Accidents and Red Lights..Who is at Fault ? What is the percentage of liability?

Ottawa Personal Injury Lawyers David Hollingsworth and Associates..

You would think that if you have a green light and the other driver has a red light and they hit you, you wouldn’t be at fault…well, you could be… A recent decision came from the Ontario Court of Appeal sheds some light on liability and how a driver who has a green light can still be partially liable. 
Accident at red light

Accident at red light

Accidents and Red Lights

By: Brent Meadows

Evan Sant was a passenger in Joel Sant’s pickup truck that entered an intersection on a red light and was hit by Mr. Sekhon. The jury found that Joel Sant was 95% liable and Mr. Sekhon was 5% liable. The jury’s finding that Mr. Sekhon was 5% liable was the main issue under appeal.
 
Ordinarily, a driver with a green light is free to proceed through an intersection and may assume that driver’s approaching the intersection from other directions will stop at a red light. This statutory right of way is, however, not absolute as the driver must still exercise proper care. For example, if it is clear that a vehicle is in or about to proceed into the driver’s right of way that driver must avoid the collision if the circumstances permit.
 
The jury found that the reasonably prudent driver should have been aware that Joel Sant’s vehicle posed a hazard, and ultimately found that Mr. Sekhon was 5% liable for the motor vehicle collision.
 
The Ontario Court of Appeal held that the trial judge did not misdirect the jury,  the jury’s finding was not plainly unreasonable, and that certain cross-examination questions were not improper or inflammatory. Mr. Sekhon’s appeal was dismissed and the finding that Mr. Sekhon was 5% liable was upheld.
 
Obviously it goes without saying that drivers need to exercise caution regardless of whether the light is red, green or yellow.   In this accident case, not one person was help 100 % responsible.  Drivers cannot predict what other drivers are thinking and will do, regardless of lights, stop signs etc… the moral of the story here is that we can’t  jump to the conclusion that if a driver is at fault, that they are entirely at fault and  the percentage of liability remains a question.  A driver who has the right-of-way has the obligation to exercise reasonable care in the operation of a motor vehicle.
 
For more information that relates to accidents and insurance claims, explore our website.  If you have a question, our Ottawa personal injury lawyers would be happy to offer you a free consultation to discuss any questions you may have.

Should you negotiate with your insurance adjuster ?

As an Ottawa personal injury lawyer, I meet daily with people and give them advice on how best to proceed with their personal injury lawsuit and accident benefits insurance claim.  Sometimes, I meet with people who have been working with their insurance company and are suddenly offered a settlement amount and don’t know what to do.  Typically people wonder if the settlement amount is fair?  If it’s enough to take of their injuries long-term ?, What a typical similar injury case typically yields in settlement funds ? Do they need a personal injury lawyer ?   How they should negotiate with the insurance company ?

There are some personal injury cases that are basic and straight forward enough that representing yourself may be sufficient.  If this is indeed the situation you find yourself in, then I still strongly advise you contact a personal injury lawyer for some free legal advice just to make sure you are on the right track and not selling yourself short.  Most experienced personal injury lawyers in Ottawa will do this for free for you and have all the information you need.  It will likely be a meeting or phone call that takes less than 30 minutes but a meeting that could typically help you receive thousands more in compensation.

Most personal injury cases are that straightforward and that’s where experienced personal injury lawyers can make all the difference.  In these cases, it’s always best to let a skilled personal injury lawyer negotiate for you.  Our Ottawa injury lawyers negotiate cases and settlement amounts daily.  We understand the complexity of the law and what needs to be asked for when it comes to compensation. We are very thorough and prepare diligently by ensuring all medical files are in order and a thorough medical diagnosis has been made by experts in that particular field.  We also gather all motor vehicle accident reports . we gather all witness statements, photos and help our clients document their losses.  There is a lot of preparation work involved but in the end it pays off.  It’s important to us that we make sure we have explored every aspect of your case so that when it comes time to negotiating on your behalf, we are overly prepared.

We have many systems in place to help make this process easier on you.  the last thing we want to do is add stress on you at an already stressful time. Once our lawyers have fully prepared your case, we then meet with you and discuss how best to move forward.  Once you are ready, we then approach the insurance company and begin the negotiation process.  This stage of negotiations can sometimes resolve quickly but often insurance companies often want to try to poke holes in any weaknesses that may exist in your case.

