Archive for February, 2011

Personal Injury Lawyers in Toronto

Tuesday, February 15th, 2011

If you have been injured due to the negligence of someone else, you should consult with a personal injury lawyer.

The most common kind of personal injury is caused by a motor vehicle accident. Whether it is a car, motorcycle, bus or bicycle accident, there may be significant compensation available to you. New motor vehicle insurance regulations came into effect in Ontario on September 1, 2010. Our lawyers will be happy to discuss what this could mean to you.

There are time limits that one should be aware of if you have been involved in a motor vehicle accident. Under the Insurance Act, an action for loss or damage from bodily injury or death arising from the use or operation of an automobile shall not be commenced unless the Plaintiff has served written notice of the intention to commence the action on the Defendant within 120 days after the incident. Under the Limitation Act, a proceeding or law suit shall not be commenced in respect of a claim after the second anniversary of the day on which the claim was discovered (usually the day of the accident).

Many people are concerned about the costs of a lawyer. Affordability should not be a concern for people that seek our help. Subject to certain exceptions, we will take on your case and agree to be paid only if we are successful in achieving a settlement or Judgment at trial. That means you would only be required to pay the lawyers fees if a settlement is achieved or Judgment is obtained at trial. If the case is not successful then you would not be charged any fees.

Looking for a Personal Injury Lawyer in Toronto

Monday, February 14th, 2011

If you have been injured due to the negligence of someone else, you should consult with a personal injury lawyer.

The most common kind of personal injury is caused by a motor vehicle accident. Whether it is a car, motorcycle, bus or bicycle accident, there may be significant compensation available to you. New motor vehicle insurance regulations came into effect in Ontario on September 1, 2010. Our lawyers will be happy to discuss what this could mean to you.

There are time limits that one should be aware of if you have been involved in a motor vehicle accident. Under the Insurance Act, an action for loss or damage from bodily injury or death arising from the use or operation of an automobile shall not be commenced unless the Plaintiff has served written notice of the intention to commence the action on the Defendant within 120 days after the incident. Under the Limitation Act, a proceeding or law suit shall not be commenced in respect of a claim after the second anniversary of the day on which the claim was discovered (usually the day of the accident).

Many people are concerned about the costs of a lawyer. Affordability should not be a concern for people that seek our help. Subject to certain exceptions, we will take on your case and agree to be paid only if we are successful in achieving a settlement or Judgment at trial. That means you would only be required to pay the lawyers fees if a settlement is achieved or Judgment is obtained at trial. If the case is not successful then you would not be charged any fees.

Personal Injury Lawyer in Toronto discusses Long and Short Term Disability Insurance Claims

Monday, February 14th, 2011

If you have purchased a disability plan or work for a company that includes a disability plan in their benefits package then you have made a responsible and intelligent decision. These plans are your protection against unforeseen injury, accident and illness. However, many insured individuals are surprised by how difficult it can be to apply and collect benefits. Insurance companies are in business to make a profit. It can make business sense for them to delay or deny claims.

How long should I be waiting to receive my benefits? Usually, if you have a short term disability plan often you would be able to access benefits right away or after a short waiting period. If you only have long term disability benefits often there will be a “qualifying or elimination” period of several months. The specifics of the waiting period should be set out in the policy of insurance. During that time, consideration should be given to apply for sickness benefits from the government.

How much should I be getting? This varies from policy to policy. Many policies range from 50-85% of net or gross salary and some have a capped maximum depending on your income.

Do I have to apply for Canada Pension Plan CPP disability benefits too? Many policies require an insured to apply for CPP benefits and they often will get credit for amounts received from CPP. This provision should be set out in the policy.

Aaron Waxman and Associates have handled hundreds of long and short term disability claims successfully. We can assist you with the application or appeal process. If the insurer has treated you poorly or in bad faith, you may be entitled to punitive or aggravated damages.

