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Motor Vehicle Accidents
In a serious motor vehicle accident, a life can change forever in an instant. Whether you are a driver or passenger involved in a single or multi-vehicle crash, or a pedestrian or cyclist who has been struck, the force of the impact can cause injury, disability or death.
The costs associated with managing such a life-altering event can be immense. Choosing an experienced, knowledgeable and trusted motor vehicle accident lawyer to help you access the benefits and recover the damages that you deserve, will be one of the most important decisions you make.
Gluckstein Personal Injury Lawyers have been helping victims of motor vehicles accidents for almost 60 years. Our team has the expertise to handle the most challenging and complex cases.
If you or a loved one has sustained a serious injury in a motor vehicle accident, contact a Gluckstein Personal Injury Lawyer as soon as possible for a free, no obligation consultation to discuss your options.
What counts as a motor vehicle accident?
Types of motor vehicle accidents.
The different types of motor vehicle accident claims include:
- Automobile accidents: car accidents involving one or more vehicles caused by distracted driving, driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, vehicles in poor repair, hit-and-run collisions, weather-related accidents and/or dangerous driving.
- Long-haul transport truck and commercial vehicle accidents: these may result from poor training, unsafe working conditions, distracted driving, impaired driving, and unsafe vehicle maintenance.
- Motorcycle accidents: these accidents often result in severe injuries or death due to limited rider protection from other vehicles.
- Cyclists or pedestrian accidents: such accidents typically involve motor vehicles colliding with a cyclist or pedestrian or otherwise causing a cyclist or pedestrian to injure themselves to avoid being struck.
- Bus accidents: municipal, intercity, school, sight-seeing buses or coaches can be involved in single-vehicle accidents or multi-vehicle collisions injuring passengers and others.
- ATV and snowmobile accidents: riders of these pleasure vehicles must carry appropriate motor vehicle insurance coverage, and may cause injury or be injured in collisions or roll-overs.
- Boating accidents: operators, passengers, or bystanders (swimmers, other boaters or people in the water or along the shore) can be involved in collisions or negligent actions causing injuries.
- Airplane and train accidents: excessive turbulence, crashes, collisions or derailments can result in catastrophic injuries and loss of life. Class actions or mass torts may be necessary if there are significant numbers of casualties.
Two types of motor vehicle accident claims.
A person involved in a motor vehicle accident has two ways to make a claim for compensation:
- Anyone involved in a motor vehicle accident in Ontario may be eligible for the statutory accident benefits - even if they don’t own a motor vehicle or have motor vehicle insurance coverage. These benefits are referred to as “statutory no-fault accident benefits”.
- A person involved in a motor vehicle accident who is deemed to be not at fault or only partly at fault can file a lawsuit and make a tort claim for damages caused by another person’s negligence.
Accident benefit claims.
No fault accident benefits are pursued by an accident victim through his or her own automobile insurance (or the insurance of a driver involved in the accident) for:
- Medical and rehabilitation benefits.
- Attendant care benefits.
- Income replacement benefits.
- Non-earner benefits.
- Caregiver benefits.
- Housekeeping benefits.
- Death and funeral benefits.
- Other benefits.
While all of these benefits are capped at a certain amount (that may change each year as a result of inflation), the nature and extent of your injuries, disabilities and personal circumstances will determine how much you will be eligible to claim or receive. If no one involved in the accident has motor vehicle insurance (or the accident is the result of a hit and run), you may be able to make a claim for accident benefits through Ontario’s Motor Vehicle Accidents Claim Fund.
The no-fault accident benefits system was designed to ensure that all motor vehicle accident victims (and certain eligible relatives) would be able to receive benefits to aid in their recovery in a timely manner. After a motor vehicle accident, you must notify your insurance company within seven days, or as soon as reasonably possible, that you wish to apply for no-fault accident benefits, and you must file a completed Application Form (OCF-1) with your insurance company within 30 days after receiving the documents from the insurer.
Insurance companies sometimes delay or deny these benefits unfairly. An experienced motor vehicle accident lawyer from Gluckstein Personal Injury Lawyers can help you fight to get what you deserve. We know how to deal with insurers to get results so that you can focus on healing.
