How Do I Know If I Need a Personal Injury Lawyer?

After experiencing a traumatic brain injury (TBI) or other serious injury, focusing on your recovery and getting the appropriate medical attention is important. If the injury occurred in a motor vehicle accident, at work or home, contacting an experienced personal injury lawyer can help you understand your legal rights. A lawyer can also help explain your options if your injuries were the result of negligence or malpractice.

There are many reasons why contacting a personal injury lawyer is in your best interest. Here are our top four:

 

1.    A personal injury lawyer will help answer your questions.

Anyone that has been seriously injured or had a loved one struggle with a major injury undoubtedly has questions. Personal injury lawyers with experience handling serious injury cases can help answer your important questions, such as “What happened?” and  “Do we have a case?”.

A personal injury lawyer will conduct a factual investigation through interviews, review of records, and through the experience of professional investigators/consultants to gain information leading up to and at the time of your injury.

The insurance companies representing any possible defendants will be conducting the same type of investigations. The experts at Dye and Russell have experience working with insurance companies and know how to get you the settlement you deserve.

 

2.    A personal injury lawyer will help you understand why an injury may have occurred.

Individuals that have experienced a traumatic brain injury (TBI), as well as their families, may not recognize that other individuals or entities may have contributed to their injury.

A lawyer will be able to assist in identifying all the individuals or entities that may have been a contributing factor to your injury. They will also ensure that those responsible are held accountable to the full extent of the law.

 

3.    A personal injury lawyer will help you understand your rights so you can make informed decisions.

Many serious injuries, such as a severe traumatic brain injury (TBI), are often permanent and require a considerable number of medical treatments and/or ongoing care.

Speaking with a personal injury lawyer as soon as possible, like the ones at Dye and Russell, will help preserve your right to civil action. Our experienced lawyers will work with you to understand your options and help you make an informed decision about moving forward with your case.

 

4.    A personal injury lawyer will help ensure you are fully compensated.

We understand how injuries impact you and your family in the present and how you will be impacted in the future.

The lawyers at Dye and Russell will work to ensure you and your family receive the maximum settlement that you are entitled to for current and future medical expenses. A personal injury lawyer will also seek compensation for current and future pain and suffering, both physical and mental, as well as any loss of wages.

 

Consulting an experienced personal injury lawyer in the wake of an accident is in your best interest. A lawyer will answer your questions and help you understand your rights or why an injury may have occurred. They are there to make sure you receive the maximum settlement you deserve so you can make a full recovery.

Contact the team at Dye and Russell today by calling 1-877-883-6171 or fast dial #1000 from your cell phone.

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Skye OliverHow Do I Know If I Need a Personal Injury Lawyer?
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Tips & Tricks: Bike Safety Basics

Cycling is a great way to get around—it gets you from point A to point B all while keeping you fit and helping the environment. Some studies have even shown that it is the safest mode of transportation, particularly for young adults. Even so, around 7,500 cyclists suffer severe injuries every year in Canada, while 70, 000 are treated in emergency rooms for injuries related to cycling, according to the CBC.

Over half of the Toronto population cycles, that’s 54% of Torontonians. Luckily, the Toronto Cycling Network Plan is working on making Toronto a more bike-friendly city. Hopefully, Canadian cities will one day be as welcoming to cyclists as European cities, where cyclist injury and death rates are substantially lower. As this eco-friendly method of transportation becomes more popular, cyclists and drivers will become more aware of their places on the roads and fewer accidents will occur.

Until then, there are many things cyclists can be aware of to ensure their safety on the roads. Here are some bike safety tips and tricks based on facts from the CBC and Ontario’s Ministry of Transportation:

Where you can and cannot ride

  • Cyclists must stay as close to the right side of the road as possible, especially if you’re slower than other traffic.
  • Cyclists cannot ride on controlled-access highways, such as Ontario’s 400-series highways
  • Cyclists are only allowed to walk their bikes through pedestrian crossovers.

Where and when it’s best to ride

If cyclists aren’t planning to ride to and from work, they should avoid riding during the afternoon rush hour—17% of cyclist deaths and 23% of cyclist injuries occur during this time.

The worst time for a cyclist to ride is at night—30% of cyclist deaths occur at this time. Avoiding busy cities and intersections is ideal for a cyclist’s safety—despite traffic control signs, cyclists are more likely to be injured in an area with these features. Cyclists should also avoid rural areas where the speed limits are 80km/h or more—44% of cyclist deaths happen on these roads.

Wearing a helmet

It is illegal for any cyclist under the age of 18 to ride without a helmet.

For any cyclist under the age of 16, a parent or guardian must ensure that they are not riding without a helmet. Adults are not required to wear a helmet, although it is strongly recommended, as it lowers a cyclist’s chance of injury by 90%.

