Published on:

Brian Goldfinger has been practising law long enough to have seen some very good practices from personal injury lawyers in Ontario; along with some very bad practices from personal injury lawyers in Ontario.

When bad things happen to people; they often turn to Brian Goldfinger to right the ship and turn things around.

In this instalment of the Toronto Injury Lawyer Blog, we pick Brian Goldfinger’s mind to find out some not so good stories from clients he has seen in the past in terms of what not to do when retaining a personal injury lawyer in Ontario.

  1. Meet with your personal injury lawyer: All too often, Brian Goldfinger has been approached by prospective clients with personal injury cases who are being handled by other personal injury lawyers or paralegals. When Brian asks them who their lawyer is; the client cannot say. When asked whether or not they have met with a personal injury lawyer, spoken to one, or corresponded with one in relation to their case, often the answer is a firm “no”. When pressed further, the truth comes out that they never met a personal injury lawyer before. Instead, they met with a non lawyer who called themselves a “consultant” or a “client care specialist”, or some other fancy non-legal title. These people are not personal injury lawyers. They are people who give themselves fancy titles. These people may act as agents or servants or employees for the law firm they work for or represent whose sole job is to run around the City or Province and get clients and sign up clients. Never meeting with or speaking with your personal injury lawyer from the start is recipe for disaster. When you hire a real estate agent, do you meet with that agent or do you meet with his/her agent or secretary? When you need to get surgery, do you meet with the surgeon ahead of time to discuss the procedure, or do you meet with the surgeon’s agent? The same applies when it comes to your personal injury lawyer. Know who you’re hiring.

Continue reading →

Published on:

My law firm handles a lot of long term disability claims.

These are cases whereby large insurance companies like Great West Life, Sun Life, Manulife, Canada Life, Industrial Alliance, Desjardins Insurance, La Capitale Insurance, RBC Insurance, Co-Operators Insurance etc. cut off, cease to pay or terminate one’s long term disability benefits.

We have represented people of all ages, from all different walks of life, with different occupations. People like doctors, lawyers, nurses, teachers, postal workers, university employees, municipal/government employees, civil servants, mechanics, general labourers, janitors, casino employees, factory workers, automotive sector employees, machinists, plumbers, tradesmen, bus drivers, truckers, brick layers, retail employees, clerical/secretarial staff, bankers, and even people with cushy desk jobs who work in giant towers in downtown Toronto. The list goes on.

Some people don’t lawyer up. They try to appeal these denials or terminations of benefits on their own. Our long term disability lawyers rarely see these appeals go anywhere. It’s like going to a gun fight with a rubber knife. All the appeal does is to serve the insurance company in establishing a patter of denials and kicking the can down the road for a few months in the hopes that a limitation period lapses to prevent a Plaintiff from bringing their claim in the requisite period of time. It’s an exercise by the insurance company to give the illusion that they are treating your claim with the upmost best intentions. But the reality is that your claim was doomed to succeed in the first place. Once the insurer looks at it in a negative light, it’s very difficult to sway the insurer in the other direction to have the claim approved without the assistance of a personal injury lawyer with experience handing long term disability claims.

Continue reading →

Published on:

In the final instalment of a four-part series on long-term disability insurance, Toronto personal injury lawyer Brian Goldfinger discusses some of the unique issues that surface in LTD claims filed by educators and postal workers.

Toronto personal injury lawyer Brian Goldfinger refutes any perception that teachers and postal workers have cushy jobs as they are among the top clients he helps fight for in long-term disability (LTD) claims.

“Both jobs have generous vacations, but that’s a trade-off,” says Goldfinger, founder of Goldfinger Injury Lawyers. “When you sign up for it, there are significant amounts of stress and pressure, and nobody gives these workers their due respect.”

Teachers and postal workers share a number of commonalities, he tells AdvocateDaily.com. “Both are unionized and have access to a variety of benefits, but they’re in very high-stress, difficult jobs and they don’t get proper credit.

“They take some time off for stress, but it gets extended because their doctors or therapists believe their work environment is unhealthy for them,” Goldfinger says.

“It sounds strange because people often assume teachers are in a class of smiling, happy children, or that a postal worker has a dream job,” he says.

Goldfinger says that while many of these cases involve stress leave, physical issues are also common.

He points to a 2017 survey that found almost nine in 10 teachers have experienced or witnessed violence or harassment in the workplace.

Continue reading →

Published on:

Recently the Ontario Government increased the cost of many Court filing fees. Notably, the cost of filing a Trial Record in the Ontario Superior Court doubled from $405 to $810. Like a cruel and ironic April Fool’s joke, the increased fee schedule will be implemented on April 1st,  2019. I cannot recall any form of debate or consultation that went in to increasing. If are seeking out the legislation with the increased court filing fees, you can find it by clicking the link here. 

Imagine that: $810 just to have your case placed on the trial list. This does not take in to consideration the cost of filing a statement of claim ($229), the cost of filing a motion record ($160) , the cost of a Jury Notice ($130), or the costs of any summonses to witness ($30 each).

So: If you want to have a civil jury trial in a personal injury case, whereby you bring 2 motions, the cost in court filing fees alone for a Plaintiff would be $1,359 plus the costs of summonses at $30 each. This does not take in to consideration the filing costs for a Defendant; nor does it take in to consideration the cost of legal fees, HST on legal fees, or disbursements (faxes, photocopies, medical records, police reports etc.)

Lesson: Litigation is expensive and access to the Courts is reserved for the wealthy.

Continue reading →

Published on:

Long Term Disability insurance isn’t easy to understand. It’s not a common tort or a common cause of action.

It’s not an intentional act which causes harm, or a negligent act by an individual defendant which causes harm. That means it’s not easy for many people to understand.

