SAAQ: assess after-effects very precisely in order to issue the right compensation | Protecteur du Citoyen
August 19, 2019

SAAQ: assess after-effects very precisely in order to issue the right compensation


Doctor looking at a patient's knee

The complaint

A citizen received compensation from the Société de l’assurance automobile du Québec (the SAAQ) following an accident. Feeling that she qualified for a bigger amount, she complained to the Québec Ombudsman.

The investigation

  • A citizen was in a traffic accident and was living with its after-effects. She notified the SAAQ of her situation.
  • The SAAQ assessed her physical limitations and assigned her a severity level of 2 (the severity level determines the compensation amount). 
  • The citizen considered that the SAAQ had not assessed her condition properly. She felt that it was much more serious and that the amount granted should be higher.
  • The Québec Ombudsman’s investigation showed that a physician had assessed the citizen’s after-effects. The report indicated that she could manage to squat (bend her knees and put all her weight on her heels). However, she was completely unable to remain in that position.
  • The Québec Ombudsman felt that the SAAQ should have considered this last piece of information. If the citizen had managed to remain squatting, level 2 would have been appropriate. However, according to the law, if the person cannot do this, a level 3 must be assigned instead.
  • The level 3 indemnity is higher than the level 2 indemnity.

The result

The Québec Ombudsman recommended that the SAAQ change the severity level of the citizen’s after-effects. In the end, she was assigned level 3. As a result, the amount of her indemnity increased by several thousand dollars.

The Québec Ombudsman ensures that your rights are upheld in your dealings with Québec public services. Are you dissatisfied with the services of a Government of Québec department or agency? Or with those of a health and social services network institution (2nd level of recourse)? File a complaint with the Québec Ombudsman by calling 1-800-463-5070 or use our online complaint form.