will be unknown and, therefore, difficult to quantify.

Special damages, on the other hand, are those damages that do not arise in every single case. However, they can usually be measured and quantified. For example, loss of earnings falls into this category. Special damages are only recoverable when they are not beyond the reasonable contemplation of the parties.

Common Types of Damages in Personal Injury Claims in Alberta

These are the most common types of damages you can claim for in Alberta:

  • Cost of medical care – These include medical bills, the cost of drugs, and rehabilitation. This is for your past and any ongoing medical costs you are likely to face.
  • Loss of income – If an injury affects a person’s capacity to earn income in the past and the future, they can claim for those losses.
  • Loss of property – This kind of compensation is paid to cover the cost of any property or belongings that were destroyed or damaged because of the accident.
  • Pain and suffering – This is known as a non-pecuniary general damage. The aim here is to compensate the injured party for the pain, emotional and mental anguish they have suffered or will continue to endure. For more information on pecuniary and non-pecuniary damages, read our guide.
  • Housekeeping and home maintenance costs – When your injuries mean that you have not been able to clean and maintain your home yourself, you can claim this type of compensation. If you are likely to have to continue to pay for these services in the future those costs can be covered as well.

Know what damages may be awarded if you get injured in an accident in Alberta. Talk to a Diamond & Diamond personal injury lawyer now.

Contact an Alberta personal injury lawyer from Diamond & Diamond today

You can do so by calling our 1-800 number

Visiting any of our office locations in Alberta

Or by using our online contact form that is available on this website 


“When it comes to personal injury claims, it always pays to build your case from the onset — collect and preserve as much evidence as you can and never forget to account for future expenses.”

FAQs on Types of Damages in Personal Injury Claims in Alberta

Is there a cap on damages in personal injury claims under Alberta law?

Alberta law does not cap the amount of personal injury compensation that can be paid. But under national law, there is a cap on how much can be claimed for personal injuries. The maximum claim amount you can claim for general damages grows each year.  As of 2020, for those kinds of losses Canadians can only receive a maximum of around $391,450. Whereas for special damages there is no cap.

If a loved one perishes, are there additional damages awarded apart from the usual damages?

If a loved one is killed this would be categorized as wrongful death. In that situation, a surviving spouse, common-law partner, parents, grandparents, siblings, or children could all potentially sue for compensation. The resultant payout can cover a long list of damages including, loss of earnings, funeral costs, payment for emotional suffering, and therapy bills.

Should I still file a personal injury claim if my health insurance paid my medical expenses?

It is still possible to file a personal injury claim even if your health insurance paid your medical bills. You will still need to be compensated for things like loss of earnings, pain, and suffering, the loss of personal property, and a few other things. Plus, in many cases, you will also want to claim for ongoing medical costs, which are not likely to be covered by your health insurance provider.

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