Search Results | Clear Search | Previous (in doc) | Next (in doc) | Prev Doc | Next Doc
Qp Date

Negligence Act

[RSBC 1996] CHAPTER 333

Contents
1Apportionment of liability for damages
2Awarding of damages
3Apportionment of liability for costs
4Liability and right of contribution
5Negligence of spouse in cause of action that arose before April 17, 1985
6Questions of fact
7Actions against personal representatives
8Further application

Apportionment of liability for damages

1  (1) If by the fault of 2 or more persons damage or loss is caused to one or more of them, the liability to make good the damage or loss is in proportion to the degree to which each person was at fault.

(2) Despite subsection (1), if, having regard to all the circumstances of the case, it is not possible to establish different degrees of fault, the liability must be apportioned equally.

(3) Nothing in this section operates to make a person liable for damage or loss to which the person's fault has not contributed.

Awarding of damages

2  The awarding of damage or loss in every action to which section 1 applies is governed by the following rules:

(a) the damage or loss, if any, sustained by each person must be ascertained and expressed in dollars;

(b) the degree to which each person was at fault must be ascertained and expressed as a percentage of the total fault;

(c) as between each person who has sustained damage or loss and each other person who is liable to make good the damage or loss, the person sustaining the damage or loss is entitled to recover from that other person the percentage of the damage or loss sustained that corresponds to the degree of fault of that other person;

(d) as between 2 persons each of whom has sustained damage or loss and is entitled to recover a percentage of it from the other, the amounts to which they are respectively entitled must be set off one against the other, and if either person is entitled to a greater amount than the other, the person is entitled to judgment against that other for the excess.

Apportionment of liability for costs

3  (1) Unless the court otherwise directs, the liability for costs of the parties to every action is in the same proportion as their respective liability to make good the damage or loss.

(2) Section 2 applies to the awarding of costs under this section.

(3) If, as between 2 persons, one is entitled to a judgment for an excess of damage or loss and the other to a judgment for an excess of costs there is a further set off of the respective amounts and judgment must be given accordingly.

Liability and right of contribution

4  (1) If damage or loss has been caused by the fault of 2 or more persons, the court must determine the degree to which each person was at fault.

(2) Except as provided in section 5 if 2 or more persons are found at fault

(a) they are jointly and severally liable to the person suffering the damage or loss, and

(b) as between themselves, in the absence of a contract express or implied, they are liable to contribute to and indemnify each other in the degree to which they are respectively found to have been at fault.

Negligence of spouse in cause of action that arose before April 17, 1985

5  (1) In an action founded on fault or negligence and brought for loss or damage resulting from bodily injury to or the death of a married person, if one of the persons found to be at fault or negligent is the spouse of the married person, no damages, contribution or indemnity are recoverable for the portion of loss or damage caused by the fault or negligence of that spouse.

(2) The portion of the loss or damage caused by the fault or negligence of the spouse referred to in subsection (1) must be determined although that spouse is not a party to the action.

(3) This section applies only if the cause of action arose before April 17, 1985.

Questions of fact

6  In every action the amount of damage or loss, the fault, if any, and the degrees of fault are questions of fact.

Actions against personal representatives

7  (1) If a person dies who, because of this Act, would have been liable for damages or costs had the person continued to live, an action or third party proceedings that, because of this Act, could have been brought or maintained against the person who has died may be brought and maintained or, if pending, may be continued against the personal representative of the deceased person.

(2) The damages and costs recovered under subsection (1) are payable out of the estate of the deceased person in similar order of administration as the simple contract debts of the deceased person.

(3) If there is no personal representative of the deceased person appointed in British Columbia within 3 months after the person's death, the court, on the application of a party intending to bring or continue an action or third party proceedings under this section, and on the notice to other parties, either specially or generally by public advertisement, as the court may direct, may appoint a representative of the estate of the deceased person for all purposes of the intended or pending action or proceedings and to act as defendant in them.

(4) The action or proceedings brought or continued against the representative appointed under subsection (3) and all proceedings in them bind the estate of the deceased person in all respects as if a duly constituted personal representative of the deceased person were a party to the action.

(5) An action or third party proceeding must not be brought against a personal representative under subsection (1), or against a representative of the estate appointed under subsection (3), after the time otherwise limited for bringing the action.

Further application

8  This Act applies to all cases where damage is caused or contributed to by the act of a person even if another person had the opportunity of avoiding the consequences of that act and negligently or carelessly failed to do so.