Park and Playground Safety

Parks are opening up and kids are ready to get out in the sun and play. Time spent at the park allows children to socialize, get some exercise, and explore and engage with age-appropriate challenges in a supervised environment. Even with an adult supervising the fun, accidents can still happen– bruises, falls, scraped knees and elbows, and other risks and injuries are all possible on the playground. According to the Canadian Public Health Association “An analysis of playground falls between 1994 and 2003 estimated that each year 2,500 children below 14 years of age were hospitalized for serious injuries. Of this total, 81% had suffered a fracture while 14% were admitted for a head injury…”. Teaching kids about the importance of playing safe and the rules of the park is critical in avoiding injuries and maintaining fun. Here are some things you can do to ensure your child remains safe.

Enjoying the carefree energy your child has is important to healthy growth and development, but it can be dampened by an injury that could have been avoided. As a parent or guardian, you are responsible for remaining aware of potential risks such as unsafe climbing or running, arguments on the playground, and any dangers in the environment. If you or your child has experienced an injury obtained at a park or playground you may be eligible for compensation. Contact the professionals at Dye & Russell for your free claim assessment today.

Even if you try to keep your eyes on your kids as much as possible, an accident can happen before you have time to react. Preparing before enjoying the many fun activities, like the slide and swings, take a look at the playground park area for any potential risks. The play equipment and play spaces must meet CSA (Canadian Standards Association) standards for safety. Shock-absorbing materials such as woodchips, synthetic shredded rubber or sand should be used for a safer and softer area to play in. All equipment should also be free of breakage or sharp and dangerous areas.

Glass, nails, bolts, or bottles are all things that can be left behind by careless people and have the potential to injure your child. Take a thorough look around before playing in the sand or grass in the park and playground area.

If you believe there are safety issues with a playground reach out to your park’s local operator. An unsafe play area can be avoided with proper maintenance– if you or your child has been injured due to negligence, contacting a personal injury lawyer like the ones at Dye & Russell is the right step on the road to recovery.

One of the most important things in keeping any kids safe at the park is to teach them about how to play and communicate safely. Go over the rules of the playground and ensure your child understands the risks that come with playing on any park structures. Make sure they stay or play in age-appropriate areas that are meant for them specifically.

Looking after your child’s safety while they run around and enjoy the excitement of park activities is a hard job, and sometimes an injury can happen. If you or a loved one has been involved in an accident at a park or playground, contact the professionals at Dye & Russell today for your FREE Claim Assessment and more helpful resources. Reach us toll-free at 1-877-883-6171 or visit us online to speak with a live agent. Your road to recovery is important to us.

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Skye OliverPark and Playground Safety
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Boating Safety Tips: What You Need To Know

The warmer months are here and that means enjoying the sun and summer activities. Boating is incredibly popular with things to do like tubbing, water skiing, fishing, or swimming out in the lake. These are all fun things to de-stress and enjoy this sunny season, but nevertheless, it is crucial to be aware of boat safety rules and regulations. According to the Canadian Red Cross there are over 125+ preventable boating-related fatalities that happen across Canada each year.

If you are your loved ones are planning on enjoying some time on a boat this summer, then here are some ways to prepare for the ride and minimize the risk of injury:


Make a Checklist

It is easy to get caught up in the excitement of getting out on a boat— having a thorough checklist to go over before taking off is a great way to be prepared for any possible emergencies out on the water.

Check the Weather

Take a look at the local weather forecast. The days leading up to your departure is crucial to ensuring you are aware of any possibly changes that could put you in danger. Avoid strong or rough winds, darkening clouds, temperature fluxes, or changes to the waves. Getting caught in a storm can result in serious injury to you or your passengers. If you find yourself in this position our lawyers at Dye & Russell know what to do to get you the compensation you deserve. Do not delay, contact us today if you have sustained injuries or damages on a boat in Ontario.

