• FAIR – supporting auto accident victims through advocacy and education
  • FAIR – supporting auto accident victims through advocacy and education
  • FAIR – supporting auto accident victims through advocacy and education
  • FAIR – supporting auto accident victims through advocacy and education

Latest News Articles

FAIR does not accept responsibility for comments, opinions, statistical information etc. associated with the links listed below. Any opinions, points of view, etc. are not necessarily shared by FAIR.

For a complete list of recent articles, please go to our 'Media Articles' page under 'In the News'.
We are updating our site and we appreciate your patience.

April 18, 2019

ODSP Protest March and Rally – more info to come!

  • Wednesday, May 15, 2019 at 10:30 AM – 2:30 PM EDT
     
The protest march begins at Yonge St and Bloor St at 10:30 am. We are protesting that ODSP and OW benefits are to low and need to be raised substantially, basically the Basic Needs and Rent portions need to be almost doubled at least. We will proceed down Yonge St to Dundas St and go west to University Ave and up to Queen’s Park.
The rally at Queen’s park to begin at 12:00 noon and go until 2:00pm. Please make placards, banners and signs. No profanity please! And don’t forget to bring a lunch.
Looking forward to seeing everyone there, bring your friends, your relatives and neighbors.
Sincerely, Isabella Gamk  
____________________________________________________________
A proposed law tucked into last week’s Ontario budget has alarmed lawyers, who describe the government’s planned legislation as a potentially unconstitutional attempt to insulate the province from lawsuits. 
 
_______________________________________________________________

Crash Support Network

Crash Support Network is based on relationship-building & puts the needs of survivors first by creating a helpful resource. Read more about our website launch in my latest blog
 
____________________________________________________________

SRL-Lawyer Dialogue: Are SRLs crazy or just fed up?

This blog is the first in a series in which lawyers (and other justice professionals) ask self-represented litigants a question which SRLs try to answer – and vice versa.
 
____________________________________________________________

As fewer patients sue their doctor, the rate of winning malpractice suits is dropping too

When a doctor makes a mistake, data obtained by CBC shows seeking compensation can be an uphill battle

_______________________________________________________

British Columbia AG limits expert use in injury claims

British Columbia has brought in amendments to its Supreme Court Civil Rules regulations,  which will limit the number of experts and expert reports that can be used in motor vehicle disputes, with further amendments effective next year on all injury claims. 
 
____________________________________________________________
 
Dewitt v. State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Co., 2019 ONSC 2349 (CanLII), <http://canlii.ca/t/hztcl 
 

[59]        Pursuant to s. 35(3) of the SABS regulation, payments of benefits are to be made “[w]ithin 10 business days after the insurer receives the application and completed disability certificate”. Section 46(2) interest accrues on any overdue amount from the date the amount became overdue. I would therefore fix March 30, 2006 (the date that was 11 business days after March 15, 2006) as the date from which plaintiff’s IRB payments became overdue and the date from which s. 46(2) interest should accrue.

Conclusion and Disposition

[60]        For these reasons, I declare as follows:

(a)         for the period between February 20, 2004 and March 29, 2006, simple (i.e. non-compound) interest is to be calculated on the bi-weekly sums due to plaintiff, from the date each payment was due, at the applicable rate for pre-judgment interest under the Courts of Justice Act;

(b)         starting on March 30, 2006, the total principal due as of that date and the accumulated interest calculated under (a) shall bear interest calculated pursuant to s. 46(2) of the SABS regulation;

(c)         starting on March 30, 2006, the further bi-weekly sums due to plaintiff shall bear interest calculated pursuant to s. 46(2) of the SABS regulation.

_____________

Overdue Payments

46 (1) An amount payable in respect of a benefit is overdue if the insurer fails to pay the benefit within the time required under this Part.  O. Reg. 403/96, s. 46 (1).

(2) If payment of a benefit under this Regulation is overdue, the insurer shall pay interest on the overdue amount for each day the amount is overdue from the date the amount became overdue at the rate of 2 per cent per month compounded monthly.  O. Reg. 403/96, s. 46 (2).

