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Last year around this time, our law firm published our top winter safety tips in the ever popular Toronto Injury Lawyer Blog. If you didn’t catch those tips, you can read about them here.

Environment Canada is predicting a milder winter, compared to las year.The’re predicting less snow, less ice, and much warmer temperatures vs. last year’s harsh winter.

But ask yourself. Do you really believe Environment Canada!?!?! I swear, when they predict sun, it rains. When they predict sunshine, it rains. You get the picture.

In any event, would such a prediction from Environment Canada stop you from getting you ready for another Ontario Winter?

So, without further a due, here are Goldfinger Personal Injury Law’s revised winter safety tips for the 2014/2015 winter season. The old tips we previously published are still good,but these tips add to the old.
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One of the most interesting cases our law firm has ever handled, was a jail house assault matter in Sarnia Ontario.

The Sarnia Jail has been know for its overcrowding issues and violence. When you have too many people under one roof, things are going to get rowdy. When you have too many people under the same roof with poor supervision and deteriorating conditions, things are going to get bad QUICKLY. Nevermind the fact that none of those people in the jail want to be there in the first place.

And things sure did get bad for a client of ours. He was beaten repeatedly with a hunk of cement from a deteriorating jail house wall which was stuffed in to a pillow case to create a sling like weapon. The result was a traumatic brain injury, multiple orthopaedic injuries, along with permanent disfigurement to his fingers and ears. It wasn’t a pretty site.

Where were the guards in all of the commotion? How diid the guards not stop the beating, or prevent it from happening in the first place? Why didn’t the guards see an inmate with a hunk of cement wrapped in to a pillow case to begin with? How on earth does such a violent assaut take place on government premises?

All of these questions and more were asked by the lawyers trying this case.
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I was recently mediating a Long Term Disability Claim on behalf of a disabled client who worked for Canada Post.

She was diagnosed with a wide variety of ailments, including but not limited to:

– Disc Bulges at various levels requiring surgery – Chronic Pain stemming from her back radiating down her legs requiring her to use a can to walk – A Major Depressive Disorder – An Anxeity Disorder – Sleeplessness – Fatigue – Constant Headaches
It was clear to all of the lawyers and staff at our office, that she was completely disabled; not just from her own occupation, but from ANY occupation for which she qualified by reason of education, training and experience. It was clear to her treating doctors and medico-legal experts that she was not a candidate to return to her old job at Canada Post, or work at ANY occupation whatsoever. Nor, was she a candidate for retraining given her age and the nature of her disability which effected her stamina, concentration, memory and abilty to work and interact with others.
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It’s starting to get a bit chilly outside and snow is on the horizon.

Many snowmobile enthusiasts are gearing up for another great winter on the trails. Before you head out this season, the Court of Appeal just released an important ruling dealing with the importance of insuring your ATVs, snowmobiles and other recreational vehicles.

So, before you hit the trails this winter, take a quick read at this Toronto Injury Lawyer Blog Post so that you have all of your bases covered.

For starters, when you sign up for car insurance OR homeowners insurance, the broker (in person or over the phone) may ask you if you own any other vehicles aside from the car(s) which you are seeking to insure. These other vehicles can include ANYTHING with an engine. A scooter, a seado, a skido, a quad, a dirtbike etc.

Knowing how many motorized vehicles is important to the insurer so they can provide you as accurate a quote for coverage as possible. This is getting increasingly important with all of the E-Bikes we are seeing on the road.

It’s also important for you, the consumer to disclose this information because you don’t want to be riding on an uninsured motor vehicle; when that vehicle should have been insured. This is exactly what happened to Arthur Matheson on October 11, 2008. What exactly happened to Mr. Matheson? Read on to find out!
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If it sounds too good to be true; then beware! (free legal advice)

This saying applies to sales, services and deals we see in our every day lives. It even applies to legal fees in personal injury cases.

How so? Good question.

I’ve heard of injury lawyers quoting prospective clients that their “fees” will not be greater than 10% or 15% of the total value of the sum recovered.

This sound like an amazing deal, considering that nearly every accident lawyer who works on a contingency fee, or modified contingency fee basis charges in the range of 20%-30%, depending on the case.

So what would drive a lawyer to charge 10%-15%? Are they planning on working 10%-15% less than another lawyer who charges 20%-30%? Is the case so AMAZING that it warrants such a discount? Does the lawyer the client so much that s/he is willing to reduce their fees that much?

There’s gotta be a catch…..

There is! And I will tell you exactly what that catch is, and how these sort of lawyers hand it to you in a round about way.
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Halloween is fast approaching and everyone is getting in to the spirit. Household decorations are popping up. People are crunching trying to find that perfect holiday costume. And what about the mounds of candies and treats that are yet to come. It’s a fun time which shouldn’t be tainted by accident or injury.