Develop a Float Plan

Inform a family member or marina staff of your contact information and emergency plan of action. Letting someone know this information along with trip destinations, the warning or help signals to be used, and your boats registration information can be critical in getting you to safety if an emergency occurs. Even the most experienced boaters can sustain injuries or be involved in accidents out on the water. Dye & Russell has the experience to help in your boating accident personal injury case.

Have your tools ready

There are many items that you need to have onboard to ensure everyone is safe while out on the water. Some items and equipment you will need but are not limited to:

  • Life jackets
  • First aid kit
  • Sunscreen
  • Food and water
  • Proper identification, licenses, boat documentation
  • Cellphone and wireless charging bank
  • Electrical tape
  • Emergency flashlight
  • Distress signals
  • Fire extinguisher
  • Extra fuel
  • Emergency paddles
  • Blankets

Wear A Life Jacket

Did you know the Red Cross reported that less than 50% of Canadians always wear their life jackets when boating? Life jackets are crucial in the prevention of accidental drownings and even help in preventing hypothermia when exposed to cold water conditions for too long.

Besides being a legal requirement, another reason to have life jackets on board is for individuals that may not know how to swim or are generally weak swimmers. In the event of an accident where flooding occurs and your boat begins taking on water, the risk of a slip and fall injury increases. Wearing a life jacket can save a life if someone were to slip and fall into the water or experience a head injury.

Exploring the many great lakes and waters that Canada has to offer is exciting but knowing proper boat safety is key in achieving an accident-free summer. There are many opportunities for injury with all of the different types of activities to enjoy in or on the water, knowing who to contact in the wake of an accident will reduce the stress and anxiety related to your injury.

 

If you or a loved one has been involved in an accident, contact the professionals at Dye & Russell today for your FREE Claim Assessment and more helpful resources. Reach us toll free at 1-877-883-6171 or visit us online to speak with a live agent. Your road to recovery is important to us.

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Working from Home: Ergonomic Principles

Working from home has become and continues to be how many people are working during the COVID-19 pandemic. Some of those are lucky enough to have a proper work from home set up and dedicated office space, but a majority are setting up workstations wherever they fit. Whether it’s the dining room table, a coffee table or your lap, people across the province are having to adjust their home lives to accommodate work arrangements.

While working from home does have its benefits, an improper work set up can take a toll on your body. To help combat the aches and pains which can lead to chronic pain and other associated injuries, being familiar with the ergonomic principles may help reduce the impact of work-related injuries.

If you don’t want to visit the doctor for eventual musculoskeletal disorders, implement the following workstation set up guidelines outlined by Ergo Consulting.

 

Establish an appropriate work location

Having a dedicated workspace is important. If you’re new to working from home, there are a few things to consider when choosing your work spot. Try finding a spot where the table is between 27-29” high. Tables higher than this run you the risk of neck and shoulder pain or discomfort. Having a space with minimal distractions is also important. If you’re looking after young children while attempting to work at home, consider creating a daily routine for them. During the times you need to be the most productive or have conference calls, schedule quiet time for reading or think about putting a movie or TV show on.

Get the best chair

In a perfect world, everyone would have fully adjustable office chairs. For the majority of people that don’t, choose a chair that provides back support, allows you to sit upright and supports your upper body weight on the backrest. You should be seated so your elbow height is as close to level with your work surface as possible.

Get a footrest

Sit down, look at your legs. Your thighs specifically. You should be seated so your thighs are parallel with the floor and your feet firmly planted on the ground. There is a good possibility if you’re of average height or shorter, that you’ll benefit from a footrest.

Use external hardware

According to the Office Ergonomics Application Standard for Workplace Ergonomics, laptops shouldn’t be used for prolonged computer entry. The exception being a laptop that is hooked up to a docking station or other external devices. Laptops can put additional strain on your neck because the monitor height isn’t high enough. If you must use a laptop it’s recommended that it be raised/elevated, so the screen becomes level with your eye height. This can be achieved by placing the laptop on a stack of books or by using a monitor riser. An external mouse and keyboard are also beneficial and positioned at elbow height on the same surface.