Equates to 26.8% per year

April 17, 2019

 

EDITORIAL: Ford’s right, auto insurance is broken 

As the Fair Association of Victims for Accident Insurance Reform (FAIR) notes, this means they have to hire their own lawyers and medical experts to counter their insurance companies’ lawyers and medical experts, eating up billions of dollars that should be spent on treatment.  
__________________________________________________________________

What the Ontario Budget Means to Innocent Accident Victims and the Administration of Justice in Ontario

The 2019 Ontario budget entitled “Protecting What Matters Most” was released on April 11, 2019. It purports to look after the interest of the ‘little guy’. Sadly the budget suggests that access to justice and protection of the rights of innocent accident victims is not a high priority for this Government. Despite an underfunded, complex and antiquated justice system, the Government plans to reduce overall funding to the justice sector. 
 
_____________________________________________________________

Healthcare Providers Respond to Auto Reform Announcements with Cautious Optimism

The Ontario Rehab Alliance (ORA), representing healthcare providers in the auto sector, sees much to applaud in the blueprint to improve the province’s auto insurance system presented in the 2019 Budget. “On behalf of our seriously injured clients we are thrilled with the return to the higher level of coverage for catastrophic injuries and relieved that this government has protected other accident benefits after years of cuts”, says Laurie Davis, Executive Director of the ORA.

http://www.fairassociation.ca/2019/04/healthcare-providers-respond-to-auto-reform-announcements-with-cautious-optimism/

______________________________________________________

Rehab First Auto Insurance Submission to Finance Minister Fedeli

Auto insurance in Ontario is segmented according to nine lines of coverage. Our submission focuses on the two lines which represent the largest percentage of claim
costs, they being the Statutory Accident Benefit and Third Party Liability-Personal Injury lines. According to FSCO, in the 2015, 2016 and 2017 calendar years, those lines,
respectively, accounted for 58.1%, 56.2% and 52.4% of auto insurance claims costs.
 
______________________________________________________

Traffic accident a case of the ‘unusual and usual:’ Paciocco

A “rare” case where a passenger suddenly grabbed the steering wheel of a car causing an accident presents different problems and challenges, Windsor personal injury lawyer Gino Paciocco tells AdvocateDaily.com
______________________________________________________________

Cannabis arrest exposes flaws in new impaired driving laws

The arrest of a Nova Scotia motorist whose saliva tested positive for cannabis demonstrates an inherent flaw in Canada’s new impaired driving legislation, Toronto criminal lawyer Jacob Stilman tells AdvocateDaily.com
 
 

April 16, 2019

What your auto client may like about Ontario budget

Some Ontario motorists would like an auto insurance system that lets carriers offer lower rates to clients who use the carriers’ preferred collision repair or healthcare facilities, an Insurance Bureau of Canada official suggests. 
 
___________________________________________________________________

Cutting Legal Aid: Reducing Access to Justice and Increasing Other Social Costs 

People who cannot afford lawyers (or in some cases paralegals) are at risk of not having their rights vindicated. Or they may not even try to assert their rights in the first place. A great number of ad hoc arrangements have been created to respond to this failure to provide access to justice, but the most systematic is the legal aid system. 
 
________________________________________________________________

Illegal activity doesn’t preclude accident benefits

The Divisional Court case upheld a Licence Appeal Tribunal adjudicator’s decision to award accident benefits to a woman who hit her head on concrete during a “car surfing” accident. 
 
________________________________________________________________

Sustainability of self-regulation scrutinized

Bencher candidate John Nunziata says he thinks the provincial government may have to intervene in the legal profession’s self-regulation model following the bencher election ending April 30. 
 
______________________________________________________________

Ontario to launch redesigned driver’s licence to prevent fraud, identity theft

TORONTO — The Ontario driver’s licence is getting a facelift that the Progressive Conservative government said will help combat fraud and identity theft. 
 
