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After a Motor Vehicle Accident: What You Should Know

Every year, millions of people are involved in motor vehicle accidents. Being involved in a motor vehicle accident can be a scary thing whether it is a little fender bender, or a tragic and dangerous crash. People are in shock after an accident occurs and become very nervous whether it is their fault or not. Whether an accident is your fault or not, you should follow some basic steps.

Check if anyone is injured

The most important step after an accident is to check if any drivers or passengers need a medical help. If they do, call for emergency immediately. A person’s life should always be the number one concern to everyone involved.

Call the Police

Call the police right away after the accident so that you can file a car accident report with them. A police report will be one of the pieces of evidence used in the investigation of the crash. Do not discuss the accident with the other vehicles involved.

Information Gathering

Get information from all of the vehicles involved, including his or her name, address, contact number, vehicle identification number and the insurance company information. If there are any witnesses, get their contact information.

Contact your Insurance Company

After an accident the insurance companies involved will begin their investigation. Give your insurance company the details of the accident. If you can call them while the police are present it may be even better as the police may be able to give them information that you cannot. This step may also be necessary if the other driver was not insured or has inadequate coverage.

Contact a Personal Injury Lawyer

If the insurance company does not accept fault or if you are seriously injured, contact a personal injury lawyer. Mazin & Associates, PC, personal injury lawyers can communicate for you with the insurance companies and make recommendations to help you to get the maximum compensation. Call us at (416) 625-2122 today for a free consultation.

10 Steps to Take when Injured in an Accident

At Mazin & Associates, PC, we highly recommend that you follow these 10 steps.

  1. Contact the Police and advise them of all accident related details.
  2. Write down the names and contact information of everyone involved in the accident and any witnesses; if you are involved in a motor vehicle accident, obtain the insurance information as well as the driver’s licence and licence plate numbers of all other involved parties.
  3. See your family doctor and advise them of your injuries.
  4. Notify your Accident Benefits Insurance Provider of your involvement in a motor vehicle accident as soon as possible.
  5. If you are unable to work or go to school, notify your employer or school and advise them of the reason for your absence.
  6. Keep track of the names of all health professionals that you see in relation to your injuries from the accident – be sure to also keep track of the dates and times of your visits.
  7. Ensure that caregivers whether professionals, friends or family members, record the time that they spend caring for you and the activities that they help you with.
  8. Investigate whether you are eligible for treatment coverage or disability pay under any other insurance policies – check with your employer, your school and/or private plan providers.
  9. Keep the original receipts and invoices of all of your out-of pocket expenses related to your accident, including payment for caregiving, medication, assistive devices, etc.
  10. Talk to a car accident lawyer about your legal rights.

Texting isn’t the only Form of Distracted Driving

Texting while driving is considered distracted driving and is against the law. However, it’s not the only form of distracted driving that could get you a hefty fine, or worse, a serious or fatal injury.

In Ontario, it’s also illegal for drivers to talk, type, dial or email using hand-held cell phones and other hand-held communications and entertainment devices.

Research shows that drivers who use cell phones are four times more likely to be in a collision than drivers who focus on the road. And when drivers take their eyes off the road for more than two seconds, their crash risk doubles.

This chart from the Ontario Ministry of Transportation’s Website is a good reference for which electronic devices can and can’t be used while driving.

Tips to avoid distraction

There are many simple steps you can take to avoid being distracted while you drive:

  • Use your cell phone only when you’re parked, or have a passenger take the call.
  • Let calls go to voicemail.
  • Turn off your cell phone before you start driving.
  • Identify and preset your vehicle’s climate control, radio and CD player.
  • Plan your route and set your GPS before you leave.
  • When you’re hungry or thirsty, take a break. Don’t eat or drink while you drive.
  • Avoid other distractions like reading maps, grooming activities and tending to children and pets.

Source: Ontario Ministry of Transportation

If you have been injured in a car accident caused by a distracted driver, consult a Personal Injury Lawyer right now.