Additional cycling laws 

The following are changes made regarding cycling law after the passing of Bill 31- Transportation Statute Law Amendment Act , effective September 1, 2015: 

  • All drivers of motor vehicles are required to maintain a minimum distance of one metre, where practical, when passing cyclists on highways;
  • Persons who improperly open or leave opened the doors of motor vehicles on highways face increased penalties (commonly known as “dooring”).
  • The fine for non-compliance with bicycle light, reflector and reflective requirements will increase; and
  • Cyclists are permitted to use lamps that produce intermittent flashes of red light.

 

For more information on Ontario bike laws, visit the Ontario Ministry of Transportation website. If you know of a cyclist who has been in an accident, have them contact us at our Ajax (905-427-2000) or Barrie offices (705-726-2146) for their free consultation.

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Common Questions Personal Injury Lawyers Get

The field of personal injury law can be unclear and often leave people feeling confused and overwhelmed. There is emotional and financial stress that coincides with an injury and navigating the recovery process, both legally and health wise, can be daunting.

At Dye & Russell it’s our mission to help guide you and your family through the entire process, protecting your rights and fighting to make sure you receive what you’re entitled to. Big insurance companies don’t have your best interests at the forefront and aren’t going to fight to get what you deserve; they want to pay out as little as possible.

As personal injury lawyers, it’s important that our clients feel empowered and knowledgeable about their case; after all it’s their lives that are impacted. To alleviate some of the unknown, here are some of the common questions asked of our lawyers at Dye & Russell.

  1. Why do I need a personal injury lawyer?

Simply put, personal injury law is one of, if not the most, complex areas of law. It requires going after compensation from large insurance companies, all while navigating the elusive, ever changing laws and regulations. Having been in the industry for over 20 years, our personal injury lawyers have the experience and expertise to protect your rights and get you on the right path to a complete recovery.

 

  1. How soon after and accident or injury can I contact a personal injury lawyer?

If you or someone you know has been involved in an accident, it’s important that you contact a personal injury lawyer as soon as possible. There are certain cases that require you to put the defendant on notice within a matter of days if you will be suing. If this doesn’t occur, the defendant can argue the claim is out of time & that you weren’t really injured, potentially barring your claim. Dye & Russell aims to protect your rights and provide you access to the treatment needed in the beginning stages of your injury. Acting quickly to collect and preserve necessary evidence to present your case makes a difference in receiving what’s fair.

 

  1. How do I pay for the legal services?

One of the common reason’s individuals don’t seek out a personal injury lawyer is the fear of what it will cost. Often their injury has prevented them from working so the thought of another expense is off-putting. At Dye & Russell we offer a free claim evaluation of your case, no obligation. When you do decide to have us represent you, you don’t pay until we’ve settled or won your case. We ensure you receive the proper funding for necessary treatment and do whatever it takes to properly assess and present your claim. Little things like this can help relieve some of the stress and financial burden that is tied to a personal injury case.

 

  1. How long does it take to settle my claim?

The amount of time it takes to settle a personal injury claim can change based on the complexity of the case. It isn’t uncommon for cases to range from 2-3 years before being resolved; although some are resolved much quicker. When you contact Dye & Russell we’ll happily explain the claim and litigation process, in addition to providing you with an estimate on how long it will take to resolve the claim.

 

If you feel you have been wrongfully injured in an accident due to the negligence of another or have had your claim denied, contact Dye & Russell.

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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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How self-care can help injury recovery

Self-care—it’s one of those buzz words that’s been floating around, entering the everyday and medical world. But what does it really mean?

The fact that self-care is very personal and situational can make it hard to define, but a general definition is that self-care is “any necessary human regulatory function which is under individual control, deliberate and self-initiated.”

Practicing self-care can be a valuable practice that can be catered to anyone’s recovery journey. While your individual injury and situation can dictate what you are capable of doing for yourself (and what will work for you), incorporating self-care into your life can be a key skill to aid in your recovery and adjusting to your new life post-injury. It can help you put yourself in charge of your recovery.

Physical Self-care

After an injury it is likely that your physical needs will change. Whether that’s how long you need to sleep for every night or your eating habits, talking to your doctor about the physical aspects of your life that you will need to adjust after your injury is key to equipping yourself with the knowledge required to make the life adjustments you need.

Making sure you are getting the appropriate amount of sleep can ensure that your body can get the rest it needs to help itself repair. Eating nutritious food that fuels your body is important to giving yourself what you need during and after recovery. Also doing activities within your abilities to energize your body can help you feel better, like stretching, swimming, running, doing yoga, etc.

Mental Self-care

An injury can bring a lot of stress into your life. While stress can be helpful by giving you the ability to deal with challenges and threats you face, lots of it over time can take a toll on you. What helps people destress is a very personal thing. If you already know things that help you destress make time for them in your life. But, if you don’t know what can help you destress, or if you are no longer able to do what used to help you relax before your injury try some new ways and see what works. Taking a long bath, starting a meditation practice, and/or finding a new hobby are all things that could help.