_______________________________________________________________

Ontario Health Claims Database HCDB Standard Report 2018 

 Effective February 1, 2011, Ontario health care facilities (including their associated health care providers) use the Health Claims for Auto Insurance (HCAI) system to submit Ontario Claims Forms (OCFs) 18, 21 and 23 to Ontario licensed automobile insurers. Insurers use the same system to communicate their decisions to the health care facilities.
 
______________________________________________________________

Ford government to merge ambulance services across Ontario

The Ford government intends to merge the 59 local ambulance services in Ontario into just 10, CBC News has learned.  
 
________________________________________________________________

Caregivers as Partners education for health care providers

Created by The Change Foundation, in partnership with the Changing CARE teams, Caregivers as Partners is an educational series for providers that helps them improve the experience of family caregivers through practical tips and examples. 
 
_______________________________________________________________

Neck Pain from Accidents

When a person is involved in any type of accident, whether this is a car accident or a workplace accident, people first start looking for visible injuries. Visible injuries include seeing blood or even bone sticking out of the skin from broken arms or the like. 
 
_______________________________________________________________

Here’s why your car insurance bill is too high, and why that’s so hard to fix

Understanding the problems plaguing the Newfoundland and Labrador car insurance industry is about as easy as a foggy drive down a pothole-ridden highway. 
 
______________________________________________________________

NL government reveals planned adjustments for auto insurance system

Newfoundland and Labrador’s government has unveiled a plan to fix the province’s increasingly pricey auto insurance – but not everyone is happy about some of the measures proposed. 
 

April 15, 2019

FAIR Press Release: 

Positive News for Ontario’s Injured Car Accident Survivors

For further information: Rhona DesRoches, FAIR, Board Chair at fairautoinsurance@gmail.com

_______________________________________________________

IBC: Everyone is “optimistic” for changes to Ontario’s auto insurance

The Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC) has high hopes that the Ontario government’s plan to fix the province’s “broken” auto insurance can help reduce premiums for drivers. 
 
____________________________________________________________________
Your insurance company can make you update your information any time, even if you haven’t moved or suddenly become an Uber driver. 
 
_______________________________________________________________

How the industry is tackling insurance fraud

Insurers need to work with regulators and other carriers to help fight the growing problem of insurance fraud, industry professionals say. 
 
_______________________________________________________________

Ontario PCs want to make it next to impossible to sue the government

Premier Doug Ford’s Progressive Conservatives are moving to make it harder to sue the Ontario government. 

https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/toronto/proceedings-against-the-crown-act-repeal-replace-pcs-1.5097205

_______________________________________________________________
Common Limitation Period Pitfalls and How to Avoid Them
There are numerous “pitfalls” that can lead to missed limitation periods and other limitation period problems. Some of these pitfalls are relatively easy to avoid whereas others can trip up even the most skilled and careful of lawyers. 
 
_______________________________________________________________

Province launches new personal support worker registry

The province has launched a new registry to track personal support workers, in what some experts are calling a move to create more regulation for one of Ontario’s largest groups of frontline healthcare providers. 
 
________________________________________________________________

How Does Music Affect Your Brain? Every Imaginable Way

Waking up. Working out. Riding the bus. Music is an ever-present companion for many of us, and its impact is undeniable. You know music makes you move and triggers emotional responses, but how and why? What changes when you play music, rather than simply listen? In the latest episode of Tech Effects, we tried to find out. Our first stop was USC’s Brain & Creativity Institute, where I headed into the fMRI to see how my brain responded to musical cues—and how my body did, too. 
 
 
______________________________________________________________

Injured veterans turning to medical marijuana in increasing numbers

The number of injured veterans using medical marijuana has skyrocketed, according to Veterans Affairs Canada, while opioid use has decreased.

______________________________________________________________

‘Barely hanging on to life’: Roger Foley shares his fight for home care with UN envoy

A United Nations disabilities advocate says “systemic change” is desperately needed after she toured Canada to review cases of people with disabilities, including a complaint from a terminally ill man who has been in a London, Ont., hospital while fighting to get self-directed care at home. 
 
