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Personal Injury and Litigation Blogs

National Regulators Criticize Auto Insurers

The Canadian Council of Insurance Regulators (CCIR) is a national association of provincial and territorial governments. They recently released two related reports: their Annual Statement on Market Conduct (ASMC) and their Cooperative Fair Treatment of Customers (FTC) Review. These lay out the standards expected of insurance companies in dealing with their customers and provide data on how many insurers are meeting these standards (and to what extent) including key issues

Broad range of “shadow” pandemic disability claims anticipated

Disability lawyers can expect continued demand in 2022 from various COVID-related issues. We have recently written articles about the denial of disability insurance claims related to “long-haul” COVID-19 symptoms. The “shadow” pandemic includes other lingering health issues that will affect short-term disability (STD) and long-term disability (LTD) insurance claims. According to the 2021 Benefits Canada Healthcare Survey, more than half of employer benefits plan sponsors said they anticipate different health

Auto insurance across Canada – UPDATE

The Insurance Bureau of Canada recently released their annual fact book. This includes a cross-Canada comparison of auto insurance systems, summarized here plus our update for Alberta. Quebec and Manitoba have government-run pure no-fault insurance regimes, with no right to sue for pain and suffering, nor for economic loss in excess of no-fault benefits. British Columbia’s new no-fault system allows claims for pain and suffering up to $5,627 for

Heads up: Half of defence lawyers expect to be busier next year

Insurance Business Canada recently released the results of a large nation-wide survey of insurance companies and the lawyers they retain. The good news for plaintiff lawyers is that half (47%) of defence lawyers expect more work in the coming year, so you can too. The other half anticipates the same workload as this year; none expect their workload to decrease. IBC asked about the biggest legal issues facing the industry

Litigation Loans For ODSP Recipients

If any of your clients are receiving Ontario Disability Support Program benefits while waiting for an insurance settlement for personal injury, they might qualify for a loan from Nudorra Capital. Nudorra can lend up to ten per cent (10%) of the claim’s value, under certain conditions. Please note that we cannot lend funds on a Structured Settlement. The key is to maximize the amount of the settlement that ODSP does

Add Ontario to the provinces reviewing auto insurance

In 2020, Alberta released a report that looked at auto insurance across Canada and in other countries. The panel of three experts recommended a no-fault auto insurance system, like that in British Columbia. This year, Quebec’s Panel of Experts on Automobile Insurance Contributions (Conseil d’experts sur les contributions d’assurance automobile) invited the public to voice their opinions on the amendments proposed by the Société de l’assurance automobile du Québec (SAAQ)

Insurance changes make life harder for plaintiff counsel

A few years ago, we asked Ontario lawyers about the increasing difficulty of practising personal injury law, given the province’s changes to automobile insurance. Recent changes by the British Columbia and Alberta governments are creating similar problems for plaintiff personal injury lawyers in Western Canada. We interviewed Marc Spivak, a partner at Devry Smith Frank LLP in Toronto, for our last article. The trends he identified then have continued, in

COVID-19 “long-haulers” face disability insurance difficulties

A growing number of people report serious long-lasting, debilitating effects from the COVID-19 virus weeks and months after infection.  These people are known as “long-haulers”. Long-haulers are characterized as those who have been sick with COVID-19 symptoms for one month or more and continue to experience the impact of the virus in every aspect of their daily functioning.  The number of long-haulers is unknown, but in the USA, estimates are

Could ICBC changes spread across Canada?

Provincial governments across Canada are constantly looking for ways to reduce auto insurance rates. To do this, they have tried public and private insurance regimes, changed coverage and benefits, or instituted tribunals to streamline legal systems. British Columbia’s latest changes could tempt other provinces to significantly reduce injured plaintiffs’ access to justice. In 2020, BC’s NDP government introduced Bill 11, the Attorney General Statutes (Vehicle Insurance) Amendment Act, 2020. This

Canada’s Courts were Backlogged before the COVID Crisis

For several years, personal injury lawyers representing plaintiffs have told us many reasons that cases take too long. Litigious insurance companies, requests for overly detailed medical reports, centralization of adjusters, armies of experts, and defence counsel delaying tactics have all been mentioned. In addition, the court systems in many provinces have suffered systemic problems for years. In British Columbia, a record of 140 provincial Supreme Court trials, were postponed in

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