It’s important for you to understand that your insurance adjuster is likely a very nice person; however it is their job to try to settle your case for the least amount of money possible. They work for your insurance company.  This puts them in a difficult position as they are not neutral and don’t necessarily have your best interest at heart. It’s important that you are properly prepared , as once you settle a case you cannot change your mind and revisit it later on.  Our Ottawa injury lawyers work closely with you to make sure you not only receive maximum compensation for your injuries but that you are happy and feel good about settling your case.  We will never settle a case on your behalf without your approval.

It’s not easy proving your damages and losses.  We know how to do it and we do it very well. Even if you have been working with your insurance company, it’s not too late to get advice from an experienced Ottawa personal injury lawyer.  Let us help you.  You have been through enough.

 


How you can receive housekeeping and home maintenance expenses after an Ontario accident.

What are housekeeping benefits ?

Taking care of your home seems like the last thing you need to think about after an accident but unfortunately, you need to or you need someone helping  you. If your accident was in Ontario, you may be eligible for Ontario accident benefits from your insurance company or the insurance company of the driver who was at fault. There are several different accident benefits available to you. One involves housekeeping and home maintenance expenses. Basically, if you are unable to perform your usual housekeeping duties or home maintenance duties, your accident benefits can cover someone performing these duties for you.

How much are housekeeping benefits in Ontario ?

The maximum housekeeping and home maintenance benefit payment is $100 each week.

Does everyone qualify for housekeeping benefits?

This home maintenance and housekeeping benefit  is available only to Ontario accident victims who are deemed  “catastrophically injured” in an Ontario accident. However, the FSCO -Financial Services Committee of Ontario has made housekeeping and home maintenance benefits available to non-catastrophically injured accident victims as well by purchasing additional accident benefits. Yes, this means an additional cost each month to an already expensive insurance payment.

Should you purchase additional accident benefits?

We understand that purchasing these additional accident benefits may not seem to make sense; however,in the event of an accident , you may rely heavily on your insurance benefits.  If you are unsure of whether or not you have access to these Ontario accident benefits, let us know and we can help steer you in the right direction.  We can give you advice and let you decide how you want to approach your insurance company. We are here to help. All advice is free.

If you feel like your insurance company isn’t being fair, that’s where our personal injury lawyers in Ottawa can help. Let us help.

 


Ottawa lawyer David Hollingsworth explains maximum award for pain and suffering compensation in Ontario.

Ottawa Personal Injury Lawyer David Hollingsworth and Associates: lawyers for Ontario accident victims.

Compensation for Pain and Suffering in Ontario

Ontario Insurance. There are  two types of damage compensation in Ontario: pecuniary damages and non-pecuniary. Pecuniary damages can be calculated and non-pecuniary damages cannot be calculated.

Damages for Pain and Suffering in Ontario (Non-Pecuniary Damages)

Most serious accidents in Ontario result in personal injury and pain. There is the obvious pain suffered immediately following the accident, the pain following the treatment of the injury (ie surgery, physio etc..) and then there is the ongoing pain that can last for weeks, months, years or throughout one’s life following an accident.  In many cases, a serious injury may never fully heal, leaving accident victims with a life long pain problem. Thankfully the Ontario insurance regime  compensates accident victims for  pain and suffering.

In Ontario, the amount awarded for  pain and suffering varies depending on the situation. Some factors that help determine the maximum amount of compensation for pain and suffering are:

  • age
  • the severity of the injury
  • the length of time it should take the injury to fully heal
  •  treatment required to treat the personal injury (ie surgery required?)
  •  hospitalization?  rehabilitation? how long?
  • the physical and emotional damage that the injury has caused now and moving forward
  • pre-existing injuries

I will be honest, it is difficult to sue for pain and suffering after a car accident claim in Ontario. We have however had great success in helping our accident victims get the maximum amount of compensation for pain and suffering.

Nowadays,  in order to sue for pain and suffering, your injuries need to meet a legal threshold . The legal threshold must show a serious and permanent impairment of an important bodily function. This impairment can be viewed in many ways .  To keep things simple, it basically means that you cannot work, be a caregiver, or participate in normal activities of daily living as a result of your pain and suffering.

Also, to receive compensation for pain and suffering , your injuries must be permanent.  What makes this particularly difficult is the fact that it is sometimes tricky to show that an injury is permanent without waiting for at least a year after the accident . Accident victims are struggling throughout this year and it is difficult to try to rebuild a new life without knowing what lies ahead.