_____________________________________________________________
Scalabrini. v. Kahn, 2019 ONSC 2278 (CanLII), <http://canlii.ca/t/hznqj 
 
[3]                                 The Plaintiff submits that the Proposed Plaintiff’’s injuries could only be discovered after the full impact of the Plaintiff, her husband’s injuries and impairments had set in and impacted her life and the safety of their living environment, which occurred on or about October 1, 2018.  As a consequence it is submitted that the evidence shows reason to add Cinzia as a Plaintiff pursuant to the Family Law Act to the within action, on the basis of discoverability.

[37]                    I am satisfied that there is a reasonable possibility that the Proposed Plaintiff could not have known the full extent and severity that her husband’s injuries would have upon her. It was not until the Proposed Plaintiff began to experience health concerns on account of the mold growing in her house, that the full extent of her own injuries became apparent, as well as the extent of her expenses incurred for the benefit of the Plaintiff, housekeeping services performed in place of the Plaintiff, and losses in care, guidance and companionship became apparent.

[38]                    A consideration of the relevant factors as outlined above leads me to only one conclusion. The Court should grant the leave sought by the moving party.

Assessor’s medical opinion evidence, libel, and public interest case

Maia Bent, et al. v. Howard Platnick, et al., 2019 CanLII 35199 (SCC)

More detail re SCC leave to appeal https://www.scc-csc.ca/case-dossier/info/dock-regi-eng.aspx?cas=38374

Platnick v. Bent, 2018 ONCA 851 (CanLII)

Platnick v. Bent, 2018 ONCA 687 (CanLII)

Platnick v Bent, 2017 ONSC 585 (CanLII)

Platnick v. Bent – Endorsement (1) ONSC 7340 20161201

Platnick v. Bent – Endorsement Re Preliminary Motion (2) ONSC 7474 20161201

Statement of Claim – FILED – 3334-15 – September 3

The original media story: http://www.insurancebusiness.ca/ca/news/auto/medical-files-routinely-altered-to-suit-insurers-claims-fair-186692.aspx?p=1

The latest stories in the media:

https://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/investigations/doctors-insurance-independent-medical-examinations/article37141790/

https://www.thestar.com/news/gta/2016/12/08/md-who-wrote-misleading-insurance-report-under-investigation.html

http://news.nationalpost.com/news/ontario-doctor-misrepresented-views-on-catastrophic-injuries-to-benefit-insurer-judge-rules

https://www.thestar.com/news/canada/2016/12/06/toronto-doctor-cant-sue-over-substantially-true-warning-he-altered-medical-reports-to-thwart-insurance-claims.html

Letter to MPPs regarding medical file manipulations Dec 23 2014

more info see: http://www.fairassociation.ca/the-independent-medical-examination-imeie/  and   http://www.fairassociation.ca/ime-providers-adverse-comments/

http://www.fairassociation.ca/muzzling-criticism/ 

Healthcare Providers Respond to Auto Reform Announcements with Cautious Optimism

The Ontario Rehab Alliance (ORA), representing healthcare providers in the auto sector, sees much to applaud in the blueprint to improve the province’s auto insurance system presented in the 2019 Budget.

“On behalf of our seriously injured clients we are thrilled with the return to the higher level of coverage for catastrophic injuries and relieved that this government has protected other accident benefits after years of cuts”, says Laurie Davis, Executive Director of the ORA.

ORA Media Release – Heathcare Providers Cautiously Optimistic About Auto Reform

Rehab First Auto Insurance Submission to Finance Minister Fedeli

Auto insurance in Ontario is segmented according to nine lines of coverage. Our submission focuses on the two lines which represent the largest percentage of claim
costs, they being the Statutory Accident Benefit and Third Party Liability-Personal
Injury lines. According to FSCO, in the 2015, 2016 and 2017 calendar years, those lines,
respectively, accounted for 58.1%, 56.2% and 52.4% of auto insurance claims costs.

