Burlington Car Accident Lawyers

Burlington Car Accident Lawyers

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A motor vehicle accident is a frightening and often life-changing experience. You might be:

  • a driver or a passenger in a car accident
  • a motorcyclist in a motorcycle accident
  • a pedestrian hit by a car
  • or a cyclist hit by a car on your bike

The Burlington lawyers at Martin & Hillyer Associates are experts in car accident litigation and car insurance claims for motorists, cyclists and pedestrians. We have over 40 years of experience helping car accident victims in Burlington, Halton and surrounding areas to maximize their successful recovery.

At Martin & Hillyer, we take a holistic approach to your recovery:

  • recovering financial compensation for what you've lost
  • recovering and rehabilitating from your injuries
  • recovering an empowered and fulfilling life despite ongoing injuries

Understanding your personal recovery priorities in all three areas and helping you attain them can be difficult for large, out-of-town law firms and firms that are stretched across the province.


  • Banner Car Accident2

    We Can Help

    Our local lawyers will take the time to understand your unique priorities in order to give you the personalized advice you need to reach your recovery goals. Learn more about our personal approach and the difference having a local car accident lawyer can make.


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Getting the Benefits You Need

Getting the Benefits You Need

When you’ve been injured in a car accident in Ontario, accident benefits insurance can provide you with funding to help you rehabilitate from your injuries, and to compensate you for some of your losses – regardless of whose fault the accident was. This is called no fault insurance.

Accident benefits are provided by your own insurance company and will pay for:

  • medical and rehabilitative treatment not funded by OHIP
  • income replacement benefits
  • attendant care and housekeeping benefits
  • non-earner benefits
  • compensation for lost education expenses
  • and more

When it comes to choosing a lawyer to help you deal with your insurance company and succeed in your recovery, local matters. One of our biggest strengths as a proudly local firm is our strong relationship with the local legal community as well as local healthcare and rehabilitation specialists. We will work with you and your treating professionals to help you get the treatment and assistance you need, close to home, and from reliable and recommended service providers.

Fighting Insurance Companies to Get What's Yours

No one likes paying insurance premiums, but at least we know the benefits we’ve paid for will be there for us when we need them… at least, that’s the idea. Unfortunately, all too often, Ontarians injured in car accidents get let down by their insurance companies in their time of need. They end up having to fight not only the driver who caused their injuries, but also their own insurance company.

Disputes often arise with your insurance company when they:

  • wrongly decide that your injury is a “minor injury” (or is in the “MIG”) and restrict the benefits you can claim
  • refuse to recognize that you have suffered a “catastrophic injury” and fail to pay the full benefits to which you are entitled
  • wrongly deny treatment plans for treatment recommended by your healthcare providers to help you recover from and manage your injuries
  • fail to pay income replacement benefits even though you are still unable to work because of your injuries

If you’ve been injured in an accident, you need to spend your energy focusing on your recovery, not on trying to navigate the complex world of insurance dispute resolution. To effectively stand up for your rights against a big insurance company, it helps to have the full backing of our team of knowledgeable and experienced car insurance lawyers to advise you on the intricacies of the car insurance dispute system, and to successfully stand up for your rights when your insurance company breaks its promises.

Fair Compensation by Starting a Lawsuit

Getting you the benefits you need from your car insurance company is only half the battle. In cases where someone else was at fault for the car crash that caused your injuries, it may be possible to start a lawsuit against that driver to get additional compensation from his or her insurance company.

It’s not always easy to start a lawsuit for a car accident in Ontario, and recent changes in the law have made it even harder for injured people to recover fair compensation. Finding a lawyer with expertise in Ontario’s complex system for car accident lawsuits is more important than ever to ensure you can get compensation from the insurance company of the driver who caused your losses.

Our team of local Burlington car accident lawyers, including Bruce Hillyer, Stephen Abraham, David Hayward, Claire Wilkinson, Laura Hillyer, James Page, and Kennedy Nolan are all experienced lawyers with a special familiarity with Ontario’s new rules around car accident lawsuits.

We will work to build your case, advise you about your options, and advocate tirelessly on your behalf to maximize the compensation you recover – either from a settlement, or after fighting all the way through a trial.

How Local Car Accident Lawyers Can Help You

  • To get the best results to meet your goals, it's essential that your lawyer take the time to understand your personal recovery priorities, and that they have the local knowledge and contacts to help you achieve them.

    This can be difficult for large, out-of-town firms and firms that are stretched across the province. A one-size-fits-all, "cookie-cutter" approach might streamline the work for them, but it can also mean reduced settlements and impersonal advice that doesn't take into account all of your unique priorities and goals.

  • As a proudly local firm, we believe you should be able to count on a personal relationship with your lawyer, and get their individualized advice when you need it. For each of our clients, we'll take the time to get to know them and to effectively understand and address all of their unique goals.

    If you need advice after a car accident, get in touch with us for free consultation to find out what your options are, and learn how we can help you in your recovery.

 

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Frequently Asked Questions

CAR ACCIDENTS


What’s the first thing I should do if I’ve been in a car accident?

Click here to download our free car accident checklist – 10 simple steps to help you ensure your rights are protected after an accident.


How much does a lawsuit cost? What is a contingency fee? What are disbursements?

It’s important for you to understand how your lawyer will be paid. During your initial consultation, we will speak with you in detail about how our legal fees and expenses will work in your specific case so that you understand all your options before deciding if and how you would like to proceed.