How to Identify Whiplash Following a Car Accident

Whiplash is a form of neck injury caused by forceful, rapid back-and-forth movement of the neck. According to the Mayo Clinic, whiplash most often occurs during a rear-end car accident and the signs and symptoms of whiplash may include:

  • Neck pain and stiffness
  • Worsening of pain with neck movement
  • Loss of range of motion in the neck
  • Headaches, most often starting at the base of the skull
  • Tenderness or pain in shoulder, upper back or arms
  • Tingling or numbness in the arms
  • Fatigue
  • Dizziness

Some people also experience:

  • Blurred vision
  • Ringing in the ears (tinnitus)
  • Sleep disturbances
  • Irritability
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Memory problems
  • Depression

Whiplash signs and symptoms usually develop within 24 hours of the injury.

Always seek medical attention as soon as possible following a car accident to ensure you receive a proper diagnosis and treatment plan. Most people recover from whiplash within a few months, while some people experience chronic neck pain and other ongoing complications.

The course of treatment depends on the severity of your whiplash injury. For some people, over-the-counter drugs and at-home care may be sufficient. Other people may need prescription drugs, specialized pain treatment or physical therapy.

If you’ve been in a car accident and suffer from whiplash or another critical injury, consult a Car Accident Lawyer to help recover any compensation you may be entitled to while you focus on recovering.


Tips to Keep Your Baby Safe in the Car

Car crashes are among some of the biggest dangers to babies. All babies need a rear-facing car seat for their first ride home from the hospital.

Your baby will use this seat whenever you travel– even the shortest distance– for one year or longer. While babies may use a forward-facing car seat once they are at least one year old and at least 10 kg, it is safest for them to rear-face as long as possible.

Follow these car seat safety tips:

  • Look for a car seat with the highest rear-facing weight and length limits once your child has outgrown their first car seat.
  • Always install the car seat in the rear seat—the middle position is the safest.
  • Read the manufacturer’s instructions for the car seat and follow all age, height and weight specifications.
  • Secure the car seat using the Universal Anchorage System (UAS or LATCH), which is now mandatory in all car models. Follow both the car seat and car manual instructions. If the UAS system does not secure the seat adequately, then use the seat belt, as indicated in the car seat instructions.
  • Check that the car seat does not move more than 2.5 cm (1 inch) forward or from side to side once it is installed.
  • Harness straps should be threaded just at or below your baby’s shoulders. The chest clip should be at armpit level and the harness should fit snugly.
  • Tuck a blanket around your baby if needed instead of using a bunting bag.
  • Don’t use a car seat that has been in a car crash, even a minor one. It is not safe.
  • Never leave your baby unattended in a car, even to run a quick errand.

If you or someone you love has been seriously injured in a car accident, consult a Personal Injury Lawyer.

Source: Canadian Pediatric Society.

Tips for Achieving Maximum Protection from your Airbags and Seatbelts

Fuel consumption, comfort and price are important factors that many of us consider when purchasing a vehicle but safety features also need to be a top priority.

In a Public Opinion Survey done by Transport Canada, airbags and seat belts are among the most common safety features that Canadians recognize on their vehicles but they need to be used properly in order to achieve maximum protection.


Airbags are essential in helping prevent injuries and death, especially in frontal (i.e. head-on) collisions. Airbags are inflatable devices that deploy in a fraction of a second during a serious collision. Make sure that you do the following each time you get into your vehicle:

  • Always wear your lap and shoulder belt system. Airbags are not a replacement for seatbelts and are specifically designed to work with the seat belt restraint system. Failure to buckle-up will put you at significant, additional risk.
  • Maintain distance between yourself and the airbag. Sit at least 10 inches (25 cm) away from the steering wheel airbag. Sitting any closer than 10 inches puts you (or your passengers) at risk of making contact with the airbag while it’s inflating.
  • Tilt the steering wheel toward your chest, not your head or neck.
  • Frontal airbags on the passenger side are larger, so passengers should move the vehicle seat back as far as possible to provide plenty of room.
  • Front seat passengers should not put their feet or any objects on the dashboard.