Rehab First – 2019-Auto Insce Accessibility Affordability Submission to Minister Fedeli

Positive News for Ontario’s Injured Car Accident Survivors

TORONTO, April 15, 2019 PRESS RELEASE – Last week Ontario’s drivers received the first positive news they’ve heard in over a decade.

FAIR is pleased to see that coverage for the most injured of accident victims will be increased to the pre-June 2016 level of $2 million in med/rehab benefits for catastrophically injured Ontarians.

The concerns of motor vehicle accident (MVA) survivors under the previous government had been ignored and the erosion of coverage had allowed insurers to download a significant number of victims onto taxpayers who were already paying some of the highest premiums in Canada.

Auto insurance has been dysfunctional and broken for many years and this has left injured Ontarians to fend for themselves to find treatments when insurers ignored their responsibilities. The changes in the 2019 Budget are the first indication that this government was listening to consumers and they have a taken a good first step to improve things for this vulnerable population.

Car accident victims in Ontario have faced many barriers to recovery, both in the medical file manipulations by insurers who have been dodging the responsibility owed to their injured customers and in the increased legal costs of holding their insurers accountable.

According to Tammy Kirkwood, Vice Chair of FAIR “This government listened and heard the need for positive changes for the victims of MVA. It will be a good thing to see that insurance is going to start working to be the safety net we need after the traumatic event of an auto accident.” Ms. Kirkwood is herself a survivor of a horrific car accident with a dump truck some years ago and has dedicated much of her time to ensure that others have the same recovery options and resources as she did post accident. “We all deserve to be the best we can be and insurers should be on board with that as a promise to their injured customers.”

FAIR looks forward to working with stakeholders in a new era of “Putting Drivers First” in Ontario and toward protecting the rights of injured consumers to access the treatments they need in order to reach maximum recovery.

‘FAIR – supporting auto accident victims through advocacy and education’

SOURCE: FAIR Association of Victims for Accident Insurance Reform 

For further information: Rhona DesRoches, FAIR, Board Chair at fairautoinsurance@gmail.com, http://www.fairassociation.ca

April 12, 2019

What we know so far about upcoming changes to auto insurance as listed in the 2019 Budget  

____________________________________________

Province Announces Sweeping Changes to Auto Insurance

The Provincial Government released their budget yesterday and announced ‘Transformative Auto Insurance’ reforms but have provided little information on how much drivers will save, and how much injured people may lose in benefits. What is clear is that this is a wide scale plan aimed at reducing insurance rates for drivers. No targets were released as to how much they will drop. The changes seem to be aimed at making the insurance claim process easier for claimants in the event of car accidents and personal injury. The government hopes to create more competition between insurance companies as well. 
 
__________________________________________________________________

Insurers respond to Ontario’s multi-year auto insurance plan

The government of Ontario has unveiled its budget for 2019, which includes a blueprint to improve the province’s broken auto insurance system – a decision that insurers are wholeheartedly supporting. 
 
______________________________________________________________

Ontario Government Takes a Different Approach to Auto Insurance Reforms

The 2019 Ontario Budget is out and there’s some positive news for auto insurance consumers. 
 
______________________________________________________________

Ford government reveals ‘transformative’ auto insurance reforms, but doesn’t say how much drivers will save

The Ford government has revealed a sweeping plan to reduce auto insurance rates, though it is not saying how much drivers should expect to save under the new rules. 
 
_______________________________________________________________

2019 Ontario Budget Protecting What Matters Most

_______________________________________________________________

Allen Wynperle discussing the 2019 Ontario Budget

________________________________________________________________

Ontario Budget 2019 Announces $1 Billion in OW and ODSP Cuts

The 2019/2020 Ontario Budget was announced today, and creates even more uncertainty for people who receive benefits from the Ontario Works (OW) and Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP) system. 
 
________________________________________________________________

How Aviva is simplifying its claims process

Aviva Canada has worked with provincial regulators to simplify its products and the claims process for customers. 
 