Lawyers usually charge fees in one of three ways:

  1. A contingency fee is usually used in personal injury and insurance litigation. Under a contingency fee, you do not pay your lawyer’s fees until the end of your case, and the fee depends on the result obtained in your case. Typically, the lawyer’s fee will be a fixed percentage of any amount recovered on your behalf. This means that if nothing is recovered, the lawyer will not charge you a fee. In this way, the risk of litigation can be shared between the client and the lawyer.

    When you see headlines in advertising such as “no win, no fee” or “you don’t pay unless we win,” a contingency fee arrangement is what is being referred to. But these headlines can be misleading: what counts as a “win?” Do expenses still have to be paid? How is the fee calculated? We believe it’s important that you understand exactly what a contingency fee is, and what it is not.

  2. In most other cases, where a contingency fee is not available, lawyers will charge an hourly rate. When charging on an hourly basis, the lawyer and his or her staff bill you at a set hourly rate for all the time they spend working on your file. Hourly rates are used in most non-litigation work, including real estate, estate planning, corporate and commercial transactions, business law, family law, etc. Hourly rates may also be charged in litigation cases where a contingency fee is not feasible.

  3. A final option is a flat rate fee, which is only used for routine legal services such as notarizing a document or drafting a simple will or power of attorney.

In addition to fees, lawyers will charge for the disbursements they have to incur when working on your file. Disbursements are expenses that must be paid for over the course of your case and include things like paying court fees, paying doctors for copies of their records or for medical opinions, paying for administrative expenses such as photocopying, couriers and long distance calls, and so on. Disbursements are separate from the lawyer’s fee for the services they provide.

To find out more about the legal fees and expenses that would apply in your case, get in touch with us to arrange a consultation.


How long can I wait to start a lawsuit? Is there a time limit?

Limitation periods restrict how long a person has to start a lawsuit for most types of lawsuits in Ontario. In most (but not all) cases, a person has 2 years from the date of an injury or loss to start a lawsuit against someone. If someone does not start a lawsuit before the limitation date, in most cases they are unable to ever do so – even if they had no idea a limitation period existed.

Sometimes it is tricky to determine a precise limitation date, particularly if your injuries weren’t (and could not have been) clear right away, or if the incidents that caused your injuries took place over an extended period.

Since the consequences of missing a limitation period are so serious, it is important that you speak with a lawyer as soon as possible after you have suffered a loss so that he or she can tell you what limitation period applies. Even if you think you might have already missed the limitation period, you should speak with a lawyer to confirm, since there are sometimes exceptions and ways around the deadline that could save your claim.

In some cases, in addition to a limitation period, you need to worry about a notice period. This is a period of time within which you need to warn the defendant that you are going to sue them in the future. They usually apply when governments are the defendants.

Notice periods are usually much shorter than limitation periods – for example, in most cases you only have 10 days to warn a municipality if you are going to sue it for a dangerous condition on a sidewalk.

Missing a notice period without a very good reason can prevent you from starting your case at all, so again – make sure you speak with a lawyer as soon as possible to ensure no time limits are missed.


What benefits will my insurance company provide if I’ve been in a car accident?

What compensation can I recover if I start a lawsuit? Who pays?

Will my insurance premiums be affected if I make a claim or start a lawsuit?

Is it always possible to start a lawsuit if I’ve been injured in a car accident?

What are the main stages of a lawsuit?

Will my case settle, or will I have to go to court?

The vast majority of lawsuits in Ontario settle before they go to court. A settlement is where both sides in the lawsuit voluntarily agree to a compromise in order to resolve a dispute without the costs, risks and delays that come with taking a case to court. If your case is settled, the defendant will agree to pay you some amount of money for your damages, and in exchange, you will agree to drop your lawsuit.

While you won’t have to go to court if a case settles, there are other preliminary stages your case might go through that you will have to participate in.

A settlement has to be voluntary for both sides, and we can't force a defendant to settle. Even if a defendant makes an offer to settle, if the offer doesn’t adequately compensate you for your losses, it may be our advice that you not settle your case.

If a case does not settle, you can go to court to have a judge or jury make a final decision. Going to court increases the costs and risks in your case, but sometimes, where a reasonable settlement is not possible, it is the only way to reach a fair outcome.

We will be there to advise you and represent your interests throughout any settlement negotiations, and throughout a court case if one is necessary. In all cases, the decision about whether to settle your case or to take it to court will be yours to make.


My insurance company wants to settle my accident benefits claim. Should I?

You do not have to settle with your insurance company. Depending on the money being offered, however, settlement may be in your best interest. You need to consider such things as future medical expenses, lost wages, and potential health complications. Do not settle with an insurance company until you have spoken to a lawyer.


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If your matter is urgent or of a sensitive nature, please call us at (905) 637-5641 to arrange a meeting. Otherwise, complete the form below and we will contact you within 1 business day to arrange your consultation. Questions about what to expect from a legal consultation? Click here for more information about the process.

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Martin & Hillyer Associates
2122 Old Lakeshore Road
Burlington, ON L7R 1A3


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Martin & Hillyer Associates
2122 Old Lakeshore Road
Burlington, ON L7R 1A3

     

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The information on this site is not legal advice, and you should not rely upon it as such. If you have a legal question, you should always consult with a lawyer.
Even if you use this site or consult with us, remember that we are not retained to represent you and no lawyer-client relationship exists unless and until you receive written confirmation from us.