Emotional Self-care

Self-care can also help you cope with the emotional toll an injury can take on your life. Spending time to dedicate to your emotional health, like seeing a counselor, journaling, taking time to talk and spend time with people you love and/or writing down gratitude lists can help

you be with the range of emotional challenges an injury can force you to experience. Among them learning to adjust to your life post-injury can be difficult. Trying to write a new mission statement for your life going forward is a great way to frame your new perspective of success and fulfillment.

Self-care after an injury makes you an empowered member of your circle of care—the team that is there to help you on your recovery journey. Another important member of your circle of care is a personal injury lawyer that can secure the legal, financial and personal support necessary following an accident. That’s where Dye and Russell can be there for you following your accident.

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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Getting back to green: economic recovery after injury

Personal injury can seriously impair your personal finances. Injuries can upend all areas of life, including your career and finances. While much focus is given to physical recovery, financial recovery is crucial as well.

Your financial situation can tie into your mental and emotional recovery and, in turn, your physical recovery. Here are some tips for getting back to green after a personal injury:

  1. Consider a new line of work

An injury may make you unable to return to your past line of work (if it’s too unsafe or demanding). This can be very frustrating, especially if you were very passionate about your previous line of work or if you have been very successful in your career. However, there are other career possibilities ahead that may be better suited to you post-injury.

You may even find a new career that you love even more. If you’re able to work in any capacity it can do more than bring you increased financial stability and momentum. Working can also give you a new sense of identity, personal achievement, social contacts, skills development and a sense of structure—all of which can help with your mental health and in turn your physical health.

  1. Ask for help

If you have family or friends that would be able to help you financially consider asking them for help. You might be surprised by their willingness to help, especially if they have seen the effects of a personal injury on your life.

  1. Budget wisely

Recovering from injury can tighten up your finances. Budgeting is vital and can reduce risk of debt or insolvency. If this task seems monumental, ask for help from a family member or friend. Find unnecessary expenses, that you made prior to injury, and eliminate these.

Budgeting creates a solid financial basis for later success. It’s important, when budgeting, to assess your needs and wants differently and to be ruthless and honest with yourself and your finances.

  1. Get legal help

If you’ve been injured, damages may be owed to you. It’s crucial to ask for legal help. A personal injury lawyer can help you to navigate the best course of action. Further to this, they will be able to get you more money than an independent inquiry. These extra funds can be critical for seeing you through recovery.

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. Find out what you’re owed and start your journey back to green.

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Brain injury and memory

Strategies to improve memory after a brain injury

Brain injuries can radically impact your quality of life. One of the areas that can be most affected by a traumatic brain injury is memory. Conversely, memory is a critical function for daily life.

“Memory is your brain taking in, keeping, recalling and using information,” says BrainLine. “A brain injury can affect any of these areas of memory. A brain injury can also make it hard to learn and remember things.”

If your memory has been damaged as a result of a brain injury, or a brain injury has exacerbated existing memory problems, how do you recover what was lost?

Here are three steps to strengthen your memory after a traumatic brain injury.

1. Write it all down

For some, this means keeping a journal or calendar and writing down detailed descriptions to help them throughout the day. For others, this is simply writing cues or prompts to help them remember tasks or objectives. It is helpful, however, to have all of your prompts concentrated in one place to guard against loss.

Other ways to use writing to help you throughout the day are creating checklists, labelling items in shared spaces, making ‘cheat sheets’ for your wallet or cue cards for where items are located.

2. Make smart purchases

If you take medication, a pill organizer can be hugely helpful for those with memory problems. Purchasing appliances that shut off automatically can be helpful to ensuring home safety. If you’re opening a bank account, specify automatic bill payment or authorize a protective payee on your behalf.

3. Use PQRST

PQRST is a technique to help attain and retain information. First, preview the material, casually reading it over to understand what it is about. Second, question it by making a list of queries that you need answered to fully grasp the subject. Third, read! Read the material over again carefully, referring back to the questions list you generated. Fourth, state it in your own words. This could be out loud or on paper. Would you be able to

teach someone this material? Fifth, and finally, test yourself or ask someone else to test you. Repeat as necessary until you are confident you have fully retained the information.

Fast dial #1000 free from your cell and we’ll get you the support you need.

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For brain injury victim family members

6 tips to help ease your way through recovery

Brain injuries don’t just affect those who are injured, they can affect entire families. If a family member of yours has experienced a brain injury chances are it might have placed emotional, social or financial challenges in your path. Every family’s experience is unique but all can experience the same types of changes.

