Morrisey v. Wawanesa Insurance Company (2022 4398)

The claimant was injured in an accident in 2000, while the 1996 SABS applied. In 2018, the claimant filed a LAT dispute for (among other things) retroactive attendant care benefits. The Tribunal found the claimant was not entitled to retroactive ACBs because he had no excuse for the late Form 1. The Tribunal also held that the incurred expense definition applied to the claimant’s ACBs going forward, and that he was entitled to interest at the rate of 1 percent per month for overdue ACBs. The claimant appealed all three findings. The Divisional Court granted the appeal with respect to interest, holding that the Divisional Court decision in Federico v. State Farm, and the Court of Appeal’s decision in Sidhu v. State Farm, governed the outcome and that two percent interest applied for all claims related to accidents prior to September 2010. The Court dismissed the appeal on the other issues. The Court agreed that the Tribunal correctly held that the claimant was required to show why there was a delay in submitting his Form 1, and that the Tribunal’s conclusions related to the claimant’s arguments were questions of fact that were not open to appeal. The Court also agreed that the Tribunal correctly held that the incurred expense definition applied to all ACBs claims after September 2010 because the definition was a procedural change rather than a substantive change to the SABS.

Gichuki v TD Insurance Meloche Monnex (20-004631)

The claimant sought entitlement to attendant care benefits in the amount of $7,644.34, less $225.75 approved by the insurer, per month, from May 22, 2018 and ongoing. Vice Chair McGee found that attendant care benefits were not payable prior to October 31, 2019 when she submitted an Assessment of Attendant Care Needs (Form 1), pursuant to section 42(5) of the SABS. In submissions, the claimant significantly narrowed the scope of her claim, seeking payment only for her incurred expenses, equal to $220.32 per month. The attendant care services were provided by the claimant’s friend and personal support worker. Despite their friendship, Vice Chair McGee accepted that the provider qualified as a professional service provider who provided the claimant with services in the course of a profession in which she would ordinarily have been engaged but for the claimant. The timesheets provided established that the claimant received a total of 33 hours of attendant care between November 2020 and February 2021. As such, Vice Chair McGee found that the claimant was entitled to be reimbursement for 33 hours of attendant care expenses, payable at a rate of $14.00 per hour (per the Rate Guideline), for a total of $462.00, with interest.

Micanovic v. Intact Insurance (2022 ONSC 1566)

The claimant appealed a production order made by the Tribunal for him to produce personal and corporate income tax records from his housekeeping provider. The Divisional Court granted the appeal and set aside the order. The Court explained that even though the production order was interlocutory, the order was “fatally flawed” and had to be set aside. First, the Tribunal erred in its understanding of the housekeeping claim. The productions were ordered produced on the belief that an economic loss was being advanced by the claimant and service provider. To the contrary, the housekeeper stated that she was acting in the course of employment though a company that existed prior to the claimant’s accident. Second, the Tribunal believed that the housekeeping provider was the spouse of the claimant. That finding was an error and not supported by any evidence, nor argued by either party. Finally, the claimant had no control or power to produce the records of the housekeeper, and could therefore not be ordered to produce the records.

Gupta v. TD Insurance Meloche Monnex (19-010353)

The claimant applied to the LAT seeking entitlement to the cost of examinations, post-104 IRBs, ACBs, and a special award. The claimant was involved in a motor vehicle accident in 2016. Her injuries were found to include post-concussion syndrome and chronic pain. She received long-term disability benefits until 2020 (when she received an advance buyout of her long-term disability benefits) and CPP Disability benefits from 2017 to 2020. Adjudicator Grant did not find the s. 44 post-104 IRB reports compelling, as the opinions were provided individually and there was no consideration of the combined impact of the claimant’s impairments on her ability to return to work. Adjudicator Grant found that the claimant was entitled to post-104 IRBs and a neuropsychological cognitive assessment. She was not entitled to a language pathology assessment. The claimant did not have the financial means to pay for attendant care services. As such, Adjudicator Grant found that the claimant had failed to prove that she incurred any ACBs, and she was not entitled to payment of ACBs. Finally, Adjudicator Grant found that the insurer’s failure to provide s. 44 assessors with all the clinical notes and records of the claimant did not meet the threshold for granting an award, and the claim for a special award was dismissed.

Micu v. The Personal Insurance Company (20-006746)

The claimant sought entitlement to attendant care benefits in the amount of $3,079.00 per month. At issue in the hearing was whether the claimant: (a) had proven that she incurred expenses for attendant care, and (b) the service provider sustained an economic loss due to providing attendant care services. The claimant submitted that her partner sustained an economic loss of $778.00 per month while providing attendant care services, as the partner had reduced her work scheduled by one 8-hour shift per week to accommodate the claimant’s care needs. Upon review of the partner’s income and employment documentation, Vice Chair McGee found no marked difference her pre-accident and post-accident hours of work and earnings. Vice Chair McGee noted that while she was sensitive to the impact the accident had likely had on the claimant and her partner, the SABS reflected a clear intention on the part of the legislature to compensate non-professional attendant care providers only up to the amount of the economic loss. As the claimant had failed to establish that her partner had suffered monthly economic loss, she had not met her onus in proving that she incurred the claimed attendant care services, and the claim was dismissed.

