Motor Vehicle Accident Litigation in Quinte
Motor vehicle accidents in Ontario are very serious, yet quite confusing, matters to handle. Our team at Pretsell Davies and Thompson Benton LLP wants to ensure that the process is made as simple as possible for our Quinte drivers. Although the laws and legislation can vary depending on the specific situation at hand, it is important that all Ontario motorists understand the basic rights and responsibilities available to them in regards to driver negligence. If you have been involved in a serious motor vehicle accident and require immediate consultation, please contact our office and we would be happy to walk through the process with you!
Motor vehicle accidents can result in a variety of different outcomes - some minimal and some major. In most cases, auto-insurance will cover the expenses of minimal outcomes - being auto repairs or replacement. In these fortunate circumstances, neither party was injured and one, or both, has auto insurance. The accident would fall within the parameters of the individuals’ automobile insurance policy and would not require further compensation. If, however, one of the people involved was injured/killed or there was property damage outside of the vehicle, there could be benefits available by law. In the case of injury, this would result in accident benefits or compensation regarding the personal injury or property damage.
In whichever case, it is imperative that the proper steps are taken in terms of filing an insurance claim and ensuring that losses are compensated for properly. Whether at fault or not, all parties involved have the right and responsibility to take action upon the immediate occurrence of a motor vehicle accident.
What Happens Immediately After The Accident?
In the case of a motor vehicle accident where no injury was caused - the following procedures should be abided by:
Report the accident to the insurance company, agent or broker that insures you.
- Review your automobile insurance policy (with specifics to coverages, rights and responsibilities).
- The insurance company will assess fault and settle the claim
In determining who is at fault in Ontario auto accidents, there are a series of scenarios investigated. Under the Ontario Insurance Act, there are 40 common accident scenarios listed as Fault Determination Rules. This list of predetermined scenarios can allow for a faster process of fault determination, as long as the necessary evidence is provided. On top of this, there are also a number of negligence acts that can also aid in determining who is at fault.
Acts of Negligence Can Include:
- Running a Red Light
- Distracted Driving
- Impaired Driving
- Failure to Use Headlights
It is important to understand that both the injured plaintiff and the defendant responsible for the injury can be at fault to different extents. This differing degree of contributory negligence will affect the amount of reimbursement distributed.
In the case of a motor vehicle accident where personal injury/death or property damage was involved, there are a series of accident benefits that are provided by law. These benefits are subject to entitlement and provided on the basis of fault (including varying degrees thereof) and extent of damages.
Examples of Accident Benefits:
- Income Replacement Benefits - Compensation meant to replace lost income due to the injury.
- Non Earner Benefits - Compensation if the injured person can no longer continue their normal state of life (applicable to those who do not qualify for Income Replacement or Caregiver benefits).
- Caregiver Benefits - Compensation for loss of a caregiver (whether personally or indirectly) in relation to the injury.
- Medical Benefits - Compensation for medical expenses related to injury.
- Rehabilitation Benefits- Compensation for rehabilitation expenses related to injury.
- Attendant Care Benefits - Payment for an aid or attendant as required through cause of injury.
- Compensation for Other Expenses Benefits - Including the compensation or payment for lost/damaged items, educational expenses, travel expenses etc. of, or relating to, the accident at hand.
- Death Benefits - Compensation made to family members of the deceased.
- Funeral Expenses Benefits - Compensation for funeral expenses.
In order to apply for any of the above accident benefits, the Accident Benefits Application Package must be completed.
Accident Benefits Application Package Forms:
- Application for Accident Benefits
- Employer’s Confirmation of income
- Disability Certificate
- Permission to Disclose Health Information
- Treatment Confirmation Form
These forms can be confusing and time consuming, however are necessary in order for further steps to be taken with your claim. Our team at Pretsell Davies Thompson Benton LLP is here to assist you in making the process easier. If any of these forms are complicated or confusing in any way, give us a call. We have extensive experience in this area and are pleased to provide a clearer explanation of the legal remedies available. We typically take these matters on a contingency basis and are more than happy to discuss the particulars of how that process works.
It is important to keep in mind the limitations in regards to qualifying for accident benefits - including time frame, fault, monetary compensation limitations, degree of injury etc. The limitation periods and all manners of legislative and legal obstacles inherent to the legislation in this area can be extensive and overwhelming, but our team is here to ease that burden.
After the necessary steps have been taken to apply for accident benefits, the next step is to have that application reviewed. This will determine the eligibility of the plaintiff in receiving funds. Under the Motor Vehicle Accident Claims Fund in Ontario, the minimum liability limit is $200,000 + legal costs.
If the situation projects the need to sue the party at fault, there are two specific claims that are typically utilized:
- General and Special Damages
- Family Law Act claims
Take careful consideration and consult one of our qualified personal injury and family law lawyers when making the decision to sue.
Let Our Lawyers Fight For You
The benefits of having a knowledgeable and experienced lawyer walk you through legal processes are immense. You can rest assured that your case is being handled by our qualified litigation attorneys with your best interest and benefit as our priority.
In pursuing your case, our lawyers will:
- Examine your policies
- Investigate who is at fault
- Uphold your rights
- Calculate the extent of damage
- Negotiate on your behalf (with insurance companies, involved parties, court cases etc.)
- Prepare all paperwork
- Ensure you are receiving the best possible compensation
Our team at Pretsell Davies Thomas Benton LLP is continually providing our clients with the most practical and cost-effective legal solutions in Belleville and Picton. As a full service law firm, providing the best legal expertise and representation to a diverse client base in the Quinte, Prince Edward County, and surrounding regions, we strive to meet and exceed the expectations of each of our clients.
If you have been involved in a serious motor accident recently, and are in need of a specialized law firm that deals specifically with motor vehicle accidents, give us a call or fill in the form below and we will get in touch with you.