Why we “stay in our lane” when it comes to advertising

You’re in traffic, stuck between a pickup truck in front of you and a city bus behind.

As you tap your steering wheel in annoyance, you think about the five-foot-wide ad you saw plastered across the side of the bus earlier, extolling the skills of a personal injury lawyer who specializes in car accidents.

The pickup takes off, stops suddenly– and you are rear ended by the bus.

Who are you going to call?

Your instinct might be to take advantage of the massive ad on the side of the bus. After all, it’s right there, and the guy deals with this kind of stuff, right?

Maybe…but the bigger question is this: How is a client supposed to view the relationship between a lawyer who advertises on the city-owned bus system, when that lawyer then must sue the entity that owns it? Are they in business together or truly at arm’s length?

Over the past few years, our lawyers have represented clients suing OC Transpo and the City of Ottawa for damages. First, it was the deeply traumatic Barrhaven Via Rail/OC Transpo incident and then the deadly Westboro Transit station OC Transpo crash. In addition, have we represented clients in slip and fall claims against the City of Ottawa.

For our clients, there is no doubt that we are representing their best interests.

We do not promote our firm’s services on city-owned buses or any other city-owned property, for that matter. Whether it is a bus-vehicle accident or a slip-and-fall claim in front of City Hall, we want our clients to be confident that there is no blurring of the line business advertising and their best interests.

For us, that’s not just a matter of good business. It’s about honouring the trust our clients put in us.

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    Auger Hollingsworth in the Community: Weekend Getaway in Chelsea Raffle

    Auger Hollingsworth is proud to sponsor the Perley Rideau Veterans’ Health Centre Foundation’s “Exclusive Luxury Weekend Raffle.” The raffle offers you a chance to win a relaxing, exclusive, luxurious weekend getaway for you and seven girlfriends in Chelsea, Quebec, during Gatineau Park’s stunning fall colour change. The raffle winner will enjoy two nights at the Pepper Pod (October 15-17, 2021). This charming cabin operates traditionally as a retreat centre for women Veterans and hosts eight double beds in a cozy pyjama-party type bedroom. You will start your girls’ weekend in style and luxury by chauffeured limo to, from and for all scheduled activities around your destination. Celebrate with bubbly, mouth-watering treats and decadent snacks all through the weekend, with a special Friday lunch prepared by Chef Yannick La Salle of Les Fougeres. Other highlights include a celebrity fireside chat, a guided hike through Gatineau Park, and Spa Nordik passes.

    The tickets are on sale online for $100 until September 15 at 3:00 pm. The Perley and Rideau Veterans’ Health Centre is Ontario’s largest and most progressive long-term care home. It is also an innovative Seniors Village with 139 independent-living apartments and a 12-bed Guest House providing respite care. The Perley Rideau serves as a hub for all seniors and mainly benefits those isolated or socially frail. Residents of both the Health Centre and the apartments enjoy ready access to a full range of clinical and therapeutic services, along with social and recreational activities and programs. By supporting the Foundation, you will help the Perley Rideau ensure that excellent resident care, comfort, safety and services are always accessible for the 450 residents, including 250 veterans who call the Perley Rideau home. Donors fund everything from essential equipment to the therapeutic music program and art studios. With your support, the Perley Rideau continues to be a thriving Ottawa Health Centre that delivers top-quality care in a personalized and compassionate manner.

      100% Free Case Review
      Speak with a lawyer directly.
      Learn what steps you can take next.
      1-888-574-4529
      You do not need any documents or medical records on hand for this call.
      No fee, and no commitment.

      Case Type*

      Did you suffer any physical, psychological, or cognitive injuries?*

      Did your accident occur in Ontario?*

      This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google
      Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

      By submitting this form, you agree to receive follow-up communications pertaining to your inquiry, and marketing emails. Information submitted will be transmitted to a law firm. This communication is intended to be an attorney-client communication for purposes of evaluating your claim and will be kept confidential by the law firm. The communication does not create an attorney-client relationship and no relationship is formed until a fee agreement is signed by you and the law firm. Our privacy policy can be found here.



      Tax Credits Grants to Help With Your Renovation

      After an injury, many of our clients require modifications to their houses to make them more accessible. These modifications are essential for maintaining our clients’ to maintain their lifestyles and independence. However, these home renovations can be costly. The following article, reprinted by permission from Kyla Cullain of BuildAble.ca, provides an excellent summary of some tax credits and grants offered by the government, which can help you save money while making your home more accessible.

      =====================================================

      Making our homes safe and accessible is incredibly important in maintaining our independence, our health and well-being. Unfortunately, there are still costs associated with transforming our homes into safe spaces.  We’ve compiled a small list below of available tax credits that can help ease some of the expenses.