Get moving

Getting up and moving around every 30-60 minutes to stretch or walk around is good for your ergonomic health. It should be done even more frequently the less “ideal” your workstation set up is. Standing around and pacing while you’re on a conference call or creating your own stand up desk by putting your computer on a filing cabinet or counter (for short periods of time) are a couple of ways of getting up, moving around and changing your posture.

Mental Health

Anyone new to working from home can tell you it can be isolating. Especially if you’re someone who enjoys the social atmosphere that an office environment brings. Make a point of calling colleagues for larger issues rather than writing a lengthy email; video conferencing is another popular option. Most importantly, get outside. Give yourself a reason to get dressed and schedule yourself a daily walk around the neighbourhood. The fresh air will do you wonders!

 

For anyone working from home, make sure you are following the ergonomic principles to reduce potential injury. Neck, back and shoulder pain can start as just that but can quickly become chronic pain. Call an experienced lawyer like the ones at Dye and Russell Personal Injury Lawyers if you or someone you know is experiencing pain due to a poor workstation set up.

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Skye OliverWorking from Home: Ergonomic Principles
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Helping Canadians During COVID-19: Disability Tax Credit (DTC)

 

It’s no surprise that Canadians are facing challenges during this difficult time that is COVID-19. Families may be facing job insecurities or experiencing increases in costs for medications, medical supplies and PSWs (personal support workers).

Earlier this month Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau announced there would be increased financial support to help Canadians with disabilities offset extra expenses during the COVID-19 pandemic. This support will be available to persons who are certificate holders of the Disability Tax Credit as of June 1, 2020.

 

What is the Disability Tax Credit (DTC)?

The Disability Tax Credit is a non-refundable tax credit for persons with disabilities or their supporting person. The objective of the tax credit is to help reduce the income tax they may be required to pay.

Being eligible for the DTC can also lead to other federal, provincial, or territorial programs.

 

Who is eligible for the DTC?

To be eligible, the Government of Canada must approve your application (Form T2201, Disability Tax Credit Certificate). The form is completed by a medical practitioner who certifies the person has a severe & prolonged impairment. The effects must also be described.

According to the Government of Canada one of the four requirements must be met to be eligible:

  • “be blind
  • be markedly restricted in at least one of the basic activities of daily living
  • be significantly restricted in two or more or the basic activities of daily living (can include a vision impairment)
  • need life-sustaining therapy

In addition, the person’s impairment must meet all of the following criteria:

  • be prolonged, which means the impairment has lasted, or is expected to last for a continuous period of at least 12 months
  • be present all or substantially all the time (at least 90% of the time)”

 

What does the additional support look like?

The financial aid being provided is a one-time tax-free payment. Those that are eligible for this one-time payment will receive it automatically.

  • Canadians with a valid Disability Tax Credit certificate will receive $600
  • Canadians with a valid Disability Tax Credit certificate & eligible for the Old Age Security (OAS) pension will receive $300
  • Canadians with a valid Disability Tax Credit certificate, are eligible for the OAS pension & the Guaranteed Income Supplement (GIS) will receive $100

 

How to apply

Form T2201, Disability Tax Credit Certificate is a two-part form. Part A, to be filled out by the person with the disability and Part B, to be filled out by a medial practitioner. Once the form is received the application is reviewed by the CRA (Canada Revenue Agency). A notice of determination is sent to inform you of the decision made.

 

If you or someone you know has been denied or cut-off from disability benefits because the appropriate treatment cannot be continued for reasons related to COVID-19, or other causes, it’s important you reach out to our experts at Dye and Russell immediately.

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Skye OliverHelping Canadians During COVID-19: Disability Tax Credit (DTC)
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Long-Term Disability & COVID-19

The COVID-19 pandemic has swept uncertainty, frustration and anger across our Country. It has impacted people in all aspects of their lives. There are people that aren’t able to continue working right now and those that are working – in essential services or remotely – are faced with challenges like they’ve never seen.

