Page 1

McLeish pantone June 08

6/25/08

2:14 PM

Page 1

The Song Story On Friday, July 26, 2002, at 8:00 p.m., the life of our client, Eugene Song, changed forever. A few days earlier, Eugene Song, a twenty year old university student, flew from Seoul, Korea to Toronto, Canada. After arriving in Canada, she took a road trip to Quebec with some of her friends. On July 26, 2002, Eugene and her group of friends were travelling on Highway 401, on their way back to Toronto. Eugene was a back seat passenger in a rental car being driven by one of her friends. As a result of a number of factors, the driver lost control of the rental car and a horrific crash followed. Eugene was thrown from the rental car and suffered multiple injuries including a spinal cord injury, which left her a paraplegic. Initially Eugene focused her efforts and energy on rehabilitation. She spent five months in the Ottawa Civic Hospital and the Ottawa Rehabilitation Centre before being transferred home. Eugene then spent a further 16 months at rehabilitation hospitals in Seoul, Korea. Since being discharged from the rehabilitation hospitals, Eugene has continued to receive physiotherapy and other therapy on an ongoing basis. Three years after being injured, Eugene decided it was time for her to return to university and complete her goal of obtaining a degree. Eugene successfully returned to school, with the support of her family, and graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Food and Nutrition from Seoul Women’s University.

In the Community Several members of McLeish Orlando LLP participated in the 2nd Annual Personal Injury Bar Charity Hockey Challenge which was held on March 27th, 2008. The event raised funds for the “Shoot For A Cure” campaign for spinal cord research. This past May, McLeish Orlando LLP also participated in the 4th Annual Mix & Mingle hosted by the Ontario Brain Injury Association & Brain Injury Society of Toronto. McLeish Orlando LLP was proud to be a leading sponsor of the St. Michael’s Hospital “Swing into Spring” fundraiser which was held on May 9th, 2008. The event was a great success which raised close to $150,000.00 for further research programs at the St. Michael's Hospital Head Injury Clinic. McLeish Orlando LLP was also proud to sponsor and participate in the Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre “Practical Strategies Conference” which took place on May 29th, 2008. The event was extremely successful with over 230 participants attending the conference and a total of $29,400.00 being raised. One hundred percent of the proceeds raised went to benefit the Traumatic Brain Injury Clinic at the Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre.

Toronto: One Queen Street East, Suite 1620 Toronto ON M5C 2C5 416-366-3311 1-866-685-3311 Barrie: 92 Caplan Avenue, Suite 221 Barrie, ON L4N 0Z7 705-725-9098 www.mcleishorlando.com

4

Two Ontario court decisions have ruled that defence lawyers may not communicate with a Plaintiff’s treating or assessing health professionals before trial, even if the assessments were conducted in the context of a designated assessment centre (DAC). In the recent decision of Song v. Hong in February 2008, Mr. Justice Patrick Moore ruled that lawyers for the Defendants

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Eugene’s positive attitude and drive to succeed landed her a job as a ticketing agent at Korean Airlines, where she has now worked for almost two years. Despite her catastrophic injuries, Eugene has shown an amazing strength of character and spirit. While she continues to adapt to life in a wheelchair, Eugene is an inspiration to others that she meets. Each time she interacts with people in the community, she helps to break down barriers for people with physical disabilities in Korea.

Defence Lawyers Cannot Communicate With Injured Person’s Treatment Providers, Court Rules

1

• Defence Lawyers Cannot Communicate With Injured Person’s Treatment Providers, Court Rules

2

• Using Technology to Streamline the Process • Upcoming Events

3

• Educate and Advocate for Summer Safety

4

• The Song Story • In the Community

could not communicate with an expert witness who had previously treated the Plaintiff. The expert was an occupational therapist who was originally hired by the Plaintiff’s accident benefits insurance company to perform an occupational therapy assessment. The occupational therapist began treating the Plaintiff and provided regular progress reports to the accident benefits insurance company. At trial, the lawyer for the Defendants wrote to the occupational therapist to request a future cost of care report. Justice Moore ruled that the occupational therapist could give evidence about her earlier reports to the accident benefits insurer, but she could not refer to the report that she prepared for the Defendants. Justice Moore also held that defence counsel could not communicate with the occupational therapist before the occupational therapist gave her evidence in court. In another recent decision, Russet v. Bujold, the court refused to allow the lawyers for a Defendant to interview a

doctor who had performed an independent “designated assessment” of the Plaintiff. The judge ruled that when a doctor assesses an individual, he or she is engaged in the “practice of medicine.” This means that the doctor owes a duty of confidentiality to the person assessed and cannot disclose confidential information about an injured person without that person’s consent. Arguably, this decision will also apply to “insurer examiners” since they are engaged in the practice of medicine when they assess an injured person. This means that a defence lawyer in a negligence lawsuit cannot communicate with either a treating health practitioner or an insurer medical examiner without the consent of the injured person. The decisions of courts to restrict the ability of defence lawyers to speak to a Plaintiff’s health professionals without consent is a positive development for injured people who are concerned about a loss of privacy when they see their own doctors or when they are required to attend insurer examinations after suffering serious injuries.