It can be helpful to take some guidance from experts who understand your situation. Thankfully the Ontario Brain Injury Association has created a number of recommendations for family members of those experiencing brain injury. Some of these six tips might work for you:

1. Share responsibility

If you are becoming the main caregiver for the injured person the massive life change that your loved one’s injury can bring to your life can bring a lot of stress as well as personal strain. Know that you are not alone. If your injured loved one is capable of helping you in any way, allow them to help around the home.

While it can be challenging living with someone who has sustained a brain injury, there are support networks around you to help, whether that’s friends, family, support groups, programs or organizations.

2. Ask the nurses

Knowledge is power. While caring for someone who is recovering from a brain injury it’s a good idea to learn as much as you can about their condition. Your loved one might have medical problems specific to their injury. You’ll want to learn all you can about the problems your loved one will be facing and how to properly manage them. Nurses who are caring for your loved one can be a great resource to ask questions that you may not have been able to get in when talking to specialists or doctors and walk you through specifics so you are more prepared for providing care on your own.

3. Consider getting a neurophysical evaluation

A neurophysical evaluation can give you a better understanding of your loved one’s injury, including how their abilities will be affected by the injury. Knowing this can help you in a number of ways. Because a brain injury can have significant affects on your loved one’s cognition and behaviour, this can cause significant changes in their life going forward. It’s important to understand what your loved one is facing. Secondly, knowing what these challenges are can help you moving forward in being able to care for them and look out for their wellbeing. Knowing what specific challenges they face, and what they are capable of doing, can help you predict issues in upcoming situations as well as know what you can expect of them.

4. Join an organization

There are many organizations and groups available to offer you support and resources, like brain injury associations. The information and community they provide can help you to improve your loved one’s quality of life on the recovery journey ahead.

5. Push for what you need

It’s important to be a strong advocate for your loved one. You have the expertise in what they were like before their injury, as well as the knowledge you gain from daily interaction with them. Ask questions, learn about their rights, and be firm when it comes to having their needs met.

6. Consult a lawyer

Talking to an attorney should be an urgent priority. Make sure to talk to a lawyer experienced in representing brain injury victims, especially before signing any paperwork.

An experienced lawyer is valuable to brain injury victims for a few reasons. They can help guide you through your options after the injury and help you find valuable resources for yourself and your loved one. The help of a personal injury lawyer can remove a lot of the stress that comes when a loved one suffers a brain injury.

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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6 tips for adjusting to life after a brain injury

Most victims of brain injury and members of their family face a gamut of new and unfamiliar challenges on the road to recovery. Knowing how to navigate life and how to deal with the challenges recovery presents can be unbelievingly challenging. To help victims of brain injury Brainline developed a guide for adjusting to life after brain injury.

1. Redefine success

When your life changes after a brain injury it is likely your definition of success will also need to change. Comparing yourself and your progress to how you performed before your injury can be very limiting. Focusing on what you can do and how you can improve can help you change your definition of success. Explore ways you can be successful and set standards for yourself. No matter what state you are in you can improve yourself, enjoy relationships and live a meaningful life.

2. Ask for help

Asking for help can he a surprisingly difficult task. The fear of seeming like a burden or being turned away often stifles us from trying to get the help we need. But everybody needs help at some point or another. Don’t let a situation become a crisis before asking for help, and make sure to return a favour and thank those who have helped you.

3. Be kind to yourself

Immediately after a brain injury you begin your road to recovery. Taking time to heal and respecting the fact that your body needs time to mend itself mentally, physically and emotionally is very important. Being hard on yourself right now will only make things more difficult on you and those around you. Instead try to be kind and compassionate to yourself taking into consideration where you are in your recovery journey.

4. Set manageable goals

It’s easy to become overwhelmed by the hurdles ahead of you in your recovery. To manage this, break down the large goals in your recovery into small reasonable steps—ones you can do day-to-day to accomplish those bigger goals. Focusing on what you can do today and tomorrow can make the prospects of achieving big goals much less daunting. Even beyond recovery, breaking down your life goals in the same way can make them more manageable to achieve.

5. Create a support system

Social interaction is extremely important for recovery. After a brain injury receiving support and understanding is extremely comforting and helps stave off feelings of loneliness. Reconnecting with friends who have become distant after your brain injury, helping those in your circle of friends and family, as always showing care is important to maintain those relationships. If you don’t feel like those around you are able to understand what you are going through perhaps consider joining a support group to meet people who have similar experiences.

6. Practice patience

Patience is an essential skill to have while recovering from a brain injury. You will likely need to be persistent over time to reach recovery, but it can be difficult to keep your cool when faced with a difficult journey to get there. When you feel yourself losing your cool or becoming frustrated find a way to take a step back and relax yourself, whether that’s taking a deep breath or repeating an affirmation. Find what works for you.

Navigating the road to recovery after a brain injury can be difficult. We help brain injury victims during recovery as a part of the Circle of Care.

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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