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Car accidents: What if the other driver is unidentified or uninsured?

It happens on Mississauga’s crowded roads: Two vehicles collide, and one or both drivers carry no automobile insurance. The Ontario Ministry of Transportation does not track how many people are driving cars without insurance, but it’s a growing concern. Many uninsured drivers flee the scene of an accident immediately, and so may be unidentified as well as uninsured. What happens in such cases? What if you have an accident with an uninsured or unidentified driver? If you’re involved in such an accident, you may be able to obtain some compensation for personal injuries or damage to your vehicle. The Ontario Government created a Motor Vehicle Accident Claims Fund (MVACF) to compensate automobile accident victims who have no recourse through an insurer. This typically involves accidents involving hit-and-runs, pedestrian or cyclist accidents, uninsured drivers or stolen vehicles. The Ministry pays an MVACF claim only if there is no insurer liable to pay your claim. Making a Motor Vehicle Accident Claims Fund claim The most the Ministry may pay for a single accident is $200,000, plus limited legal costs and disbursements. You must try to find an insurer to pay your claim, even if the other driver is unidentified. You must make reasonable efforts to find the unidentified driver, including: Working with police Trying to find video if the accident took place at an intersection with traffic cameras, or Tracking down possible witnesses to the accident. If you cannot do this, you can then apply for compensation from the MVACF by completing an Application for Payment under section 7 of the Motor Vehicle Accident Claims Act. The legislation and procedures are complex, and it is wise to retain the help of an experienced personal injury lawyer if you decide to seek this compensation from the Ontario Government.

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Proposed Legislation Targets Victims Of Auto Accidents

Insurance companies are proposing changes that will affect the rights of car accident victims. The impact of these changes could mean that victims may not receive the full compensation amounts they are fighting for. If you have been injured in a car accident, consult a personal injury lawyer as soon as possible. He or she will assess your case, and provide you with legal advice to help you pursue the compensation you need to move forward. Proposed Changes Loom Ahead According to an article on the Ontario Trial Lawyers Association website, insurance companies are attempting to take away certain rights from the victims of car auto accidents in exchange for making insurance rates more affordable for the public. However, the rights in question may make it harder for a victim to prove their losses in court. One example of the proposed changes includes the criteria to make a claim. The suggested change is that victims must pass a stricter threshold injury test that shows a more “permanent, serious impairment of an important physical, mental or psychological function.” How Will These Changes Affect Personal Injury Victims? Should these changes be implemented, victims who may need just a few years to recover may be out of luck to receive compensation. If victims suffer a loss in income for an extended period or endure pain and suffering due to an accident, they may not be able to pursue sufficient financial resources to cover their losses. What Can You Do To Voice Your Opinion? There are no final decisions on these proposed changes at the moment. However, if you feel that these changes should not be made, or that they are unfair, you may contact your local government representative and let them know your concerns. If you, a friend or a family member are victims of someone’s negligence and suffering from injuries and losses, contact us to speak to one of our lawyers to know your rights and what steps you should be taking in order to protect your rights for the future.

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Prepare Yourself For Summer Driving Emergencies

Winter isn’t the only time of year when we should make sure we’re prepared for car accidents. As temperatures rise, so do concerns about summer driving conditions. Functioning lighting systems and reflective safety gear may all come in handy on the way to cottage country or a family vacation. According to Autotrader.ca, there are a couple of tips drivers should know to prepare themselves in the event of a collision. Car accidents, and other motor vehicle accidents, may result in catastrophic injuries such as paralysis or brain damage. In these cases, it’s important to consult with a personal injury lawyer to determine your legal rights to compensation. A personal injury lawyer can help you obtain compensation amounts above policy requirements, as well as assess the full extent of your losses. Summer Driving Tips As people travel on isolated roads to camping or out-of-town vacation destinations, its important to make sure you are prepared in the event of an accident. These tips may help you avoid an accident, and can help you protect injured passengers as you wait for emergency responders. Traveling With A Car Safety Kit: These kits normally include tools and supplies that can be used in a variety of situations. They can be purchased from stores like Canadian Tire and Wal-Mart, but can also be made at home. Your kit should include: Reflective warning triangles or flares A reflective vest First aid kit (including bandages, alcohol wipes, gauze, scissors, tweezers) Blankets Flashlights Tool-kit (including screwdrivers, pliers, knives) Whistles to attract help Candles, tins and matches Granola bars Water Navigating Through Challenging Weather Conditions A light rain can easily turn into a torrential downpour, or a fog warning can turn into zero visibility. In these cases, it’s best to pull over until it’s less dangerous to avoid an accident. However, pulling over is not always possible on some roads. If you can’t pull over, make sure your vehicle’s lighting systems are in full working order so you’re visible to other drivers on the road. It’s also best advised to slow down when driving and to leave lots of space between cars and other motor vehicles. “If you, a friend or a family member are victims of someone’s negligence and suffering from injuries and losses, contact us to speak to one of our lawyers to know your rights and what steps you should be taking in order to protect your rights for the future.”

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