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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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Serious accidents are exactly that. They’re SERIOUS.

They require a skilled, experienced, knowledgable and understanding lawyer to handle your claim.

But it’s not just the legal ups and downs that your personal injury lawyer will handle. A good lawyer, and one who knows what they’re doing, will help you get the rehabiliation and a team of professionals in place so that your treatment never skips a beat once you’re discharged from hospital. There is nothing WORSE seeing than a catastrophically injured accident vicitm who is not getting the rehabiliation or treatment which they need to help them get better. That irritates all of the lawyer and staff at Goldfinger Personal Injury Law. Arghhhhh…..

After a serious accident, it’s likely that you will be kept over at a hospital or a long term care facilty for an extended period of time. Chances are you might be transfered from one bed to another, or from one facility to another.

How long you stay at the hospital or the long term care facility is anyone’s guess. Ultimately, it’s up to the doctor to determine when it’s best for you to be discharged.

It’s important for the injured party and their family to understand that it’s the hospital’s goal to get you out of there, as safely and as efficiently as possible, so that they can free up another bed for another person. Much like a carousel, hospitals and rehab facilities are in a constant state of turnover. Patients come, and patients go. The longer a patient has to stay at the hospital, the fewer people that hospital has the capacity to treat and take on. Ultimately, the hospital or rehab facility wants to get you out of there ONLY when it’s safe to do so. Sorry to burst your bubble that they wanted to keep you there forever…
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If you keep up with the news, you will know there’s a shortage of family doctors. This shortage is more pronounced in rural or remote communities. Perhaps the notion of a shortage of family doctors isn’t accurate, but I’ll let the people at the Ministry of Health and the OMA debate that.

I’m sure we can all agree that people are having a tough time finding family doctors as many people in Ontario are WITHOUT family doctors. Many doctors aren’t accepting new patients.

Family doctors are very important. They represent the front line with respect to medical care and attention when you’re sick, injured or hurt.

In my travels across Ontario, I’m never shocked when people tell me that they don’t have a family doctor or that they haven’t seen a doctor in many years.

Lots of people don’t like going to see the doctor. The doctor’s office may conjure up bad memories, feelings of worry, or helplessness; so going to the doctor’s office isn’t a priority. Or, they can’t find the time in their busy work schedule to see a doctor. Or, perhaps they’ve had no reason for a very long time to get a family doctor when they have no pressing health problems. Or, their community just doesn’t have a family doctor nearby who’s taking on new patients. The closest family doctor might be a few hours drive away and making that drive just isn’t practical.

Our lawyers understand this. But, when an accident happens, the family doctor may be the most important medical professional for your case. Particularly in a chronic pain case.
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Readers of the Toronto Injury Lawyer Blog have asked for quick, easy to understand answers to their legal, personal injury related questions. We try to do this every week, but this week, we’re going to do something a bit different. Instead of focusing on one or two topics, or recent developments in the law; we’re going to give you a rapid fire Q & A with our directing lawyer, Brian Goldfinger (BG). We hope you get something out of this rapid fire question and answer series. If it’s a success, we’ll try to do it more often.

Q: What sort of cases does your law firm handle?

BG: We handle a wide variety of personal injury claims and insurance disputes. From catastrophic car accidents, brain injuries, motorcycle accidents, long term disability claims to dog bite claims; we handle them. Basically, if you’ve hurt or injured, our law firm can find a way to help you out if you have a cause of action and a valid claim.

Q: Does your law firm practice in any other areas of law aside from personal injury claims?

BG: No. We specialize in injury claims, and that’s pretty much all we do. Any legal matters for wills, estates, business law, criminal law, family law etc. all gets referred to my colleagues who specialize on those areas of the law.

Q: It all comes down to money, and our readers want to know how much it costs to meet with you.

BG: Meeting with me is FREE!

Q: But how much does it cost after the free meeting? There’s gotta be a catch.

BG: There’s NO COST after our free consultation. If we like you, and we like your case, then we will take your case on what’s called a “contingency fee basis”. This is a fancy legal term for you don’t have to pay any legal fees until your case settles. That means you pay legal fees at the end of the case, and the legal fees are contingent upon our recovery for you in your case.
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