What Are Your Rights if You Have Been Injured in a Car Accident?

Monday, February 14th, 2011

There are generally two ways to seek compensation. First, you may be eligible to claim certain benefits from an insurance company or the Motor Vehicle Accident Claims Fund. These are sometimes called “no-fault accident benefits” and they are usually available no matter who is at fault for the accident. Secondly, if another person is at fault for the accident, you may be entitled to claim an award of damages.

The Following is an Overview of Damages Available
(a) Non-Pecuniary General Damages (damages for “pain and suffering”):
You should be aware that if your claim arises out of a car accident occurring after October 31, 1996, to succeed with your claim for pain and suffering your injuries must meet the requirements of the “threshold”, and if during your lawsuit or at trial a court finds your injuries do not meet this threshold, you will not be entitled to damages for pain and suffering. In order for your claim to pass the “threshold”, the injuries sustained in the motor vehicle accident must have resulted in:

(1) death;
(2) permanent serious disfigurement (for example, scars); or
(3) permanent serious impairment of an important physical, mental or psychological function.
Claims for pain and suffering are prevented unless you meet this threshold, however claims for loss of income and loss of earning capacity are not affected by the “threshold”. If your claim meets the threshold, there is a $30,000.00 deductible from the amount of damages you, the injured party would otherwise receive. There is a $15,000.00 deductible for Family Law Act claims. The deductible will not be applied where claims for the injured party exceed $100,000.00 or claims under the Family Law Act exceed $50,000.00 or claims for the death of a family member
(b) Loss of Income:
The principles of “meeting the threshold” do not apply when you are suing for loss of income. Income losses can be claimed however, you can not claim a loss of income for the first 7 days after an accident. You can receive only 70% of your gross income (less any accident benefits which are received). After trial, you can receive 100% of your gross loss of income, less any accident benefits paid.
(c) Heath Care Expenses:
If your injuries meet the threshold, you can claim the costs of health care expenses incurred as a result of your accident, over and above amounts paid or available through accident benefits.
(d) Other Out of Pocket Expenses:
Other expenses reasonably incurred as a result of the motor vehicle accident not covered by accident benefits (i.e. housekeeping and home maintenance assistance).
Does the “Threshold” apply to non-automobile defendants?
No. The Threshold only applies to the extent that the injuries were caused by the negligence of other drivers or owners of motor vehicles. Claims against municipalities, taverns, mechanics, etc. will not normally be subject to a threshold.
What if the accident was my partially my fault?
If your actions have contributed to the accident, then you can still pursue a claim against other parties for the percentage that they are to blame for the accident.
What if I can’t afford a personal injury lawyer?
The Ontario Court of Appeal has ruled that contingency fee agreements are valid. The Law Society of Upper Canada has amended its rules to allow for contingency fees. A lawyer can agree to take on your case, subject to certain exceptions, and agree to be paid only if they are successful in achieving a settlement or Judgment at trial. That means you would only be required to pay the lawyers fees if a settlement is achieved or Judgment is obtained at trial. If the case is not successful then you would not be charged any fees.
Are there time limits I should be aware of?
A person who wants to apply for benefits must notify the insurer within 7 days from the date of the accident. For those people who are unable to apply for benefits within 7 days due to the severity of their injuries, the application must be made as soon thereafter as it can reasonably be done. The insurer will then send to the insured the appropriate application forms. Within 30 days of receipt of the forms, a completed application for benefits should be submitted by the injured person to the insurer. Failure to comply with these time limits may not disentitle a person to benefits if there is a reasonable excuse.
Under the Insurance Act, an action for loss or damage from bodily injury or death arising from the use or operation of an automobile shall not be commenced unless the Plaintiff has served written notice of the intention to commence the action on the Defendant within 120 days after the incident.
Under the Limitation Act, a proceeding or law suit shall not be commenced in respect of a claim after the second anniversary of the day on which the claim was discovered (usually the day of the accident).