But if a loved one has been in a fatal accident, survivors may also be eligible for specific benefits by filing a wrongful death claim. While it may seem unsavory to profit off of the tragic death of a loved one, there are many costs that will be passed on to you that you may not be able to handle, not to mention the loss of income and loss of care, guidance and companionship that losing a loved one entails.
The Statutory Accident Benefits Schedule outlines who is eligible for compensation, what they are eligible for, and how much they are entitled to receive depending on the nature of the motor vehicle accident. Additional compensation may also be available to you in case of any wrongful death through the Family Law Act.
After a vehicle accident, the Statutory Accident Benefits Schedule determines death benefit payments to the deceased’s spouse, dependents, and persons “to whom the insured person had an obligation at the time of the accident”. These amounts range from $6,000 to $25,000 if no other optional insurance benefits have been purchased, and can go a long way towards taking care of funeral expenses, settling debts, and ensuring the bereaved have the appropriate amount of time to grieve without worrying about loss of income.
The Family Law Act further grants the right of dependents to sue in tort, stating:
If a person is injured or killed by the fault or neglect of another under circumstances where the person is entitled to recover damages, or would have been entitled if not killed, the spouse, as defined in Part III, children, grandchildren, parents, grandparents, brothers and sisters of the person are entitled to recover their pecuniary loss resulting from the injury or death from the person from whom the person injured or killed is entitled to recover or would have been entitled if not killed, and to maintain an action for the purpose in a court of competent jurisdiction.
Damages that can be sought include funeral, travel, and medical expenses as well as loss of income. Other damages include “an amount to compensate for the loss of guidance, care and companionship that the claimant might reasonably have expected to receive from the person if the death had not occurred”.