Seeking Compensation for an Ankle Injury

By Roger Foisy on September 19th, 2014

Throughout my years as an Ontario Personal Injury Lawyer, I have helped many clients with ankle injuries receive proper compensation. Unfortunately, many people do not think an ankle injury is particularly serious; however, I have found that this type of injury can have a large impact on a person’s daily life.

How Do Ankle Injuries Typically Happen?

Ankle injuries that qualify for personal injury cases are typically sustained in one of two ways, although there are many exceptions.

In my experience, a slip, trip, and fall is one of the most common ways people sustain an ankle injury for which they can make a personal injury claim.

These are often Occupiers’ Liability cases, where the owner of the property is responsible for the safety of guests and visitors. This applies to both commercial and residential properties. If the property has not been properly maintained, causing a slip, trip, and fall injury, the victim can seek compensation from the owner of the property.

Motor Vehicle Accidents

Another common cause of ankle injuries are motor vehicle accidents. Motor vehicle accidents can include vehicle collisions with: other vehicles, a motorcycle or bicycle, or a pedestrian.

In these cases, the victim can seek compensation from their own no-fault accident benefits insurer and/or the owner/driver of the vehicle at fault.

Seeking Compensation for an Ankle Injury

How Severe Are Ankle Injuries?

The ankle is comprised of the tibia (shin bone) and the fibula (smaller bone on the outside of the ankle). An ankle fracture can range in severity, depending on which of these bones are injured and to what extent. As these bones are closely connected in the body, I have frequently seen clients with an ankle fracture involving both the fibula and the tibia.

These tibia-fibula fractures are generally more serious than a single fracture, and can sometimes require surgery to be corrected. When the ankle injury requires surgery, the injured person can expect to be prescribed therapy by their orthopedic surgeon, and they will have a longer recovery period.

Seeking Compensation for Ankle Injuries

If you have sustained an ankle injury and are seeking compensation, the most important factor in receiving a fair settlement is your ability to accurately demonstrate and explain the impact the injury has had on your life.

The first consideration is your pain and suffering. Many people with ankle injuries find they are experiencing throbbing and sharp pain. Be sure to accurately describe your pain to your doctors (click here for a video explanation of how to effectively describe pain). The information you provide to your doctors will be used to validate the extent of your injury, so be specific.

While your level of pain and your physical symptoms are important, the most essential consideration is what your ankle injury prevents you from being able to do. This includes tasks related to your employment, child-care, household chores, recreational activities, and so on.

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An ankle injury can have a devastating effect on your life, particularly if your job requires you to be physically able. In some cases, you may never be able to return to the same type of physical work you were doing before the accident, and will need to be vocationally trained for a new occupation.

Even if your employment is sedentary and you work at a desk, an ankle injury can have a detrimental effect. Many of my clients have found that the constant ankle pain causes significant loss of concentration, which makes it difficult for them to complete thinking tasks. On top of this, some are on medication that makes them tired and groggy. Most sedentary jobs require concentration and mental acuity; therefore, an ankle injury can prevent you from doing a desk job at your full capacity until you recover.

If your ankle injury significantly impacts your ability to do your job, you can make a higher general damages claim.

Depending on the severity of your ankle injury, you may have trouble doing regular tasks at home as well. You may need help with duties such as cooking, bathing, dressing yourself, driving, and so on. You may become dependent on your spouse, child, or even a co-worker for a time.

I recommend working with an Occupational Therapist (OT). The OT will work with you to adjust your environment and life to accommodate your injury as you undergo healing and treatment.  An OT is  concerned with getting you back to a normal life, making modifications wherever your injury has made your regular activities problematic for you.

An OT will also assess the safety of your environments. For example, if your bedroom or workplace is not on the ground floor, an OT will look at how difficult it would be for you to exit the building in case of an emergency.

When an OT completes his or her comprehensive assessment of your life before your accident and the difficulties you are having following your accident, the assessment assists me in better quantifying your claims. This helps me to precisely demonstrate the damages you have sustained.

An ankle fracture has a greater impact on your life than simply having pain in your ankle. I always take the time to understand my client’s life and responsibilities before their accident, which allows me to ensure I do not under-settle your case. You need a lawyer who will quantify every bit of damage and get you the best settlement possible.

>> If you have sustained an ankle injury or other personal injury at another party’s fault, please do not hesitate to contact me and my team of experienced Ontario personal injury lawyers for a free consultation.

*Roger R. Foisy is not a medical professional. The advice in this blog is not meant to be a substitute for medical advice.

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