You would be AMAZED at the volume of post Halloween personal injury calls that our law firm receives. When things go wrong, we hear about it and we hear about it fast.

With that being said, the following Toronto Injury Lawyer Blog Post is our best attempt to warn you about some of the top accident/injury calls we get around this time of year to prevent them from happening to you or your loved ones.

1) Injuries caused on account of darkness Trick or treating happens in the dark. Because it’s dark, pedestrians often can’t see where they’re walking. This might cause them to trip and fall on a hazard which they might otherwise see in the daylight. How can you solve this problem? Try starting your trick or treating a bit earlier when there’s more daylight. Carry a flashlight to guide your way. Walk in areas which you’re familiar with. Walk on well lit streets or well lit paths. Visibility is important.

Other injuries we see on account of poor visibility involve pedestrian/car accidents. Cases where cars fail to see trick or treaters, and knock them over causing serious injury. Motorists need to be especially cautious while driving on Halloween to avoid energized youngsters on their quest to candy. Drive slow. Put on your head lights. When in doubt, slow down. The same what that motorists need to be careful of pedestrians; pedestrians also need to be careful of negligent motorists. Walk on the sidewalk. Carry a flashlight. Get some reflective tape for your costume or on your candy collecting pail. Don’t dress in all black because motorists won’t be able to see you well.
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The first thing which comes to mind when thinking about compensation for personal injury law cases is that they’re all about pain and suffering, or general damages as they’re known.

People who specialize in this area know that damages for pain and suffering are significant, but they aren’t the be all and end all of compensation for an injury case. There are MANY more headings and heads of damages for an injury case which can be much more lucrative than general damages.

The purpose of this Toronto Injury Lawyer Blog Post is to examine damages for pain and suffering and how they work.

One of the most commonly asked questions for our lawyers is HOW MUCH IS MY CASE WORTH? MY PAIN AND SUFFERING IS IMMEASURABLE.

As always, these questions are hard to answer in a quick 140 character Tweet. It all depends on the facts of your case, the nature of the injuries sustained, your pre-accident health, pre-accident life style, and how your recover (or don’t). Every case is different, and every award for damages is also different.

A very long time ago, when dirt was young and when there was little to no traffic on the 401 or in the City of Toronto, the Supreme Court of Canada ruled on 3 distinct cases that are commonly known as the “trilogy”, In these case, the Supreme Court essentially ruled that damages for pain and suffering (general damages) were capped.

Unlike the United States, where we see massive awards for general damages in the millions and millions of dollars; damages for pain and suffering in Canada will not exceed around $356,000 or so in 2014. Sounds crazy right? Just $356,000 to measure pain and suffering!?!?! I agree. But the Supreme Court did this for good reason.
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Our lawyers represent clients from all across Ontario.

From Southwest Ontario, Toronto, all the way to the Northern most part of this great province.

I will be in Thunder Bay this month, and next month helping out innocent accident victims. People want to know what sort of differences we see in our cases from more urban settings such as London, Hamilton or Toronto, compared to more remote settings in the Northern Parts of Ontario.

I can tell you that it doesn’t matter where you are; we see plenty of odd and strange stuff. Having said that, the odd and strange things we see in Northern Ontario are unique to Northern Ontario. Don’t believe me? Try these cases out for size!
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When innocent parties get run over by a car, or hit while they’re riding a bike, they automatically think that some for of insurance company will respond to their claim.

On one hand, they’re right: some FORM of insurance should respond. But what form that insurance comes in (private/public/fast/slow) is a different story.

The insurer of LAST resort is the Ontario Motor Vehicle Accident Claims Fund or “The Fund” as it’s known to many lawyers across Ontario.

But, getting the Fund to respond to your claim is not as easy as it sounds, nor are they quick to act in any way, shape or form. After all, we’re dealing with a government entity.

In Ontario, we have a system of no fault accident benefits. That system, is supposed to provide all injured accident victims with support for their rehabilitation costs which are not covered by OHIP after an accident. Physiotherapy, chiropractic care, occupational therapy is all NOT covered by OHIP, except in very limited circumstances, either through the hospital or through Community Care Access Centre (CCAC).
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Our team of lawyers and staff at our firm have seen some very odd stuff this week which we’d like to share with our Toronto Injury Lawyer Blog readership.

There’s no doubt in our minds that what our clients have gone through this week have posed barriers to not only compensation; but barriers to justice all on account of administrative error and incompetence by public/government agencies.

In order to truly appreciate and understand these errors, you really need to understand the car accident and insurance system, and the roles which different actors and government agencies play.

I will do my very best to keep the legal jargon to a minimum so that even people far removed from car accident litigation can understand how these errors and incompetence have impacted persons lives.
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