A tort claim is one that is made for damages is a civil lawsuit against a negligent person involved in your accident, who caused or contributed to your injuries. Even if you were partly responsible for the accident, if someone else bears more of the blame, you can seek compensation. While no amount of money can bring back all that you may have lost, awards for damages are designed to acknowledge your pain, suffering, loss of enjoyment of life and pecuniary (calculable) losses, including loss of income, health care expenses, Family Law Act damages (i.e. claims by certain family members), housekeeping and home maintenance expenses.
To make a tort claim in a motor vehicle case, your injuries must impact your life in such a way that a certain legal threshold for compensation is met. You must show evidence, largely medical, that you have sustained a permanent serious impairment of an important physical, mental or psychological function; or permanent serious disfigurement. You have two years to bring a lawsuit against the at-fault party for a personal injury.
Insurance companies may try to convince you that your injuries do not meet this “impairment” threshold or may make a lowball offer early on to settle your claim in the hopes you won’t pursue what you might rightly deserve. Gluckstein Personal Injury Lawyers’ expertise with motor vehicle accident claims can assess whether you have a case and what a fair settlement should look like.
What to do if you’ve been hurt in a motor vehicle accident.
In the aftermath of a serious motor vehicle accident, you may be in a state of shock and/or so severely injured that you are incapacitated. But, if you are able to take certain steps, you can protect yourself, your loved ones and your rights by trying to do the following:
- Ensure all people involved in the accident are safe and stable.
- Call for help from first responders if any injuries require immediate attention and always air on the side of caution if you are in doubt (some injuries, such as head trauma, internal bleeding, or muscle strains are not readily apparent).
- Stay at the scene of the accident (if safe and not in an isolated area) until it is appropriate to leave.
- Exchange contact information and insurance information with all people involved. Ask for contact information for any witnesses.
- Take photos or video of your injuries and the accident site.
- Make note of anything that could have contributed to the accident such as poor weather or visibility, and record how you are feeling and how your injuries are affecting your day-to-day life following your injury.
- Be discreet and limit what you say to other people involved in the accident and even your family or through social media (you may unintentionally say something that could hurt your ability to obtain compensation).
- Go to the hospital for serious injuries and see your doctor as soon as possible for injury assessments and follow-ups as necessary.
- Contact a personal injury lawyer before speaking to any insurance provider (particularly one representing an at-fault party).
How can a personal injury lawyer help?
Sometimes motor vehicle accident victims discover that insurers add insult to injury by trying to reduce their liability to you at a time when you are distracted by the upheaval in your life, or fearful that you won’t do any better than a lowball first offer. When your injuries or distress put you at a disadvantage when compared to people who know the ins and outs of the insurance process, you need an advocate who can level the playing field.
Gluckstein Personal Injury Lawyers’ motor vehicle accident lawyers have the knowledge, experience, and skill to ensure you can make the strongest case for accident benefits and/or damages. Not only are we familiar with the strategies insurance companies use to limit their exposure to your legitimate claims, but we also have access to a network of experts who can be called on to properly assess your injuries or disabilities.
Our lawyers are tenacious when representing our clients in court or at the negotiating table, but also compassionate and caring when engaging you. The Gluckstein team also includes client liaisons and former medical staff whose job it is to guide you through the legal process and other aspects of your recovery. Our commitment to full circle care means that you can count on us to be on your side beyond the claims process and ensure that you have the support you need to rebuild your life after a motor vehicle accident.
Contact use for your free, no obligation consultation.
If you’re unsure of your next steps following a serious motor vehicle accident, a free, no obligation consultation with Gluckstein Personal Injury Lawyers can bring clarity. After listening to what happened with an empathetic ear, we will discuss the range of options that you have before you. If we believe we can help you access accident benefits and/or damages for your losses, we will offer to represent you and outline our next steps and plan of action. And, even if we determine we can’t be of service to you, we will always be straightforward in explaining why and offering suggestions for finding closure following a personal injury from a motor vehicle accident. You have nothing to lose and so much to gain when you contact Gluckstein Personal Injury Lawyers, so make the call today.
Shirley M."Mr. Rastin listened very carefully to our concerns of the effect the injuries will have on our future. He also showed great compassion, something much appreciated when anxiety is all you feel."
Annie Liu"We are so very lucky to have met this team! We sincerely recommend Jane Lou and Gluckstein Lawyers!"
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Podcasts & Videos.
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