Micu v. The Personal Insurance Company (20-006746)

The claimant sought entitlement to attendant care benefits in the amount of $3,079.00 per month. At issue in the hearing was whether the claimant: (a) had proven that she incurred expenses for attendant care, and (b) the service provider sustained an economic loss due to providing attendant care services. The claimant submitted that her partner sustained an economic loss of $778.00 per month while providing attendant care services, as the partner had reduced her work scheduled by one 8-hour shift per week to accommodate the claimant’s care needs. Upon review of the partner’s income and employment documentation, Vice Chair McGee found no marked difference her pre-accident and post-accident hours of work and earnings. Vice Chair McGee noted that while she was sensitive to the impact the accident had likely had on the claimant and her partner, the SABS reflected a clear intention on the part of the legislature to compensate non-professional attendant care providers only up to the amount of the economic loss. As the claimant had failed to establish that her partner had suffered monthly economic loss, she had not met her onus in proving that she incurred the claimed attendant care services, and the claim was dismissed.

Frymus v. Aviva Insurance Canada (19-000055)

The claimant applied to the LAT for entitlement to ACBs. Vice-Chair McGee found that the claimant failed to prove entitlement to ACBs for the relevant time period. It was undisputed that the claimant was entitled to attendant care directly following the accident. At issue before the Tribunal was whether the claimant submitted appropriate proof of the services he incurred, and whether he established that his wife, who had provided his care, had sustained economic loss as a result. The Tribunal found that it had no power to order the payment of expenses incurred before submission of Form 1, limiting the claimant’s overall entitlement. Further, the claimant failed to establish his wife’s economic loss. The tax returns submitted showed a decrease in her annual income but did not establish what that income would have been but for the attendant care services. The wife’s income for the two years prior to the accident showed fluctuations as well, and without more information it was not possible to make a final determination.

Fahritdinov v. Aviva General Insurance (19-009897)

The claimant sought entitlement to NEBs and ACBs. Adjudicator Norris concluded that the claimant was not entitled to the benefits claimed. The claimant sustained injuries to his neck, shoulder, back, and knee as a result of the accident and required surgical intervention. Adjudicator Norris found that while the claimant may have experienced some changes to his life, he failed to demonstrate that he suffered a complete inability to carry on a normal life as a result of accident-related impairments. Thus, the claimant was not entitled to NEBs. Similarly, the claimant required attendant care services immediately following the June 20, 2018 surgery on his right knee. However, Adjudicator Norris found that the claimant had recovered from the surgery and no longer needed the assistance claimed. There was nothing in the evidence to suggest that the benefit was incurred, or that it was not incurred due to the insurer unreasonably withholding payment. There was a difference between what the Form 1 said and what the claimant reported to his assessors regarding his personal care abilities. He reported that he showered and completed most of his housekeeping and home maintenance tasks independently and that he had no limitations with respect to personal care. The application was dismissed.

Aviva Insurance Company of Canada v. Suarez (2021 ONSC 6200)

The insurer appealed the Tribunal’s decision awarding four treatment plans for chiropractic therapy, two as reasonable and necessary, and two others due to non-compliant section 38 notices. The insurer argued that because the claimant had not received the treatment, she was not permitted to apply to the LAT. The Court rejected the insurer’s position, holding that the claimant did not have to receive treatment prior to disputing her entitlement. The Court agreed, however, that payment for the treatment plans was not required until the claimant incurred the treatment. The Court also preserved the insurer’s ability to dispute payment upon receipt of invoices and incurred expenses, and held that interest was only payable once the treatment was incurred.

M.N. v. Aviva General Insurance (19-001788 and 19-007595)

The claimant sought entitlement to attendant care benefits in the amount of $272.46 per month. Adjudicator Ferguson noted that to be payable, attendant care benefits must be incurred by the claimant, as defined by section 3(7) of the SABS, but the claimant submitted no evidence of same. The claimant relied on section 3(8) of the SABS, which allows the Tribunal to deem expenses incurred where an insurer has acted unreasonably, arguing that the insurer ignored the submitted Form 1. Adjudicator Ferguson felt that it would be inappropriate to deem the expenses incurred, given that the claimant had not taken any steps to obtain, source, or price any potential attendant care, as well as the lack evidence that any family member or other person would have incurred any economic loss in providing attendant care. There was no persuasive evidence that the claimant would have incurred this expense if not for the inaction of the insurer, and as such, the claim for attendant care benefits was dismissed.