For a lot of people, the fear of contracting and transmitting the virus and battle with self-isolation/social distancing is enough to lead to severe anxiety, depression, or other types of mental illnesses. Others have similar feelings, but they stem from the fear of returning to work and going into public places or the ability to cope after losing a loved as a result of the virus.

We want to reassure you that you’re not alone. Many clients have reached out with their concerns and we’re here to help.

 

Mental Health During COVID-19

Balancing home-life and work-life while also trying to manage the additional stress, fear and anxiety brought on by COVID-19 is a lot to handle. A million things are running through your head.

 

Will I catch Coronavirus? What if it’s serious?

 I’m worried about my family members who work in health care.

 Will this impact my job? Will I have a job once this is over?

 I can’t afford to lose another client. I’m already struggling.

 I hope my partner doesn’t lose their job.

 Will there be sanitizer or toilet paper at the store this time?

 I miss seeing people and being around my family.

 

If worries like these are keeping you from performing and focusing on work or functioning at work, there are things you can do.

 

Disability Insurance

 Applying for STD or LTD benefits is recommended and encouraged if you think you’re unable to work.

Long-term disability (LTD) coverage is a benefit that is paid out to you if you become disabled from working. Utilizing these benefits is exactly what disability insurance is there for and what you’ve been paying into; don’t hesitate to apply if you need to.

Policies will almost always require that the individual be unable to continue working because of a diagnosed medical condition. The medical condition can be emotional, cognitive, or physical.

No one should suffer from psychological injuries caused by a pandemic. Insurance companies will need to step up and take care of those who have been impacted by COVID-19.

 

Speak with your Doctor

Your mental health is extremely important in this difficult time. Getting help for anxiety, depression or another mental health concern is not something to be ashamed of. Especially if it’s impacting you, your family, your work or ability to work, or your daily life.

Seeking proper medical treatment for issues that prevent you from working is crucial. Not only will it help your well being, but it also supports your disability claim to the insurer.

 

Denied Disability Claims

Unfortunately, denied claims are common.

The doctor that is treating you agrees that you shouldn’t be working (or returning to work), but once the insurance company reviews the file, they disagree and say you can work. All without having another doctor assess you or review your file.

Doesn’t make sense, does it? Well, you’re not alone in thinking that. The doctor that is treating you is in the best position to decide whether you can work or not.

Lack of “appropriate treatment” or “insufficient medical evidence” are common reasons for a claim denial. Insurers have even come back to say you don’t “meet the test for total disability”.

If you’re told by your treating doctor that you aren’t in a position to work or return to work, then you likely aren’t and there is a good chance you’re entitled to receive LTD benefits even if your claim has been denied.

 

Have Questions?

If you or someone you know has been denied or cut-off from disability benefits because the appropriate treatment cannot be continued for reasons related to COVID-19, or other causes, it’s important you reach out to us at Dye and Russell immediately.

 

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Skye OliverLong-Term Disability & COVID-19
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10 Tips to Enhance Your Driving

Even the most experienced drivers can pick up bad habits. This happens over time as we become more comfortable behind the wheel.

The problem with these bad habits is that they not only put you at risk while you’re on the road but other people that are driving around you and following the rules of the road.

There are things you can do to help get your driving back on track. Not only will these tips help keep you and others safe on the road, but they’ll serve as a reminder to share the road with other vehicles, cyclists and pedestrians.

 

  1. Back to basics

Some of the basic rules of the road are the easiest to forget when you’ve been driving for a while. For example, remaining in the left lane of the street you’re turning on to when you’re making a left turn at an intersection, always using your turn signal, or stopping completely at a stop sign. These are only a few of the bad habits that should be corrected; they’re instrumental in keeping the roads safe. Driving while you’re in a rush, tired or dealing with another distraction should be avoided as they can also lead to reckless driving.