In order to claim compensation for pain and suffering in Ontario, the personal injuries suffered in or after the accident must be proven to the courts,should the insurance company try to deny compensation. Unfortunately, in most cases, that’s exactly what they will try to do. As an Ottawa personal injury lawyer, I find this to be so disturbing as often times people with “invisible” injuries are the people who need the compensation the most .That is why I take all pain and suffering claims in Ontario very seriously. I see how much pain people are in and how they have lost their everyday life to an accident.  I do everything I can to really help these accident victims.

Ontario Insurance: Pain and Suffering Claims Deductible

Not only to pain and suffering claims need to be a specific threshold in Ontario, the Ontario government has also legislated that they surpass a $30,000 deductible for pain and suffering claims. Sadly,what this translates to for accident victims is that they do not receive the first $30,000 in compensation; however, this  deductible does not apply to injury claims where the pain and suffering damages exceed $100,000. As an experienced Ottawa personal injury lawyer, this is where I can truly help. The system is not fair and that is why experienced personal injury lawyers can make all the difference.

If you have suffered and are continuing to suffer from an accident, we can help you.  You are not alone. Our dedicated team of Ottawa personal injury lawyers can help you get through these difficult times. We know you need financial compensation,as well as emotional.  We have all the resources you need are we are here to help.  For more information ,visit us at www.ottawainjury.ca

 

 


Ottawa personal injury lawyer cautioning all Ontario distracted drivers.

Ottawa Personal Injury Lawyer David Hollingsworth… Ontario Provincial Police have a new focus:  distracted drivers. The OPP are going to crack down on people driving who are doing almost anything other than driving. Yes, that’s right. What does that mean? It could be cell phone or texting, fiddling with the radio in the car, eating and drinking, smoking, dealing with children. Anything that distracts drivers from the road.  I can honestly say as an Ottawa personal injury lawyer, there are far too many accidents as a result of distracted driving. 2012 has just begun and already we have 8 people who have been killed on Ontario highways due to distracted driving.

I know we are all in a rush but please put the phone away.  Don’t even keep it within arms reach when driving.  That way you won’t be tempted to answer it. Return your calls/texts when you arrive SAFELY at your destination.  Before cell phones, people managed and so can we.

Please drive safely out there !                                    -Ottawa Personal Injury Lawyer David Hollingsworth

———————- This  Ottawa Injury Lawyer Blog is written regularly by Ottawa personal injury lawyer David Hollingsworth. Since 1999, David has been an Ottawa injury lawyer dedicated to helping Ontario accident victims and the families of accident victims who have been seriously injured or lost a loved one in an Ontario accident. This blog reports on accidents in eastern Ontario, personal injury issues, local Ottawa news and events and various news that relates to Ottawa, accidents and personal injury. Visit  www.ottawainjury.ca for more information. If you have a topic you would like me to write about or  if you have a question,  please call or email me: [email protected] (613) 978-9549

Youtube link LinkedIn linkFacebook linkTwitter linkWordpress link

Ottawa personal injury lawyer David Hollingsworth, Ontario accident lawyers, distracted driving


What does a personal injury lawyer do ?

What does a personal injury lawyer do?

I am asked this question every day. The truth is a personal injury lawyer plays a vital role in ensuring you get what you need after an accident.  Often times, insurance companies will try to work with you but keep in mind they are not working for you.  They are not representing you.  A personal injury lawyer knows what to expect from the insurance adjusters.  Most times, they will have had or seen a similar case and know exactly what to expect.  After all, this is what a personal injury lawyer does day in, day out. Most times, an accident victim will contact a personal injury lawyer and that allows the lawyer to take over and represent you.  They then start ordering the necessary reports needed to build your case and they make sure that you are getting the support you need to start to recover.  This support comes in many forms. It may be rehabilitation support, medical support, housekeeping, counselling, home modifications, etc…First things first, a personal injury lawyer will meet with you to determine what your needs are and then start working for you to fulfill these needs. After an accident, everything seems different.  The beginning is especially hard because it’s a new way of life.  I meet everyday with Ontario accident victims who are struggling to get back the life they once had before the accident. Accidents are terrible and unfortunately they will continue to happen.  Personal injury lawyers can help.  They can help rebuild lives not only of the accident victims, but also their families. Yes, accidents affect everyone and it’s important that everyone involved gets the support they need. Each case is unique and everyone will have different needs.  The important thing is that accident victims get the help and compensation they need.  A personal injury lawyer can help with that.

