Choosing a Lawyer

Choosing a lawyer after a serious injury can be a difficult and daunting decision. Some of the questions that should be asked of any lawyer who wants to represent you or your loved one before you make your selection are:

FAQs

How is the lawyer going to charge you legal fees?

In Ontario there are two ways a lawyer can charge you.

  • Time based fees – Fees are based on the time spent by the lawyer and are generally billed on an hourly rate. Payment is required on a regular basis. Fees charged by the lawyer are not dependent on the result obtained for the client.
  • Contingency fees – The fees charged by the lawyer are a percentage of the amount recovered for the client. No fees are charged until the client’s action is resolved.

FMT llp charges legal fees for personal injury matters on a contingency basis. No amount is paid for legal fees until your case resolves. If there is no recovery, no legal fees are owed. In most cases the party responsible for the injury pays a significant portion of the legal fees.

How is the lawyer going to charge you for disbursements?

Disbursements include any amounts paid by a lawyer to third parties for things such as medical assessments, expert witnesses, investigators, accountants, medical records, and court fees. Some lawyers require a client to pay for disbursements up-front or on an on-going basis.

FMT llp only charges for disbursements after your case has resolved. In most cases the party responsible for the injury pays for a significant portion of the disbursements.

Does the lawyer have sufficient financial resources to finance your case to conclusion?

Litigating serious personal injury claims requires a large financial commitment from the law firm. To take a significant case to trial can cost the law firm in excess of $100,000. A law firm must have sufficient financial resources to see a case through trial, so that the final decision as to whether to take your case to trial is based on the clients best interests not the financial solvency of the lawyer.

FMT llp has sufficient finances resources to finance your case as long as it takes to have the case resolved.

How long will it take to get your case resolved?

No one can predict the future with precision. Beware of any lawyer that promises to have your case resolved quickly. Typically it takes any significant injury at least two years to recover to a point that medical doctors can assess how the injury will react into the future.

At FMT llp our primary concern is that you do not get undercompensated. We will not recommend resolution of your matter until we are confident, with the assistance of medical professionals, that your condition will not deteriorate. It is our belief that your case is worth the most when it is ready for trial. Our objective is to get the case ready for trial as quickly as possible so the best possible resolution can be obtained.

Does the lawyer have sufficient staff and technical support to conduct your case?

Personal injury litigation requires a significant time investment to prepare a case for resolution. A lawyer who takes on a serious personal injury case must have an experienced team to support them to make sure that any accident benefits issues are dealt with efficiently, the appropriate medical records are requested and reviewed and the matter proceeds through the litigation process as quickly as possible.

FMT llp has a team of lawyers, law clerks and assistants who are all experienced in personal injury litigation and whose sole focus is to ensure the best result for you. In addition FMT llp has made a substantial investment in cutting edge information technology to assist in presenting your case in the most proficient and effective manner possible.

Has the lawyer taken cases like yours successfully to trial?

Trials are becoming increasingly rare in Ontario due to limited judicial resources and the increased cost of taking matters to trial. Ask any lawyer who wants to act on your behalf if he or she has taken cases like yours successfully to trial. Ask them if they will do the trial themselves or refer the case to another lawyer once it is ready for trial.

The lawyers at FMT llp have an enviable trial record. We do not refer out trials to other lawyers. You will know that the lawyer who has handled your case throughout and knows it best will be doing the trial.

Does the lawyer have a policy for communications with clients?

FMT llp takes its responsibility to keep you informed very seriously. We have a policy, that is strictly enforced, that you are always to be in the "loop". We return all phone calls expiditiously. We respond to e-mails and other forms of communication in a timely manner.

Does the lawyer give back to the community?

FMT llp takes its responsibility to the community seriously. Our firm is a supporter of the Canadian Spinal Research Organization in its work to find a cure for spinal cord injuries. The Falconeri Munro Tucci llp Centre for Spinal Trauma at Sunnybrook Hospital is providing leadership for research and treatment of spinal cord injuries. FMT llp is also supporter of the Brain Injury Association of Toronto and the Ontario Brain Injury Association.