 

  1. Check your mirrors

Just because you drive the same car every day doesn’t mean the mirrors can’t move slightly. Maybe someone moved your car or borrowed it to run to the store, if so, they likely adjusted the mirrors. You should check your side mirrors and rear-view mirror each time you get into the driver’s seat.

 

  1. Know how to use your high-beams  

Your high-beams are meant to be used to help you see on poorly lit roads at night or in extreme daytime weather. They should always be turned off when another car is approaching you because of how bright they are. The improper use of your high-beams can be distracting to other drivers who become blinded by your bright lights. If you encounter a driver who has failed to turn their high-beams off as you approach, it’s suggested you look to the right side of the road and follow the painted edge line.

 

  1. Left turns

Safely making a left-hand turn in an intersection isn’t just about staying in the left lane when you turn. When you’re waiting to make your turn safely, it’s important to keep your wheels pointed straight. If you should be hit from behind, your car would move forward as opposed to it rolling into oncoming traffic if your wheels pointed left.

 

  1. Be alert

It’s easy to fall into autopilot when you have years of driving experience under your belt. Remaining alert is an important and necessary step in safe driving. Checking your mirrors regularly, using your turn signal appropriately, and pay attention to the other cars around you. Too often people focus on the car immediately in front of them and don’t notice when they’re getting too close.

 

  1. Distance

This one happens all the time – tailgating. Leaving adequate space between your vehicle and the ones around you is essential for avoiding accidents. A great method for keeping a safe space away is by timing the distance. Pick a marker on the road and when the car in front of you passes it, time how long it takes for you to reach the same spot. A recommended time-distance between you and the car in front is 4 seconds.

 

  1. Drivers education

When was the last time you took a driving course? Not since you got your license, right? Overtime rules of the road can change and it’s important for you to keep up with them. If it’s been a while since you’ve been behind the wheel, you want to sharpen your driving skills or think a refresher course may be useful, don’t be afraid to connect with your local driving school.

 

  1. Know your car

Have you ever seen people back into a parking space with what seems like no effort? Well, knowing your car may have something to do with that. The better you know your car, the more comfortable you feel driving it. Knowing what features it has and using them to your advantage, like back up cameras or park assist abilities, can help make those hard to see spots easier.

 

  1. Using a roundabout

Roundabouts are something even experienced drivers have issues with. For some reason, they’re intimidating and can cause a lot of confusion for people. If you’re one of these people, the Ontario Ministry of Transportation has released a guide to help you understand how to properly use roundabouts.

 

  1. Check your eyes

Having your eyes regularly checked by an optometrist ensures your eyesight is at the level it needs to be at to safely operate a vehicle.  The aging population may have noticed a decline in their sight, regular check-ups can help catch problems early and address them before they get worse.

 

You can be a safe driver, but accidents can happen. If you or someone you know has been involved in an accident your road to recovery is important to us. Fast dial #1000 free from your cell and our experienced team at Dye and Russell will get you the support you need.

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Can You Claim For Emotional Distress?

Falling and getting a concussion, breaking a bone or suffering from a serious laceration as a result of another’s negligence are common injuries people think of when they’re talking about personal injury law. Injury claims such as these have evidential aspects that are easier to prove. External injuries are visible and possible internal injuries can be proven with X-rays or other medical scans. Claims for mental pain and suffering and emotional distress aren’t as easily proven but are still genuine to the individual suffering.

 

What is Emotional Distress?

Emotional distress is defined by Merriam-Webster as “a highly unpleasant emotional reaction (as anguish, humiliation, or fury) which results from another’s conduct and for which damages may be sought”.

Damages for emotional distress may be recovered whether there was intentional or negligent behaviour. In cases where negligent actions resulted in emotional distress, the plaintiff is generally required to have also suffered from a physical injury.

