Why some personal injury cases get turned down.
April 12, 2016, Kitchener, Ontario
Posted by: Robert Deutschmann, Personal Injury Lawyer
It happens sometimes. A person will come in for their free consultation on their personal injury case and I cannot accept the case.
This is one of the many reasons I offer a free consultation. I can listen to your case, we can talk about it together, and then we can decide whether we are a good fit for my practice (this is indeed a personal injury case), and how we can move forward. It’s my job to tell you the truth about your case. It’s your job to tell me truth. It isn’t in either of our best interests to move forward with lengthy, difficult negotiations and court or tribunal hearings if, from the beginning, we know that the case is not one that should have moved forward.
The legislative process around personal injury law in Ontario is very well defined as is the basis for moving forward with a denied claim through the appeal process. Many people don’t understand that and when I explain the rules of the process most people understand. Some get angry though because what they hear is that their case isn’t important to me, or that it isn’t worth the money to me. This is not generally the case.
I do have a business that I have to run, so I do have to make decisions around what cases I accept. I work on a contingency basis which means that I don’t get paid until you do. If I know that the case has little to no chance of winning that is a reason not to accept it.
Whenever I meet with a new client I evaluate the case. I need to determine whether your case has merit. Has your case been denied or misdealt with? Did the insurance company ‘break the rules’? Some cases it is clear cut. The insurance company has, in others they have not. In some we get into a grey area. We also have to determine what your injuries are, and whether they fall into the accepted range of injuries that are compensable.
The next thing I do is determine whether the claim is a viable one. I know roughly how much money I have invest to properly represent you. I need to gather evidence, investigate and represent you at meetings and hearings. I may need to hire medical or other experts to prove your case. The dollar amounts can add up very quickly. I need to be assured in my mind that the overhead I have incurred when I make in your case will be met once the case is settled.
I also need to make sure that you and I are a good match. If I feel that you don’t trust me, or if I feel you aren’t being truthful with me then we have an issue from the start. I learned a long time ago that the process of representing someone in a personal injury case can go on for years. Getting along with each other is paramount. The attorney-client relationship is based on mutual trust and respect. The chance of success decreases if the relationship is a rocky one.
The first meeting is always crucial. You should be comfortable that the person you hire is competent and has your interests up front. You should understand what is going to happen and why. If you don’t think your expectations will be met, or if your case is turned down by me then I will always encourage you to get a second opinion on your case.
|Posted under Personal Injury, Slip and Fall Injury, Spinal Cord Injury
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About Deutschmann Law
Deutschmann Law serves South-Western Ontario with offices in Kitchener-Waterloo, Cambridge, Woodstock, Brantford, Stratford and Ayr. The law practice of Robert Deutschmann focuses almost exclusively in personal injury and disability insurance matters. For more information, please visit www.deutschmannlaw.com or call us toll-free at 1-866-414-4878.
The opinions expressed here, while intended to provide useful information, should not be interpreted as legal recommendations or advice.