What you can expect in a free consultation with a lawyer for your personal injury claim

If you have suffered injuries in a motor vehicle accident for which you were not at fault, you can seek compensation from the at-fault driver and, more specifically, from his/her insurer. You will likely be looking for a lawyer to guide you through the complexities of legal proceedings and advocate for your interests.

A personal injury case in the province of Ontario begins with the initial consultation phase. At the initial consultation, the insured person meets with a lawyer to evaluate the merits of their claim and to evaluate the services that the lawyer has to offer. If the insured person chooses to hire a lawyer, the lawyer will handle the personal injury claim with input from the insured person.

In consultation with our firm, topics that we will discuss include your injuries, preexisting health, employment, school, social activities, hobbies, volunteering, attendant-care needs, housekeeping tasks, family dynamics, out-of-pocket expenses, possible witnesses and the police report as well as whether you are able to provide proof of your injuries, income loss and/or out-of-pocket expenses.

Although you may want to know how much money you will receive from a lawsuit, it is too early at the consultation to evaluate your case’s worth, which is affected by factors such as your progress in recovery, which is not completely known at this stage and is constantly evolving.

If you retain me as your lawyer, you should then provide me with the following information and/or documents:

  • A copy of your I.D. (Ontario driver’s license or Canadian passport);
  • your phone number (including alternative phone numbers), address and email address;
  • a copy of your O.H.I.P. and S.I.N. card number;
  • a copy of the police report or self-collision report;
  • the at-fault driver’s name, address, driver’s license, auto insurance company and policy number, as well as plate number, model and year of vehicle;
  • the date, time and location of the accident;
  • a detailed description of the accident;
  • pictures of the damage to the vehicles involved;
  • the names, addresses and telephone numbers of witnesses;
  • a list of your injuries, both emotional and physical;
  • a list of any preexisting injuries;
  • information regarding the hospital attended;
  • your family doctor or specialist information;
  • your employment or school information, including the details if you have not returned to school or work;
  • any extended health plan information; and
  • the names of all attending healthcare professionals

Although we may be a good firm, you also play a role in whether or not your claim is successful. If you do not get any medical or rehabilitative treatment, your case will be worth nothing. This is because there will not be independent evidence to prove your claim. There must be records that show treatment. Regularly visit your family doctor and get any treatment recommended by the family doctor, such as, but not limited to, X-rays, M.R.I.s, physiotherapy, chiropractic treatment, massage, counselling, etc.

Be certain to keep all receipts for expenses related to your injuries and keep a journal where you make regular entries on any pain you experience associated with your injuries from the motor vehicle accident.