Signs & Symptoms
Too much of anything can affect a person. If you eat too much cake, you will end up with a stomach ache. Listening to upbeat, energetic music repeatedly can cause you to feel certain emotions such as happiness or excitement. Similarly, too much stress can lead to both emotional and physical symptoms. Knowing these signs and being able to identify them can help you reduce and learn to manage them.

Healthline outlines some of the emotional signs to pay attention to.

  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Irritability & mood swings
  • Problems concentrating or remembering things
  • Compulsive behaviour

 

How Can It Be Proven?

The burden of proof falls on the victim when it comes to emotional distress lawsuits. Since emotional distress is mainly psychological, it becomes even more difficult to prove in court. Unlike a broken arm where an X-Ray can allow for a visual of the injury, there is no physical evidence to prove an injury has even occurred when it comes to mental health.

Andrew Lu describes some of the ways you might be able to prove your emotional distress claim.

  • Intensity

The more intense one’s mental suffering, the more likely it can be to prove. However, cases claiming negligence against another party often require some kind of physical injury to be present.

  • Duration

Proving the pain is consistent, reoccurring and stays with you for a significant period, like PTSD.

  • Related bodily harm

Proving a related injury, like migraines or ulcers, can help point to signs of distress.

  • Underlying cause

An extreme situation that brought on emotional distress (e.g. surviving a bombing) is more likely to show a court emotional distress was brought on by a traumatic incident. As opposed to a car accident where no one suffered any injuries.

  • Doctors note

This will help support your claim and should be incorporated for this exact purpose.

 

How to Manage Stress

 

Luckily, there are things you can do to help manage and even reduce your stress. Identifying the source of your stress is the starting point for addressing your emotional symptoms.

As explained by the American Institute of Stress, there are several ways to manage stress. It’s important to find techniques that are right for you; nothing is universal when it comes to stress management. Some may find taking a hot yoga class to be relaxing while another could find it quite boring and become irritated.

  • Participating in physical activity; running, playing sports, dance etc.
  • Calming activities; meditating, yoga etc.
  • Listening to music, reading, writing in a journal/diary etc.
  • Getting a massage or attending a therapy session (private or group)

Claiming emotional distress is a complicated and overwhelming process. Involving an experienced personal injury lawyer, like Dye and Russell, to help guide you through your case is the easy part, and the first step in your road to recovery.

 

If you or someone you know is suffering from emotional stress due to the negligence of another, a workplace incident or traumatic event, contact the experienced team at Dye and Russell today.

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Skye OliverCan You Claim For Emotional Distress?
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11 Ways to Manage Your Chronic Pain

If there’s one thing that makes day to day activities or tasks more difficult, it’s chronic pain. That constant throbbing in your neck, sharp pains in your back or aching in your knees. So many people spend countless hours trying to relieve their pain or symptoms with no satisfaction. Common ailments linked to chronic pain can include injuries received in a motor vehicle accident, slip, trip or fall or more severely as a result of a catastrophic or traumatic accident.

To give you a hand this holiday season and to help bring some relief to your suffering, we’re sharing WebMD’s list of 11 tips for living with chronic pain. Some of these you might be more familiar with, some may be new, but everything is worth a try once!

 

  1. Relax using deep breathing or meditation practices

When we’re stressed, our muscles can become tense and tight. Practicing deep breathing or forms of meditation can reduce these symptoms and help you relax. Having a gentle massage or taking time to focus on clearing your mind are other ways to combat tension.

  1. De-stress

Did you know that feelings of depression, anxiety, and anger can increase the intensity of chronic pain? Learning to manage these types of emotions has been said to provide some relief. There are several ways that you can de-stress. For example, listening to calming music can uplift your mood or writing out your emotions in a journal.

  1. Exercise

This is a popular way to deal with injuries. When you exercise your body naturally release endorphins which help improve your mood. Exercise in general is good for your health, it keeps your blood pressure regular, cholesterol levels normal and decreases risks for heart diseases. It also strengthens your muscles which, when strong, limit the chance of reinjuring yourself and reduces chronic pain symptoms.

