Presentation on theme: "Non-pecuniary (moral) losses in case of injury to body and health – Comparative perspectives XIII. AIDA Budapest Insurance Colloquium 27-28 November 2014."— Presentation transcript:
Non-pecuniary (moral) losses in case of injury to body and health – Comparative perspectives XIII. AIDA Budapest Insurance Colloquium November 2014 „Solatium doloris from liability insurance point of view – new challenges and questions, possible answers” Dr. Habil. Ádám Fuglinszky LL.M. (Heidelberg) PhD (Hamburg) Associate Professor, Eötvös Loránd University (ELTE), Budapest,
Overview I. Non pecuniary loss: characteristics and challenges II. Structural questions II. Structural questions – 1. Infringement of personality rights non-pecuniary loss – 2. Functional analysis No. 1: „Why?” – 3. Functional analysis No. 2: „How?” – 4. Lump sum categories – 5. The amount (flexibility, individualization, justice standardization + predictability) III. Combinations III. Combinations IV. Secondary victims, relational losses IV. Secondary victims, relational losses – 1. Accessory claims? / legal basis? – 2. Prerequisites / limits / exclusions – 3. Amounts
I. Non pecuniary loss: characteristics and challenges 1) Expressing in terms of money: „just as like you wished to see yourself while asleep” (Prof. Lábady) missing: – no a priori assigned values (upper limit) – no chance of ‘in integrum restitutio’ ► functional analysis – no a priori decisive aspects on the amount 2) Public law impacts 3) Impact of the economic/financial capacity of the society 4) Fairness, Justice, Flexibility Predictability, Certainty of the law (a like cases a like) 5) Individualization Standardization 6) Temptation: let’s replace the complicated tort law by no fault (insurance) system, cf. – Québec: Automobile Insurance Act, RSQ, c A-25, art. 73, max $ 175,000 – New Zealand: Accident Compensation Act 2001
II. Structural questions 1. Infringement of personality rights non- pecuniary loss Non pecuniary loss (reparation/compensation theory) ► non- pecuniary loss is the prerequisite of damages Infringement of personality right (personality right theory) ► non-pecuniary loss effects amount only (Hungary before the new Civil Code: non-pecuniary damages Mere unpleasure, anger, upset, disappointment, anxiety? Generally Ø, only if recognizable psychiatric illness…)
II. Structural questions 2. Functional analysis No 1: „Why?” Reparation/Compensation only? Prevention? Punishment/deterrence??? – are there punitive damages in the legal system – ne bis in idem – liability insurance – grade of fault among the decisive factors? ►practical relevance: a.o. victim in coma?
II. Structural questions 3. Functional analysis No. 2: „How?” Conceptual/objective approach (QC) – the injury/disability itself ≈ loss of an „immaterial resource” Personal/subjective approach – the particular suffering Functional approach: reasonable solace for the suffered misfortune (common law, Hungary, etc.) ► practical relevance: – impact on decisive factors – a.o. victim in coma? Austria, France: + / Netherlands debated, but rather Ø / Scotland Ø ► functional approach as synthesis? ► „fine tuning”? (cf. coma)
II. Structural questions 4. Lump sum categories Common law – Pain and suffering – Loss of amenities / loss of enjoyment of life – Loss of expectation of life – Disfigurement – Psychological losses (if ever…) France – Pretium doloris or souffrances morales ou physiques – Préjudice d’agrément (loss of amenity or loss of well being, also in coma) – Préjudice esthétique (also in coma) – Préjudice sexuel Spain/ Portugal: – more or less as in France – perjuicio juvenil / pretium juventutis: impairment of the ability to live out one’s youth
II. Structural questions 5. The amount (flexibility, individualization, justice standardization + predictability) 5.1. Free discretion without tables and charts (Hungary, before the new Civil Code), decisive factors: – Circumstances of the victim: age / the way of living has changed / moving possibilities / additional psychical factors / ability to work or to study – Impact on social relations (family, friends, free time activities, risk of isolation and loneliness) – The injury itself (severity, time of recovery, temporary/permanent, etc.) – Loss of earning capacity (non-pecuniary aspects as f.e. vocation) – Impacts on sexual life / loss of chance of having children – Grade of fault? (Financial situation of the victim and of the tortfeasor? Ø)