Seat Belts

Transport Canada estimates that if all drivers and passengers always wore their seat belts, 300 lives would be saved every year in Canada. A seatbelt works by holding the occupant in place in the seat, reducing the risk of them striking the interior of the vehicle, colliding with other passengers or being ejected during impact or emergency braking.

A few key points to remember when using a seat belt:

  • Wear a lap/shoulder belt system when available.
  • Sit up straight and position the lap belt low over the pelvic bones / hips (not stomach) and the shoulder belt over the shoulder and across the chest. Never place the shoulder belt under the arm or behind the back. It’s dangerous.
  • All occupants in a vehicle must be properly wearing a seat belt whether in motion or not.
  • During pregnancy, women should wear the lap belt snug, low over the pelvic bones (below the baby) and the shoulder belt snug against the chest. The baby will be safer if the mother is protected in a crash.

If you or someone you know has an auto related injury, contact Mazin & Associates, PC to schedule your free consultation.

Source: Whiplash Prevention Campaign


Improving Safe Driving: No Texting while Driving App

Hundreds of thousands of people are injured, and thousands killed, by distracted drivers each year. Distracted driving is driving while doing another activity that takes your attention away from driving. Distracted driving can increase the chance of a motor vehicle crash.

There are three main types of distractions:

  • Visual: taking your eyes off the road
  • Manual: taking your hands off the wheel
  • Cognitive: taking your mind off of driving

Texting while driving is frequently a cause of distracted driving car accidents. Smartphones have made it easy for us to stay connected at all times. But that can pose serious safety risks if someone decides to check his or her text messages, emails, phone calls, or any other mobile applications while driving.

While technology like smartphones, GPS systems and entertainment devices account for most of the distractions drivers face while operating their vehicles today, technology in the form of apps can be useful. In response to distracted driving dangers, cellphone applications have been developed to prevent texting while driving. Smartphone apps that disable texting have been around for a few years, but have gained popularity and sophistication in recent years.

Apps that disable talking or texting when in motion can give parents of teens peace of mind and help those who manage commercial fleets ensure drivers comply with texting laws. These apps have their limitations, however, and do not work on all phones or in all scenarios. While this technology may help parents and commercial truck companies prevent texting while driving, it is not a foolproof solution.

As cell phone use and driving becomes a national problem, the chances of being involved in a car accident with a distracted driver increase. If you or a loved one are injured by the carelessness of another driver, contact Mazin & Associates, PC, Personal Injury Lawyer at (416) 625-2122 for a free consultation.

Can I Get Back to Exercising and Work After a Car Crash?

No matter how bold or fearless you might naturally be, nothing has the potential to “shake you up” quite like a car accident can; especially, if it was one where you incurred injuries.

After a car accident, the body needs time to recover through rest and relaxation. There are many common misconceptions related to exercise and work after a car accident. For example, “Can I go to work?” or “Should I start going to the gym?” These types of questions are more suited for doctors rather than lawyers. Make sure that you consult your physician before you begin any exercise regimen outside of the treatment that was already prescribed. S/he will be able to give you a professional opinion on whether your body is ready and how much you need to be starting off with.

The time and extent of the recovery will be determined based on your injuries, both internal and external. If the injuries sustained include bleeding, a doctor will probably tell you not to resume any major exercise or lifting. With non-bleeding injuries a doctor will need to gauge the level of inflammation in the body. Soft tissue injuries and whiplash can get worse after the first 48 hours of a car accident.

Simple tips that can help you to heal following a car crash (but make sure to get your doctor’s advice on all of these points first):

  1. Go home and rest
  2. Drink at least 6 cups of fluid every day for at least a week after your accident
  3. Make an appointment to see your physician immediately
  4. Don’t exercise right after a car accident
  5. You should start slow walks as soon as you are able to do
  6. Don’t stress yourself out

Although the accident may not have been your fault, your recovery is your responsibility. You must take the initiative and follow your doctor’s orders but you should also listen to your body. If you experience any pain, stop the exercise and inform your doctor of what is happening.