      Home Accessibility Tax Credit (HATC)

      This is a federal tax credit for those renovating their home to make it safe and accessible.

      The Home Accessibility Tax Credit (HATC) is for eligible individuals with disabilities (qualified for the disability tax credit) and/or for individuals who are 65 years of age or older at the end of the year.   The HATC applies to total qualifying expenses up to $10,000 per year, resulting in a maximum tax credit of $1,500 ($10,000 x 15%).

      The HATC is claimed when filing your annual tax return – so make sure you hang on to all of your receipts/documentation from BuildAble to receive your return!

      A qualifying renovation is a renovation or alteration that is of an enduring nature and is integral to the eligible dwelling (including the land that forms part of the eligible dwelling). Examples that should qualify:

      • Grab bars and safety rails
      • Replacing a bathtub with a roll-in shower, accessible shower or tub cuts
      • Step-in or walk-in bathtub
      • Wheelchair lifts
      • Non-slip flooring or anti-slip treatments
      • Switching to lever style handles or faucets
      • Widening your doorways
      • Labour costs from professionals
      • Permits for construction, and building plans
      • Building materials and fixtures
      • Outdoor or indoor ramps
      • Lowering kitchen or bathroom cabinets so the person can use them
      • Equipment rentals and more

       

      Click here to read more about the HATC from the Government of Canada, and for further information on eligibility, qualifying renovations and filing.

      Medical Expense Tax Credit (METC)

      You may have an eligible renovation that also qualifies as a medical expense. If so, you can claim both the federal Medical Expense Tax Credit (METC) AND the home accessibility tax credit (HATC). While these costs to renovate or alter a home to accommodate the use of a wheelchair may qualify as medical expenses,  types of expenses related to other types of impairment may also qualify. In all cases, keep receipts and any other related documents to support your claim. Read more here.

       

      The Seniors’ Home Safety Tax Credit (Ontario) – 2021 ONLY

      The Seniors’ Home Safety Tax Credit will help you make your home safer and more accessible, helping you stay in your home longer. This is eligible for:

      • seniors who are 65 by the end of 2021
      • people who live with senior relatives

      The Seniors’ Home Safety Tax Credit is worth 25% of up to $10,000 in eligible expenses for a senior’s principal residence in Ontario. The maximum credit is $2,500.

      You can claim the credit on your 2021 Income Tax and Benefit Return.

      https://www.ontario.ca/page/seniors-home-safety-tax-credit

      Note: If you are 65 years or older, you may be able to claim the (1) HATC, the (2) METC; and the (3) Seniors’ Home Safety Tax Credit for the same renovation or accessibility modifications!  We encourage you to reach out to your financial planner and/or accountant to discuss.

       

      The Disability Tax Credit (DTC)

      The disability tax credit (DTC) is a non-refundable tax credit that helps persons with disabilities or their supporting persons reduce the amount of income tax they may have to pay. An individual may claim the disability amount once they are eligible for the DTC. This amount includes a supplement for persons under 18 years of age at the end of the year.

      The purpose of the DTC is to provide for greater tax equity by allowing some relief for disability costs, since these are unavoidable additional expenses that other taxpayers don’t have to face.

      Note: If you are eligible for the DTC, you may be able to claim both the (1) HATC, AND the (2) METC for the same renovation or accessibility modifications!

      We encourage you to reach out to your financial planner and/or accountant to discuss.

       

      Ontario Assistive Device Program

      While this isn’t applicable to renovations – it’s important to be aware of the Assistive Devices Program, which provides consumer centered support and funding to Ontario residents who have long-term physical disabilities and to provide access to personalized assistive devices appropriate for the individual’s basic needs.

      Devices covered by the program are intended to enable people with physical disabilities to increase their independence through access to assistive devices responsive to their individual needs. Initial access is often through a medical specialist or general practitioner who provides a diagnosis. In most device categories, an authorizer assesses the specific needs of the person and prescribes appropriate equipment or supplies.

       

      Easter Seals

      Easter Seals Ontario provides programs and services to children and youth with physical disabilities across Ontario to help them achieve greater independence, accessibility and integration.

       

      March of Dimes

      Funded by the government of Ontario, the Home and Vehicle Modification® Program helps people living in Ontario pay for crucial renovations and retrofits. This includes anything from widening doorways for a wheelchair to modifying a van so someone who uses an assistive device can drive it. The goal is to keep people at home and in their communities.

      Find out more about the application process, and whether you’re eligible, here to go to the HVMP – How to Apply page.

      March of Dimes Canada Assistive Devices Program assists adults with physical disabilities who are in financial need to purchase assistive devices that increase their mobility and functional independence.