If you have been in an accident or a family member or loved one has been in an accident, you should consult a personal injury lawyer .  They can help and they will.  You have been through enough.

———————- This  Ottawa Injury Lawyer Blog is written regularly by Ottawa personal injury lawyer David Hollingsworth. Since 1999, David has been a dedicated Ottawa injury lawyer helping Ontario accident victims and the families of accident victims who have been seriously injured or lost a loved one in an Ontario accident. This blog reports on accidents in eastern Ontario, personal injury issues, local Ottawa news and events and various news that relates to Ottawa, accidents and personal injury. Visit  www.ottawainjury.ca for more information. If you have a topic you would like me to write about or  if you have a question,  call or email me: [email protected] (613) 978-9549

Youtube link LinkedIn linkFacebook linkTwitter linkWordpress link

Ottawa Personal Injury Lawyer Supports Reach Canada: Ottawa Organisation for people with disabilities.

Ottawa Personal Injury Lawyer David Hollingsworth..I am pleased to be supporting Ottawa’s REACH Canada tomorrow night .  I volunteer on the Board of Directors for Reach Canada and along with 350 other Ottawa community REACH supporters tomorrow night, we hope to raise funds to support people with disabilities in Ottawa. Reach aims to improve the quality of life for citizens with disabilities.

Last year, the annual REACH auction gala raised over $110 000. 00 for people with disabilities in Ottawa .  Hopefully we can do it again tomorrow night.

———————- The  Ottawa Injury Blog is written regularly by Ottawa personal injury lawyer David Hollingsworth. Since 1999, David has been an Ottawa injury lawyer representing Ontario accident victims and the families of accident victims who have lost a loved one in an Ontario accident. This blog reports on accidents in eastern Ontario, personal injury issues, local Ottawa news and events and various news that relates to Ottawa, accidents and personal injury.  Visit www.ottawainjury.ca for a free consultation and  more information. If you have a question, feel free to call or email [email protected]  (613) 978-9549

Ontario Personal Injury Lawyer , Ottawa  Accident Lawyers , Personal Injury Lawyers Ottawa  David Hollingsworth, Reach Canada

Youtube link LinkedIn linkFacebook linkTwitter link

Wordpress link


What is maximum compensation for chronic fatigue syndrome in Ontario ? Ottawa lawyer David Hollingsworth

Top Ottawa Injury Lawyers – David Hollingsworth on Compensation for Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome ?

chronic fatigue syndrome

photo credit Fede Racchi

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (“CFS”) is a real disorder affecting hundreds of thousands of people in North America.  We have our fair share of chronic fatigue syndrome sufferers here in Ottawa as well. Often the syndrome can present itself to a victim after an accident or injury. The cause of chronic fatigue syndrome is not perfectly understood, though the World Health Organization classifies it as a Disease of the Nervous System. Secondary to an accident, clients will often describe to their injury lawyer levels of fatigue they are experiencing. It is important for a person to also consult with their medical team to ensure that they are receiving the best attention possible to ensure for the best possible health. Your injury lawyer can help you with your recovery to ensure that you do not lose out on what accident benefits you may be rightfully entitled to.  The classification of CFS will involve several factors. Notably, a classification of CFS will entail (1) ruling out other conditions that you may suffer from and (2) it must be shown to be otherwise unexplained, relapsing fatigue that is new (i.e. you have not had this condition all your life, it is not predated fatigue); (3) that the fatigue is not the result of ongoing exertion; (4) that the fatigue is not relieved by rest; (5) and that the condition results in substantial decreases in your levels of occupational, social, educational, or personal activities.

Furthermore, to prove Chronic Fatigue Syndrome,  the patient must exhibit at least four of the following enumerated symptoms, which must persist for at least six months: (1) Difficulty with memory or concentration; (2) Sore throat; (3) Tender cervical (neck area) or axillary (underarm area) nodes; (4) Sleeping but not feeling rested; (5) Arthralgias (pain along the nerve of the joint) – no redness or swelling; (6) Headaches; (7) Muscle pain; (8) Post-exertional malaise, lasting more than one day. Our Ottawa injury lawyers work closely with medical professionals who specialize in chronic fatigue syndrome. We understand how difficult life can be living with this syndrome and are here to help.