Understand the compensation of road accident victims

Bien comprendre l’indemnisation des accidentés de la route

The holidays will be in Quebec this summer, which could well be reflected in the number of accidents on our road network.

But how the Société d’assurance automobile du Québec (SAAQ) compensates for the rough terrain of the road ?

An insurance company

Note that the SAAQ is not a different insurance company—. It picks up with all the motorists premiums according to the allowances that it intends to pay to victims of accidents.

The money raised is directed to an “insurance fund” managed by the Caisse de dépôt. The health of this fund depends on the road safety record and the financial markets.

Every three years, the premiums of insured are revalued based on the funded level of the fund. For example, the number of claims has decreased by 60 % during the pandemic compared to the same period in previous years. This decrease should be reflected in the cost of registration and driving licences.

When some victims claim that the SAAQ has no heart, they are not wrong. The insurers work with codes, procedures and actuarial calculations, and not empathy.

Loss of quality of life

The money paid by the SAAQ does not compensate never the loss of quality of life resulting from a car accident. This is not the goal. In this regard, the maximum lump-sum payment that can receive a rough road rises to 256 383 $ in 2020. Made there, the victim has little chance to enjoy his money, because he must be in a coma, the vegetative growth to reach the maximum.

The calculation of the benefits depends on a host of factors, including the consequences of “functional” and ” aesthetic “, as well as their duration. The victim does she have trouble moving a member ? Keep-does it have a scar ? There is a comprehensive directory of sequelae, each developed on a scale of severity.

Also, the compensation associated with each of the sequels do not add up. For example, the indemnity for the loss of two eyes is greater than two times the amount awarded for the loss of a single eye. The reason is obvious : the accident has rendered blind. In short, you must be an expert to apply the grid to the SAAQ.

The disability point of contention

The SAAQ pays more compensation to cover all sorts of expenses, costs of care, home help, medical care, etc It also compensates for loss of work income. It covers 90 % of the salary (from 78 up to $ 500). It should be noted that self-employed workers who deduct many of the expenses may be disadvantaged by this method of calculation.

With the SAAQ as the CNESST and private insurance companies, all goes well until the day when the insurer considers that the insured is able to return to work. The SAAQ may stop paying or reduce the amounts paid out as soon as it determines that a caller can hold a job, no matter which.

It is around these issues that erupt more often than the wars of medical experts. In case the pain will be invisible : a sore back and neck, migraines, depressions, disabling… With the years, there were enough contentious issues to foster the emergence of an association to defend the interests of victims of road accidents with the SAAQ.

A word of advice to rough

Melanie Patenaude, former employee of the SAAQ, is today director general of the Association for the rights of accident victims. Herself a victim of an accident, it is advised to not delay to consult a physician following an accident, even for a pain that seems benign, because the evil can degenerate.

It is crucial to establish as early as possible the link between the pain and the accident. Often, it is this relationship that the experts of the SAAQ question.

Be careful on the roads.

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