       

      Other potential savings or rebates (for accessible or non-accessible renovations):

       

      GST/HST New Housing Rebate

      The GST/HST new housing rebate allows an individual to recover some of the GST or the federal part of the HST paid for a new or substantially renovated house that is for use as the individual’s, or their relation’s, primary place of residence, when all of the other conditions are met.

       

      Substantial Renovations and the GST/HST New Housing Rebate

      The new housing rebate applies to the purchase, construction or substantial renovation of a residential complex. Even though the rebate is called the “new” housing rebate, individuals who substantially renovate their existing homes may be eligible to claim it (in addition to individuals who construct new homes or purchase them from builders).

       

      Home Efficiency Rebate

      The Home Efficiency Rebate can help lower your energy costs and make it more comfortable year-round. Get up to $5,000 in rebates for insulation, air sealing, new windows/doors, water heaters, boilers, furnaces and home energy assessments.

        100% Free Case Review
        Speak with a lawyer directly.
        Learn what steps you can take next.
        1-888-574-4529
        You do not need any documents or medical records on hand for this call.
        No fee, and no commitment.

        Case Type*

        Did you suffer any physical, psychological, or cognitive injuries?*

        Did your accident occur in Ontario?*

        This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google
        Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

        By submitting this form, you agree to receive follow-up communications pertaining to your inquiry, and marketing emails. Information submitted will be transmitted to a law firm. This communication is intended to be an attorney-client communication for purposes of evaluating your claim and will be kept confidential by the law firm. The communication does not create an attorney-client relationship and no relationship is formed until a fee agreement is signed by you and the law firm. Our privacy policy can be found here.



        10 Things You Can Send Your Personal Injury Lawyer Right Now to Increase the Value of Your Case

        Following an injury, there are probably a lot of questions going through your head. Contacting the lawyers of Auger Hollingsworth can help you get some peace of mind. One of the first things your lawyer will likely ask to help build your case is to provide all the documentation you have regarding the accident. This crucial step allows us to paint a complete picture and ensures that you receive the most money possible for your injuries. Here are some quick and easy things you can send to your lawyer right now to help them get started on your case:

        1. Photos of the accident scene. This includes any damaged property, road conditions, street signs and any other pictures you took at the accident scene.
        2. Names and contact information of any witnesses to the incident, including the person who drove you home from the scene.
        3. Photos of any physical signs of your injury, however small. This includes all, cuts, bumps or bruises resulting from your injury.
        4. Photos of you in the 18 months before the accident doing activities.
        5. Photos (copies) of any awards, certificates, trophies, medals, letters of thanks relating to accomplishments before the accident.
        6. Names of anyone who can describe the impact of the accident on your activities, work, parenting, housekeeping.
        7. Evidence of your planned retirement date such as documents to or from your financial planner or accountant.
        8. Cell / text message records that establish you were not using your phone at the time of the incident
        9. Receipts for any expenses incurred because of the incident. This includes any prescriptions, medical, transportation or anything else you had to pay out of pocket because of your injury.
        10. Any job applications (or competitions entered) made in the 3 years before the incident that support a claim that you were looking for a job / career enhancement.

          100% Free Case Review
          Speak with a lawyer directly.
          Learn what steps you can take next.
          1-888-574-4529
          You do not need any documents or medical records on hand for this call.
          No fee, and no commitment.

          Case Type*

          Did you suffer any physical, psychological, or cognitive injuries?*

          Did your accident occur in Ontario?*

          This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google
          Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

          By submitting this form, you agree to receive follow-up communications pertaining to your inquiry, and marketing emails. Information submitted will be transmitted to a law firm. This communication is intended to be an attorney-client communication for purposes of evaluating your claim and will be kept confidential by the law firm. The communication does not create an attorney-client relationship and no relationship is formed until a fee agreement is signed by you and the law firm. Our privacy policy can be found here.


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          New Rules for Contingency Fees

          Most people who hire personal injury lawyers choose to pay a percentage of the settlement to the law firm rather than paying an hourly rate. This is known as a contingency fee. Your contract with the law firm is called a contingency fee agreement.

          Starting July 1, 2021, the Law Society of Ontario has required all law firms offering contingency fees to use a standard form agreement. In compliance with this requirement, Auger Hollingsworth has adopted the Law Society’s contingency agreement.

          Under the requirements law firms must now:

          -disclose the maximum contingency fee percentage charged in certain circumstances

          -provide potential clients with the standard form consumer guide entitled Contingency Fees: What you need to know

          -provide certain fee-related reporting to clients on completion of the agreement.