II. Structural questions 5.2. Free discretion with non binding tables and charts in the practice NL: Smartengeldbundel (Verkeersrecht) F: medical experts: a.o. Association pour l'étude de la réparation du dommage corporel / „loterie judiciaire” – pretium doloris / souffrances physiques et morales / Thierry tables très léger (very light) / léger (light) / modéré (moderate) / moyen (medium) / assez important (quite severe) / important (severe) / très important (very severe) between € 1,000 (1,500) – 15,000 (25,000; 30,000) – préjudice esthétique medical expert gives points between 0 and 7 + sex + age + marital status + occupation
II. Structural questions 5.2. Free discretion with non binding tables and charts in the practice D: Schmerzensgeld (§ 253 BGB) + Tabellen (orientation) A: Schmerzensgeld (§ 1325 ABGB): duration + intensity / impact on health – light ability of abstraction but not without pain app. € 100/day – medium ability of abstraction is limited to some activities app. € /day – strong no ability of abstraction, only the pain remains... app. € /day S: Tables by the Traffic Accident Compensation Board (Trafikskadenämnden) invalidity % + age England free discretion, but Kemp and Kemp: The Quantum of Damages + Judicial Studies Board’s Guideline for the Assessment of General Damages in Personal Injury Cases
II. Structural questions 5.3. Free discretion but binding thresholds (scaling down?... a like cases a like…) – the cap Canada: „the trilogy” 1978: Andrews v. Grand & Toy Alberta Ltd.; Thornton v. Prince George School Board; Arnold v. Teno rough upper limit, $ 100,000/1978 New South Wales: Civil Liability Act 2002, Personal Responsibility Act 2002 $ 350,000 cap in the most extreme cases – de minimis threshold New South Wales not under 15% of the most severe case
II. Structural questions 5.4. Binding amounts prescribed by law – The Danish Liability for Damages Act (cap, fixed amounts, de minimis threshold 5%) § 3 Pain and suffering DKK 130 (app. € 17) / day, max. DKK 50,000 (app. € 6,721) § 4 Permanent injury medical nature + scope of the injury + inconvenience caused 100% = DKK 573,500 ~ € 77,091 (special cases max DKK 687,500 ~ app. € 92,416) (1%/year reduction over 39 years of age, additional 1%/year reduction over 59 years of age)
III. Combinations Flexibility Individ.■ Infring. Persona- lity rights ■ Non- pecuniary loss ■ Also prevention deterrence ■R eparation Only ■Personal / Subjective ■ Functional ■ Conceptual / objective ■ Lump sum / overall evaluation ■ Categories ■ Free discretion ■ FD + orientating charts ■ FD + binding caps / thresholds ■ Amounts by law Predict. Standard.
IV. Secondary victims, relational losses 1. Accessory claims? / legal basis? Nervous shock? Cf. England: Alcock v Chief Constable of South Yorkshire Police  1 AC 310: – perceiving a shocking event with own senses – being present – sudden shock – close tie of love and affection – foreseeability Impacts on / injury to health? (Cf. PETL: it is a different base of claim!) Impact on the life of the relative (but not necessarily injury to his/her health, cf. Hungary, but see also „right to live in a complete and uninjured family“) The loss and the emptiness felt upon it itself? (grief and sorrow) / close relationship – formally in law? – de facto? (even de facto cohabitation, step parents, or as in France: parents-in- law, nephews, nieces, uncles, aunts f.e. if they brought up the child … but mere friendship?... ) – both? (DCFR) – rebuttably presumed in case of family relationship?
IV. Secondary victims, relational losses 2. Variations (prerequisites / limits / exclusions) No claim, unless nervous shock – medically ascertainable impairment of health, beyond mourning (Germany, Ireland) No claim, unless medically ascertainable impairment or: – Gross fault (intention, gross negligence), and – Close family relationship to the primary victim, and – Close personal relationship. (Presumed: parent, child, spouse.) Finland (similar, cf. Tort Liability Act, C. 5 S. 4a (1)) No fixed list of relatives + general prerequisites – certainty and directness of damages – emotional proximity France, Québec Fixed list of relatives + amounts set by law (supplemented by nervous shock cases) – „Loss of guidance, care and companionship” (Canada, common law provinces + Cf. Alberta, Manitoba, Saskatchewan: fixed amounts!)) – „Bereavement” (England, Fatal Accidents Act, 1976 c 30)
IV. Secondary victims, relational losses 3) Amounts Fixed by law (some fatal accidents acts) – England Bereavement (£ ) –Canada, common law provinces Loss of guidance, care and companionship Alberta spouse, parents: $ 82,000 / child $ 49,000 Manitoba spouse: $ 30,000 / others: $ 10,000 Saskatch. spouse: $ 60,000 / child, parent: $ 30,000 Free discretion – Québec Augustus v. Gosset: circumstances of the death, age, nature and quality of the relationship, the personality of the victim and his/her ability to manage the emotional consequences, impact on his life, etc. – Hungary …