What To Do If You’ve Been Injured in a Motor Vehicle Accident in Ontario

car accident lawyer

We understand being involved in a motor vehicle accident can be a traumatic and stressful experience. Try not to panic and remember these steps:

1. Call the Police: if you’re able to do so, call the police from the scene of the accident. Even though new provisions have taken effect in Ontario stating the police do not need to attend the scene of the accident if the collision is a minor one, it is always advisable to call the police to inform them of the accident. Should the police refuse to attend the scene of the accident, they will advise you on attending a collision centre to report the accident, which you should go to immediately;

2. Record Information: if you are able to, record information relevant to the collision. This means taking pictures of the scene of the accident and exchanging information with the opposing driver. If applicable, get contact information from nearby witnesses who can provide details of the accident. Do not, under any circumstances, post information relating to the collision or your injuries on social media. Keep your discussions with the opposing driver basic and do not admit to anything as your statements could be recorded from their dashcam or a hidden video/audio recorder;

3. Notify Your Insurer: you must notify your insurer of your accident within 7 days of your accident. Failing to report your accident to your insurer may result in ineligibility of benefits. Take notes during your conversation with the insurance adjuster and provide basic information only.

Tell your adjuster that you will be hiring a lawyer to assist you and that your lawyer will be contacting the insurer shortly. If you ever feel uncomfortable or unsure answering certain questions, simply tell the adjuster to contact your lawyer for more information.  

Refuse an in-person meeting with your adjuster or the request for an official statement and state that you would like to have your lawyer present before participating in any of these things.  

If you do not have your own car insurance or do not live with someone that has car insurance that you are dependent on, contact the opposing party’s insurance company. If the opposing party can not be identified and you have no other sources to claim accident benefits from, contact a lawyer who will submit an application on your behalf to the Motor Vehicle Accident Claims Fund.  

Never admit to any statements and never sign or send documents to your insurer before checking with your lawyer.  

Remember, injuries resulting from an accident may not be apparent right away. Insurers will often try to diminish your injuries and discourage you from pursuing a claim but we all deal with injuries and accidents differently. Don’t let your insurer dictate how you’re feeling. 

4. Visit a Health Professional: should your injuries not require you to attend a hospital immediately following the collision, visit a doctor or other medical specialist to report your injuries on the day of the accident or as soon as you possible can. If you’re unable to see your family doctor, visit a walk-in clinic to report your injuries. If you suffer from any psychological injuries following the accident – sleep issues, anxiety etc. make sure to report these as well. Insurers often state that the injured party failed to see a doctor following the collision, which they argue, means that the accident was not significant. BE PROACTIVE.

5. Call Your Lawyer: call a personal injury lawyer who can assist you with all aspects of your claim. Your lawyer will get in touch with your insurer and submit all relevant documents related to your claim on your behalf. Unlike a paralegal, a lawyer can represent you for your accident benefits claim and the claim against your opposing driver. You usually have 30 days from the accident date to submit your application for accident benefits but it is best to submit your application as soon as possible to ensure that any benefits owing to you like income replacement benefits can start as soon as possible.

Bring all relevant documents to your initial meeting with your lawyer including but not limited to: your police report or collision report, your private or extended health benefits information and all relevant medical documents relating to your accident.  

HSK Law’s personal injury team works on a contingency fee basis so you pay no legal fees until your claim settles. 

 Contact Us 

If you been involved in a motor vehicle accident, call us now for a free consultation at 416-238-7105 or email us at info@hsklaw.ca

Disclaimer: This article does not serve as or should be construed as legal advice. It is only intended to provide general information. No portion or use of this article establishes a lawyer-client relationship with our firm.


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