_______________________________________________________________

Family Fails to Declare 17 Year Old Son with G2 in Household – Policy Cancelled – Costs Awarded – Seetaram v. Allstate Insurance Company of Canada, 2019 ONSC 683

IS INSURANCE POLICY VALID:  duty to disclose material changes in the insured risk; applicant fails to advise insurer of change in risk; policy revoke is warranted; costs assessed to insured 
 
____________________________________________

Law Society of Ontario and Arkadii Barapp

____________________________________________

18-004555 v Wawanesa Insurance, 2019 CanLII 22203 (ON LAT), <http://canlii.ca/t/hz9f0 

ISSUES

      [3]      The issues before me that I must decide are:

                       (i)      Is the respondent required to advise the applicant of the existence of surveillance, if any?

                       (ii)     If the answer to (i) is yes, is the respondent required to provide the applicant with complete, unredacted surveillance tapes and records if the respondent does not intend to rely on that evidence at the hearing?

      [4]      To determine these issues, I must answer the following questions:

                     (i)      If surveillance evidence exists, is it relevant to the issues in dispute in this application?

                     (ii)     If surveillance evidence is relevant, is the applicant entitled to have the existence of the same disclosed and the surveillance evidence produced, or is some or all of what is sought protected from disclosure by litigation privilege?

RESULT

   [5]        Having considered the evidence and the parties’ submissions, my decision and reasons are as follows:

                     (i)      Surveillance that is related to the issues in dispute, if any, is relevant to this application.

                     (ii)     Litigation privilege arose in this case on September 4, 2014 when the applicant filed an application for arbitration to the Financial Services Commission of Ontario (FSCO) claiming accident benefits arising out of the May 1, 2013 accident (“2014 application”), and I find that:

a)        the respondent must advise the applicant of the existence of all surveillance, if any, conducted prior to September 4, 2014 and provide the applicant with the date, time, place and reason for the surveillance; and

b)        the respondent must provide copies of any surveillance conducted before September 4, 2014 that relates to the issues in dispute. The respondent shall be entitled to redact solicitor-client privileged communications, if any.

                     (iii)     The respondent is not required to advise the applicant of the existence of any surveillance or provide copies of any surveillance evidence that relates to surveillance conducted after litigation privilege arose on September 4, 2014, unless the respondent intends to rely on it at the hearing.

                     (iv)     The respondent shall comply with the Tribunal’s Common Rules of Practice & Procedure[1] (the “Tribunal Rules”) with respect to any surveillance evidence it intends to rely upon at the hearing. 

 
 

April 10, 2019

When a car is classified as a write-off, that usually means it’s time for a new one. As many consider Ontario’s system of auto insurance regulation as badly broken, could the same guidance be applied here? 
 
___________________________________________________________________

Insurers object to characterization of Ontario auto as “profitable”

Canada’s home, auto and business insurers are objecting to a recent characterization of Ontario’s auto insurance regime as “profitable.” 
 
_______________________________________________________________

Ontario city partly liable in collision that injured four

A recent Supreme Court of Canada decision means the City of Hamilton is partly liable in a motor vehicle bodily injury lawsuit because there was no painted stop line immediately before an intersection. 
 
_______________________________________________________________

Car accident while delivering food leaves woman with $8,400 repair bill

A woman working for Skip the Dishes is out thousands of dollars after she discovered that her regular insurance policy doesn’t cover collisions that take place on the job. 
 
______________________________________________________________

What are the Main Differences Between STD and LTD Benefits?

The waiting period for STD benefits is relatively short compared to LTD benefits and can be as short as 1 day or as long as 1 week. Short-term disability benefits are meant to provide almost immediate financial assistance when you become disabled, whereas LTD benefits could have a waiting period of anywhere from 119 days to 52 weeks. 
 
_______________________________________________________________
 
Take a stance and change the future for Ontarians with disabilities 
__________________________________________

$175,000 Non-Pecuniary Assessment for Chronic Psychological Injuries

In the recent case (Anssari v. Alborzpour) the Plaintiff was injured in a 2014 collision.  She sustained various psychological injuries including severe depression, anxiety, and post-traumatic stress symptoms.  These continued to the time of trial and were likely to continue in the future.