Damages Trilogy
Last revised January 27, 2020

The Damages Trilogy is a reference to three Supreme Court of Canada decisions from 1978, all of which involved catastrophically injured youths. These decisions helped shape the law regarding personal injury compensation in Canada. They created a rough upper monetary limit for non-pecuniary damages, but established that pecuniary damages were not subject to such ceilings. Except in exceptional circumstances, the limit for non-pecuniary damages was set at $100,000. This figure has since been increased to take inflation into account and now sits in the $350,000 range.

The three judgments that make up the Damages Trilogy:

Andrews v. Grand & Toy Alberta Ltd. 

Young adult rendered quardriplegic in a traffic accident - Principles in the assessment of damages

Arnold v. Teno 

Young child struck by car while recrossing street after purchasing ice cream from vending truck - Apportionment of liability - Assessment of damages

Thorton v. Prince George School District No. 57 

Teenager rendered quardriplegic in an accident in a physical education class - Principles in the assessment of damages


"instructional" "noteworthy case" "common phrase" "history" "quantum"