          Our fees as set out in the contingency fee agreement are as follows:

          Tort Case - Claim Against the At Fault Driver 
          IFTHEN
          We settle your tort case before the examination for discovery. The fee will be 25% + HST
          We settle your tort case after the examination for discovery but before the pretrial. The fee will be 28% + HST
          We settle your tort case after pretrial but before commencement of trial.The fee will be 30% + HST
          We settle or win your tort case after the commencement of trial.The fee will be 33% + HST

           

          Accident Benefit Claim 
          IFTHEN
          We settle your accident benefit claim without an arbitration.The fee will be 25% + HST
          The court or License Appeal Tribunal hears your case and orders that you receive an award or the case settles during the LAT arbitration. The fee will be 33% + HST

           

          Personal Injury (Non-MVA) Including Slip and Fall, Trip and Fall and Other Injuries 
          IFTHEN
          We settle your tort case before the examination for discovery. The fee will be 25% + HST
          We settle your tort case after the examination for discovery but before the pretrial. The fee will be 28% + HST
          We settle your case after pretrial but before commencement of trial.The fee will be 30% + HST
          We settle or win your tort after the commencement of trial.The fee will be 33% + HST

           

          Long Term Disability 
          IFTHEN
          We settle your case before the mediation or examination for discovery. The fee will be 25% + HST
          We settle your case after the examination for discovery or mediation but before the pretrial. The fee will be 28% + HST
          We settle your case after pretrial but before commencement of trial.The fee will be 30% + HST
          We settle or win your case after the commencement of trial.The fee will be 33% + HST

          To find our more about Contingency Fee Agreements, read the Law Society of Ontario’s Consumer Guide to Contingency Fees.

          The consumer guide asks some important questions for potential clients looking for the right firm to meet you needs.  Auger Hollingsworth’s answers to these important questions are here.

            100% Free Case Review
            Speak with a lawyer directly.
            Learn what steps you can take next.
            1-888-574-4529
            You do not need any documents or medical records on hand for this call.
            No fee, and no commitment.

            Case Type*

            Did you suffer any physical, psychological, or cognitive injuries?*

            Did your accident occur in Ontario?*

            This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google
            Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

            By submitting this form, you agree to receive follow-up communications pertaining to your inquiry, and marketing emails. Information submitted will be transmitted to a law firm. This communication is intended to be an attorney-client communication for purposes of evaluating your claim and will be kept confidential by the law firm. The communication does not create an attorney-client relationship and no relationship is formed until a fee agreement is signed by you and the law firm. Our privacy policy can be found here.



            Meet Our Star Associate Lawyer: Calla Rose

            Associate lawyer, Calla Rose, is a shining example of a woman who embraces the legal profession with determination and zeal. In 2019, while running her busy practice, she went on maternity leave and completed her LLM with top marks during that period. Upon returning to her practice – with no cases at hand – she rebuilt her clientele, negotiated settlements for more than 50 clients and skillfully handled more than 150 files in the pandemic while raising a toddler with limited childcare support. Her outstanding track record to date includes the successful conclusion of several catastrophic claims cases and complex liability cases. Most notably, she advocated for a client’s determination of Catastrophic Impairment (CAT) by her Accident Benefits provider for injuries initially declared minor by her insurer. At the outset of this case, she was a first-year lawyer and, over several years, built the case and secured the funds necessary to fund the client’s recovery.

            From volunteering at a local community newspaper and fundraising for the Ottawa Foodbank to volunteering with the Ottawa Sharing and Caring Exchange, Calla Rose has demonstrated the depth of her character with generosity to Ottawa, where she is on the Traffic and Safety Committee for her community association. Her volunteerism spans several key areas of need – food security being at the forefront – but she has also volunteered to help nascent lawyers as a judge in the popular CCLA Law Day for elementary students. She has volunteered and worked pro bono for Reach Canada and contributed countless hours to Ottawa Lawyers Feed the Hungry. Overseas, Calla has also raised money for a women’s shelter in Iceland through a marathon run.

            A successful personal injury law practice is based not only on expertise but also on clients’ well-being and satisfaction. Calla takes this approach with grace and ease, building client trust and security through a highly skilled approach to interpersonal communication. She involves clients in every step of the case process, encourages queries and offers them insight and teachable moments throughout. Her approach also involves an admirable level of creative thinking about presenting and strengthening a client’s case.

              100% Free Case Review
              Speak with a lawyer directly.
              Learn what steps you can take next.
              1-888-574-4529
              You do not need any documents or medical records on hand for this call.
              No fee, and no commitment.

              Case Type*

              Did you suffer any physical, psychological, or cognitive injuries?*

              Did your accident occur in Ontario?*

              This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google
              Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

              By submitting this form, you agree to receive follow-up communications pertaining to your inquiry, and marketing emails. Information submitted will be transmitted to a law firm. This communication is intended to be an attorney-client communication for purposes of evaluating your claim and will be kept confidential by the law firm. The communication does not create an attorney-client relationship and no relationship is formed until a fee agreement is signed by you and the law firm. Our privacy policy can be found here.