Here’s a concept that’s easy for people to understand:

A Red Honda Civic runs a red light and t-bones a Blue Cadillac. The driver of the Red Honda Civic which ran the red light is charged and convicted for his bad driving. The passengers in the Blue Cadillac are all seriously injured in the car accident. The innocent accident victims in the Blue Cadillac sue the at fault driver of the Red Honda Civic.

In this very brief fact pattern, we have liability (the driver of the Red Honda Civic is at fault), and we also have damages and causation (the passengers of the Blue Cadillac got injured; and those injuries were a direct result of the negligence of the Red Honda Civic driver). The personal injury case against the at fault driver of the Red Honda Civic is clear and easy to understand.  This case is built in tort and based on negligence.

These concepts are relatively easy (in comparison to other causes of action) to understand.

Continue reading →

Published on:

This deep freeze, thaw, cold, warm, snow, rain, back to snow, then to ice weather cycle we have seen across Ontario this winter hasn’t been good for anyone. We’re not sure if it’s snowing, raining, or ice is falling from the sky.

All of the fluctuations in temperature have lead to slippery walking conditions on sidewalks, parking lots, entrance ways, walk ways and other paths.

Over the past week,  personal injury lawyer Brian Goldfinger has been asked for comment by the CBC, CityTV and quoted by Canadian Underwrite Magazine for commentary from a knowledgable lawyer regarding slip and fall cases in Ontario. You can find links to these articles here:

Canadians nurse winter wounds as cities grapple with icy sidewalks

 Latest Canadian statistics on slips and falls on ice

https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/london/sidewalk-clearing-law-london-ontario-1.5046917

Over the months of February and well in to the beginning of March 2019, our law firm has seen a spike from the usual norm with respect to winter slip and fall cases resulting in serious injury. Injuries like broken ankles, broken wrists, broken arms, broken hips; even fractured skulls. We have been seeing some pretty significant injury cases of late.

Continue reading →

Published on:

Every car accident case in Ontario has three major components:

  1. Liability
  2. Causation
  3. Damages

Without a personal injury lawyer establishing all of these components, the personal injury case will fail. Meaning, that if  Defendant successfully refutes, or creates sufficient doubt to surpass a balance of probabilities, the Defendant will win the case. As a plaintiff personal injury lawyer, you don’t want to see that happen.

In addition to these three pillars of personal injury law, your Ontario personal injury lawyer also must overcome the following rules at trial which CANNOT be shared with the jury:

  1. The Threshold for General Damages (did the injured accident victim sustain a serious and permanent impairment of an important bodily function)
  2. The Deductible aka the secret credit. The current deductible stands at $38,818.97 for any award for general damages below $129,395.49. The effect of the secret credit is that the Defendant insurance company does NOT NEED TO PAY THE FIRST $38,818.97  of any award below $129,395.49. We here at Goldfinger Injury Lawyers refer to the deductible as the secret credit because plaintiff lawyers are NOT ALLOWED TO MENTION THE DEDUCTIBLE AT TRIAL. So if a Jury intends to award a Plaintiff $50,000 in general damages for pain and suffering, that award automatically gets reduced to just $11,181.38 which is a 76% reduction in value from what the jury originally intended to award! On what planet do we automatically strip the will of the jury by such a large proportion?!?!? One final note on the secret credit. How many jurors to you think earn $38,818.97/year after tax. The median individual income in Ontario sits just $27,600.

Continue reading →

Published on:

We would like to take the time to thank all of you who rocked the vote in support of Goldfinger Injury Lawyers and Brian Goldfinger’s nomination in Canadian Lawyers’ Magazine for Top Law Firms in Plaintiff Side Personal Injury Law. Your support and well wishes have been overwhelming. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

We would like to use this instalment of the Toronto Injury Lawyer Blog to talk about the concept of mediation in the context of a personal injury case.

Many people have heard of the word mediation, but have never participated in a mediation before. That’s perfectly normal; especially for injured accident victims who are new to civil litigation and to the complicated world of personal injury law.

When boiled down to its core, a mediation is a confidential, without prejudice, settlement meeting. The word without prejudice means that anything that’s said in mediation, along with any offers which are exchanged won’t be held against any of the parties.

Continue reading →

Published on:

Friendly reminder that Brian Goldfinger and Goldfinger Injury Lawyers have been nominated by Canadian Lawyers Magazine as a Top Boutique in Personal Injury Law for 2019. In their own words, Canadian Lawyers Magazine is “looking for your input on the best firms specializing in personal injury law as well as the best arbitration chambers. 

Please choose the top ten firms from the list provided. If you do not rank at least five firms, your votes will not be counted.

The results will appear in our May 2019 issue. The survey will close on February 25.”

The survey only takes a few minutes to complete and you need not be a personal injury lawyer to do so. Brian Goldfinger and the team at Goldfinger Injury Lawyers would really appreciate your support. Here is the link to vote.

Now that the public service announcement is out of the way, we can begin this week’s installment of the Toronto Injury Lawyer Blog. This week Brian Goldfinger would like to focus on privacy and personal injury law in Ontario. Believe it or not, these two areas of the law intersect more that you would think.

Continue reading →

Published on:

Goldfinger Injury Lawyers had the privilege of attending an advance sneak peak at the upcoming Canadian International Auto Show 2019 from the Metro Toronto Convention Centre. In case you’re interested in attending, the show is being held from February 15-24, 2019 and features some of the largest collections of production and concept vehicles under one roof in Canada.

One of the things we keep an eye on at each show are the auto manufacturer’s commitments to vehicle and pedestrian safety; along with any innovations which really jumped out at us.

Here are some of the highlights from our trip to the show:

Continue reading →

Contact Information