  1. Limit alcohol intake

When you deal with chronic pain, getting a proper restful night’s sleep is next to impossible. Having a drink to take the edge off may seem like a good idea. However, unlike popular belief, alcohol can make sleep problems worse. Limiting how much you drink alcohol can help improve your quality of sleep.

  1. Connect with others

It’s natural to associate with people who have similar traits to you or like interests. Going to group meetings with others who’ve been in serious motor vehicle accidents or are now suffering from side effects of others negligence keep you from feeling alone. Connecting with people who are also suffering from the same or similar chronic injury or disease can evoke the same feelings of belonging. Others may also offer symptom relief methods or practices that you may not have tried.

  1. Don’t smoke

Reduced circulation levels are a known side effect of smoking. This can intensify any circulation conditions and further increase the risk of heart disease and cancer.

  1. Track pain levels

Keeping your doctor informed about how you are feeling helps them provide the proper care. Between visits, track how you are feeling in a journal. Using a scale of 1 – 10 and listing out activities or things done that day can help pinpoint what triggers higher pain levels. Sharing this with your doctor can help in the management of chronic pain. This can also be useful if you’ve suffered an injury at work, such as a slip and fall, and need detailed documentation for medical appointments.

  1. Give Biofeedback therapy a try

This method of therapy is new to us. Biofeedback claims to allow you to control various body functions. Using sensors, you can “hear” or “see” different body functions. It’s displayed on monitors as squiggly lines that you eventually learn to control these functions using your biological system.

  1. Get a massage

Quite possibly the most widely used form of stress and chronic pain relief. Massages alleviate the tension in your muscles and allow for complete relaxation. Those who suffer from back and or neck pain as a result of a slip and fall or motor vehicle accident find this method of relief a fantastic way to manage their symptoms.

  1. Eat a well-balanced diet

Believe it or not, what you eat plays a part in how you feel. Eating a well-balanced diet keeps your digestive system running well, reduces risk of heart disease and keeps your weight under control.

  1. Get distracted!

Get out and get your mind off things. Sitting around and thinking about your bad knee, cursing the sidewalk for causing you to slip and fall doesn’t make things better, in fact it does the opposite. Doing something you enjoy will take the focus off your pain and instead keep you preoccupied with the activity at hand.

 

If you experience chronic pain due to a motor vehicle accident, slip, trip or fall or other traumatic accident and are being treated unfairly, you might need legal assistance. Call #1000 on your cell phone for free. We will offer you a free claim assessment.

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Skye Oliver11 Ways to Manage Your Chronic Pain
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What You Should Consider When Disputing an Insurance Claim

 

Everyone knows that dealing with the big insurance companies can give you a headache and have you running around in circles with no answers. Policies can be so complex that sadly, insurance companies have often used their inside knowledge to take advantage of insureds through policy loopholes. This can leave insureds at a standstill in regards to their insurance claims and even result in a claim being denied.

Insurance is one of those things that you love to hate but have it anyways. It gives you and your family the protection they will need if something should happen to them or yourself. However, even if you are paying your bill on time each month and never miss a payment, insurance companies will look to find the cheapest way to pay out your claim to save money for themselves, if they pay out at all. This can be the last thing you want to deal with when you’re faced with a loss.

Here are four steps to consider when resolving a dispute with an insurance company.

Gather information

  • Insurance policies aren’t always easily understood by the average person. Ask your agent, broker or insurance representative for clarification about your concern/issue. The rights and responsibilities of all parties are written within the policy (aka contract), however miscommunications can occur.
  • If you have general questions you can contact the IBC Consumer Information Centre (CIC). They can assist with basic questions about policy wording, coverage or how to proceed with a complaint

Get in touch with the insurance companies Complaint Liaison Officer or Ombudsperson

  • Licensed insurers have a complaint resolution process, and someone assigned to enforce this process. This role is regulated by the provincial regulator.
  • If you plan on making a complaint through this channel, be sure to state your complaint clearly, including the expected resolution. Be sure to have all your documentation readily available and take note of all persons you spoke with regarding the complaint as well as what was spoken about. Finally, give the Complaint Liaison Officer or Ombudsperson sufficient time to investigate & respond to your complaint.

