Personal Injury Law FAQ
Confused and in Need of Clarification?
We would like to provide you with some immediate answers to relieve the initial stress that the mountain of questions your difficult situation has generated.
The personal injury team at Himelfarb Proszanski has successfully handled over 10,000 cases in a large spectrum of personal injury and disability claim matters. We are sharing here answers to some of the questions people approaching us are asking most frequently.
Please do not hesitate to get in touch (via phone, live chat support, or contact form) if you need any more precision, if anything is not clear enough, or if you feel you need any additional assistance or legal advice.
> Click on each question to read our detailed answer.
What steps should I take when injured?
- Contact the police and provide them with all of the information they need about the accident.
- Get the names and addresses of everyone involved in the accident, as well as witnesses to the accident.
- Record the insurance information.
- Inform your family doctor of your injury.
- Contact your insurance company as soon as you can to inform them about your accident.
- Notify your school or employer.
- Get the contact information of the health care professionals that are involved.
- Keep receipts for all related expenses.
- Ask family members to record dates and times spent caring for you.
- Check to see if you have other insurance coverage from work, school or private plans.
- Contact Himelfarb Proszanski to understand your rights.
Why do I need a specialist on personal injury law?
Hiring a personal injury lawyer ensures your case is taken seriously by insurance companies, while getting your case settled as fast as possible with the highest compensation that you are entitled to.
Your personal injury law specialist will deal with the insurance company and all of the documentation that is requested by them, reducing your anxiety and stress, while allowing you to focus on your recovery.
Your personal injury lawyer will make certain that the right experts are brought in to ensure that your rights are protected, and obtain vital documentation and reports. Evidence is gathered and presented to the insurance company and court to prove that you deserve the settlement and medical care that you should be entitled to.
When should I consider suing?
If you have been seriously injured by a third party, you can sue for compensation to pay medical bills, recover lost earnings, as well as the costs of getting trained in a new line of work. It’s important to speak to a lawyer as soon as possible after suffering a personal injury to understand your rights and if you have a case.
You will need to provide your lawyer with all available evidence and testify in court, if necessary. In many cases, both parties settle out of court, which means that a negotiation will take place regarding the settlement sum, terms and conditions.
What is my claim worth?
In many cases, you can get compensation for all injuries, losses and damages which you suffer as a result of an accident or injury. There are different types of damages that you can claim, including general damages, loss of income, other pecuniary losses, and Family Law Act claims.
General damages provide compensation for pain and suffering and loss of enjoyment of life. The limit imposed by the Supreme Court of Canada is approximately $400,000.00.
In car accident claims, there are no general damages unless the claim meets a “threshold,” which means that you have to experience a permanent, serious disfigurement or impairment of an important physical, mental or psychological function. In addition, an injured person’s general damages may be reduced by a deductible established by law under the Insurance Act. As of 2023, the deductible is $44,367.24. This deductible vanishes if your pain and suffering award or general damages are assessed at more than $147,889.59. We do not believe that it is fair to impose a deductible against someone who has serious injuries, but this is the law of Ontario.
In terms of loss of income, you are entitled to recover any income that you have lost as a result of your accident, income that may be lost in the future, as well as damages for any reduction in your income earning ability, or ability to compete for work in the future. In car accident claims, you are only entitled to receive 70% of your past income loss up to the trial. After that, you are entitled to assess your future income loss at 100%.
In terms of other pecuniary losses, you can get compensation for out of pocket expenses as a result of your injury, such as travel expenses, housekeeping, home maintenance, as well as past and future care costs. In some cases, medical expenses that are not covered by OHIP or an insurance policy can be recovered.
In many cases, family members of an injured person suffer from the accident indirectly and are entitled to claim compensation for the losses they have suffered. These losses include any expenses incurred on behalf of the injured person, and compensation for the loss of the care, guidance and companionship which would have been provided by the injured relative if the accident did not occur. For car accidents, there is a deductible of $22,183.63 as of 2023. This deductible vanishes if the family member’s claim is assessed over $73,944.18. Again, we do not believe that a deductible is fair, but it is the law of Ontario.
Make sure to use our personal injury calculator to estimate the value of your claim
What happens if your injury meets the “threshold”?
In auto accidents, to meet the “threshold,” you have to experience a permanent, serious disfigurement or impairment of an important physical, mental or psychological function. If you do meet the threshold, there is a $44,367,24 deductible from the amount of damages that you would otherwise receive unless damages awarded exceed $147,889.59. These figures are current as of 2023. In that case, there is no deductible. You do not have to meet the threshold to claim for loss of income. The threshold only applies when the injured person is suing for general damages and medical and rehabilitation expenses .
Is the first consultation really free?
Yes. The initial consultation will not cost you anything. During this consultation, you will get a better understanding of what you are entitled to in terms of both compensation and medical care, while getting a clear perspective on whether you have a case. You can easily book this free consultation here.
What do we discuss during our first consultation?
We discuss how your personal injury occurred, what injuries you suffered, your impairments and limitations, as well as how they affect your life and your ability to function. We let you know if you have a case. We then discuss your rights, outline the legal process and the role your lawyer plays in getting you the settlement and medical attention you are entitled to.
What is the cost of a lawsuit?
Your consultation is free and when your case is settled, legal fees are paid from the settlement based on a percentage agreed to at the beginning of your lawsuit. We pay for all expenses, known as “disbursements”, such as medical, accounting and other experts. Then, we are reimbursed when your case is settled. If a lawsuit is not successful, you are not charged for legal fees or any expenses. It’s important to discuss legal fees with your lawyer. Most specialists who work on personal injury law work on a contingency fee retainer, which means that the lawyer gets paid a percentage of your recovery when the case is settled and you receive compensation. This means that if you do not receive money for your injuries, your lawyer does not get paid.
"The law isn't justice. It's a very imperfect mechanism. If you press exactly the right buttons and are also lucky, justice may show up in the answer. A mechanism is all the law was ever intended to be." ~Raymond Chandler
Why Choose HIMPRO?
Himelfarb Proszanski is a leading law firm with full service personal injury lawyers. We have been recognized by Best Lawyers and have the highest rating, AV Preeminent, from Martindale-Hubbell. We provide a combined century of trial experience which has led to the successful settlement of over 10,000 cases with combined settlement value in excess of 3/4 billion dollars. Our mission is to win your case. At Himelfarb Proszanski we build winning cases. That’s the HIMPRO Advantage™.
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- Your injury is assessed and your options are discussed
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