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No Jury for Complex Brain Injury Case

The Supreme Court ruled this accident injury claim too difficult for a jury. The ruling of Master Dick found the injury case required prolonged examination of documents and scientific investigation.  The Master allowed the application to be heard after the filing of a second Jury Notice, which appears to have extended the time for applying to strike the jury(Forstved v. Kokabi,2018 BCSC 1878).
The claim arises from a motor vehicle accident in Langley, British Columbia. The claimant was a 49 year old self employed businessman at the time of the accident.
There was serious disagreement as to whether the claimant suffered a concussion or a mild traumatic brain injury in the accident. The experts rely on different medical definitions for concussion and brain injury.
The claimant said that he would be calling at least 23 witnesses, 11 are experts and  there are at least 22 expert reports. I addition, the loss of earnings claim will be complex. As the Master stated,

[54]  If I was just considering the number of experts, the expert’s use of terminology, the volume of medical evidence, and divergent opinions alone, that would not necessarily cause me to strike the jury in this case. What makes this case more difficult is the fact the plaintiff’s income and business losses are not straightforward. The jury will have to review and understand the plaintiff and his spouse’s income tax information as well as the financial statements from all of the corporations he owned. The jury will then have to analyze, understand, and interpret the documents to assess his income and business loss.

The Master exercised his discretion to strike the jury notice and ordered that the trial of this personal injury case be heard by judge alone.
Posted by Personal Injury Lawyer Mr. Renn A. Holness, B.A. LL.B.
 
 

Tags: Rule 12-6(3) Notice Requiring Trial by Jury, Rule 12-6(5)(a) Court may refuse jury trial, Strike Jury Notice

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