At Mazin & Associates, PC, Personal Injury Lawyers can help you find the best medical practitioners for your type of injuries. This will enable you to determine when you can go back to work. Call us at (416) 625-2122 today for a free consultation.

Should I Hire Lawyer if I Sustain Minor Injury?

From car accident cases to slip and falls, you may have suffered an injury as a result of someone else’s negligence. Many people are reluctant to hire a lawyer for injuries that appear relatively minor in nature. In many circumstances, this could be a big mistake and you may lose valuable compensation.

Injury lawyers may assist you with your physical, psychological and financial recovery following an accident. Here are a few reasons why you might consider hiring a lawyer for seemingly minor injuries.

Your Injuries may Worsen:

What appears to at least initially be a minor injury may with time reveal a more serious or even permanent impairment. Furthermore, many injuries may not be immediately visible. You may feel additional or new symptoms, both physical and psychological, weeks or even months after the accident. As a result you may incur additional medical or rehabilitation expenses beyond what you initially anticipated. This is one of the most important reasons to talk to a personal injury lawyer as s/he will advise you to wait until you know the full extent of your injuries. This can also help you to determine the right time to accept a settlement offer for your claim.

Negotiating with Insurance Companies:

Another common reason why people do not hire a personal injury lawyer is because they believe that their insurance company is there to help them. But insurance companies are interested in minimizing payouts so that they can maximize their profit margins. It is important to understand that insurance companies, like many other corporations, respond to business incentives and in the case of a personal injury claim, these incentives are at odds with what the interest of the claimant or plaintiff. For this reason, it is critical that you retain a personal injury lawyer so that you can obtain fair compensation for your losses. It is important to have an experienced personal injury lawyer representing your best interests, who can negotiate strongly with insurance companies on your behalf.

Some people may not hire a lawyer for fear of paying large legal fees. But at Mazin & Associates, PC, Personal Injury Lawyers, we work on a contingency-fee basis. This means that you will not pay for any legal fees unless you win your case. To arrange a free consultation, call (416) 625-2122 or visit our website.

Can A Dashboard Camera Help To Resolve Accident Disputes?

A dashboard camera is a camera that is placed on your wind shield or dashboard and is continuously recording everything that happens while you are driving your car. More advanced versions of the cameras can also record rear views; some are even equipped with infra-red sensors to enable recordings in the dark too. The main purpose of using this type of camera is to record exactly what happened in the event of a car accident.

When your car accident claim evolves into a full-blown dispute, dashboard cameras are becoming a popular way for careful drivers to verify that they were not at fault after an accident. Any video you provide must be of good enough quality to clearly show the third party. A dashboard camera can be a useful tool since it is sometimes difficult to explain or recall exactly what happened during the accident. A dashboard cam will be there to contribute to find out the truth. So, when an accident occurs, it may be easier for you to prove not only that the other person was at fault, but how he or she violated the law.

There are three organizations that would probably benefit the most from such a device being used by consumers: injured individuals, insurers and law enforcement. This is because a dash cam can greatly contribute to the resolution of traffic accidents and claims.

Some of the insurance companies have their own policies whether dashboard camera footage will even be considered, if at all. Some of the major insurance companies have yet to set an official policy regarding how they review and use dashboard camera footage. The insurance company could choose to consider it if they think it would help, but they are not always required to. However, Car Accident Lawyers, Mazin & Associates, PC would know how to evaluate such a video and determine if it can be made admissible. To find out how we can help you after your accident, call us at (416) 625-2122.

Your claim might be strengthened from the dashboard camera footage and might potentially reduce the time that is needed to settle your case. Although dashboard camera footage is not always conclusive evidence of what happened during the accident, it can be very helpful.

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Mazin & Associates PC dedicates itself to achieving maximum settlements in serious personal injury and accident cases. Our areas of practice include car accidents, motorcycle injuries, brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, slip and falls, wrongful death, product liability, long-term disability and medical malpractice.

  • Toronto
  • Tel: (416) 625-2122
  • Toll Free: 1-800-432-HURT (4878)
  • Fax: (416) 250-1238
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  • Toronto, ON M2N 6L4