Reach out to the GIO (General Insurance OmbudsService)

  • If you’ve gone through your insurers complaint processes and aren’t satisfied you can request a Final Position Letter and contact the GIO. The GIO is an impartial consumer dispute resolution system. It is in place to help you and the insurer resolve disputes about claim-related matters.

Take it to the Federal or Provincial level

  • If your dispute cannot be solved by the GIO, or if the insurance company isn’t a member of the GIO, you can take it a step further by contacting a Financial Consumer Agency of Canada.

Dye & Russell should be your first call if you’re having issues claiming insurance compensation. We have the experience and knowledge of the industry that keep us from being pushed around by policymakers. Let us handle the big insurance companies and take the stress away from you to get you what you deserve.

If you’ve experienced a claim denial or want to dispute a claim, and need legal assistance, call #1000 on your cell phone for free. We will offer you a free claim assessment.

 

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Trick or Treat: Tips for Staying Safe on Halloween Night

The end of October is an exciting time for children and adults alike; Halloween is finally here. Some people wait for this day all year long, spending hours crafting the perfect costume. It’s a time that brings out creativity, great costumes, scary stories and who can forget the copious amounts of candy!

While trick or treating on Halloween night is fun for all ages, it’s also a time for heightened awareness of your surroundings. Here are our tips on keeping safe on the scariest night of the year.

  1. Avoid masks

Wearing something that covers the face reduces how well the person wearing the mask can see. It’s important that visibility isn’t compromised; cars, bikes and other hazards are around that may cause an injury if they aren’t seen properly.

  1. Wear light coloured clothing/costumes

Dark clothes such as black, brown or navy are hard to see at night. Staying in costumes or clothing that is lighter in colour makes you more visible to others.

  1. Make a plan with kids going without parents/adults

If your children are old enough to go out on their own, decide on a plan before they head out. Map out a route they must take/stay on, have them bring a cell phone and flashlight and remind them to avoid homes that are poorly lit and to never go into a stranger’s home.

  1. Check candy

Having a parent or guardian look through any goodies collected is very important. Sometimes candy or chocolates may have partially opened wrappers. This doesn’t always indicate the item has been tampered with, but it’s safest to throw it away anyways.

  1. Stay on the sidewalk

Trick or treating happens at night, when it’s dark and generally lacks good lighting. Darting out on the road or running back and forth across the street is unsafe and can potentially lead to serious injuries. Keeping on the sidewalk means not just pedestrians stay safe, but those that are out driving as well.

  1. Bring a flashlight & cell phone

In the event of any emergency it’s a good idea to have a flashlight and cell phone on hand. If something is dropped, a flashlight will make it easier to see. Flashlights also make it easier for other people to see you. A cell phone comes in handy if an emergency phone call needs to be made or to keep track of an older child who is trick or treating on their own.

  1. Remove walkway clutter or potential hazards

The excitement that comes along with free candy can cause for lack of awareness of the surrounding area. Keep kids and adults safe and remove any tripping hazards from the sidewalk or porch area of your home. Keeping this area well lit will also help eliminate potential dangers.

  1. Share the streets

Not exceeding the speed limit, staying alert and avoiding distractions will help you and others stay safe and enjoy the night. All motorists should exercise additional caution when driving through neighbourhoods and school zones. Pedestrians should keep in mind that costumes and lack of light make for poor driving conditions; don’t assume drivers can see you. Adding something reflective to your costume is a helpful way to remain seen.

If you have been injured, and need legal assistance, call #1000 on your cell phone for free. We will offer you a free claim assessment.

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Skye OliverTrick or Treat: Tips for Staying Safe on Halloween Night
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