McLeish pantone June 08

6/25/08

2:14 PM

Page 2

Upcoming Events Using Technology to Streamline the Process JULY, 2008

There are several major technological tools that we have implemented at the firm. The first was the development of the Primafact software. We had investigated a number of different types of document management systems and found that each one of them had strengths, but was lacking in one way or another. In response, our computer consultants, Nick Gorham and Karim Jinnah, undertook to create a document management system that was uniquely designed to meet the challenges of personal injury litigation.

AUGUST, 2008 •

Primafact With Primafact, all documents received by our office are scanned into a central database so they can be accessed “online” simultaneously by everyone working on the case. This is particularly important during file review meetings when it is necessary for 5 or 6 team members to be able to view the same document at the same time. Once the documents have been scanned, they are stored in a paper file, but are rarely looked at again. The scanned documents are organized in a binder view so it can easily be determined what documents have been received. It is important not to underestimate the convenience of having all of your documents available electronically. No longer do our lawyers travel to discoveries with a pull cart and banker’s boxes in tow. The entire file is simply downloaded onto a laptop. Having the documents available in electronic form also means that every file in the office is always accessible, so long as an internet connection is available. Time Matters

4th & 5th - Atlantic Provinces Trial Lawyers Association Med School: Excellence through Understanding, Delta Halifax, Halifax, NS John McLeish is giving the keynote address and is presenting on “The Defence Medical Expert: Cross Examination Techniques”.

19th - 2008 Annual Senior Citizens of Ontario Convention, Holiday Inn and Conference Center, Burlington Pat Brown is presenting on “Elder Abuse and Auto Insurance”.

OCTOBER, 2008 •

30th & 31st - Ontario Trial Lawyers Association: 2008 Fall Conference, The Westin Prince Hotel, Toronto John McLeish, Pat Brown and Dale Orlando are chairing this conference on “The Road to Trial - Successful Trial Strategies”.

10th & 21st - The Law Society of Upper Canada, CLE: The Oatley-McLeish Guide to Proof of Personal Injury Damages: Litigating Cases arising from Motor Vehicle Collisions, Donald Lamont Learning Centre, Toronto John McLeish is co-chairing and presenting at this program.

The following statistics, made available by Safe Kids Canada, the national injury prevention program of The • Check your child before allowing him/her to play on a Hospital for Sick Children, clearly illustrate the need for playground. Look for drawstrings or clothing that injury prevention campaigns. may get caught or cause strangulation. • Child pedestrian incidents are a leading cause of injury-related death for Canadian children under the age of 14. • Most youth-related pedestrian incidents occur on residential streets. • A child hit by a car travelling at 50 km/h, has an 80 percent chance of being killed. • A child hit by a car travelling at 30 km/h, has a 5 percent chance of being killed. • Each year between 20,000 and 30,000 Canadian children are injured on playgrounds.

dates, correspondence, meetings, limitations, documents etc. Citrix

Citrix Server is a tool that allows for remote access to the office. This allows our lawyers and staff to connect easily and securely to our office computer systems from anywhere Time Matters allows us to organize and share information in the world as long as there is internet access. This means firm-wide, both in and out of the office. For example, Time that key programs, such as Time Matters, PCLaw, Word and Matters provides firm wide centralized calendars, allowing Primafact can be made available to our team just as if they assistants to manage schedules for lawyers and avoid were sitting at their own desks in the office no matter where conflicts when booking meetings. in the world they may be.

2

Each year as the seasons change and the warm weather starts, children and families take to parks and other recreational spaces to play. Alongside the sights and sounds of children at play, are the sights and sounds of awareness campaigns promoting summer safety and injury prevention.

NOVEMBER, 2008

A second technological tool that we have implemented is a Practice Management software application from Lexis Nexis called Time Matters.

Other useful features provide us with centralized management of the firm’s contacts, document production and document generation. In Time Matters, all information is presented from a client perspective. This makes it easy to track all critical information about a file, such as parties, key

Educate and Advocate for Summer Safety

We are in the process of adding two new technological tools – the latest generation of voice recognition software and a digital dictation system. It is hoped that these two new tools will add to the performance and convenience that we have realized with the technology already in use.

• Inspect the playground area. Look for a deep, soft surface such as sand, wood chips or soft rubber mat. Depth of surface should be between 6 to 12 inches. Look for sturdy handrails, barriers and railings. Check for hazardous objects. Check for spaces where your child’s head or neck might get stuck. • Teach playground safety: • Slide down feet first. • Don't go up the slide ladder until the other person has gone down the slide. • Hold on to railings.

• Drowning is the second leading cause of injuryrelated death for Canadian children. Every year almost 60 children drown.

• Keep away from moving swings and the bottom of slides.

• Almost half of all child drownings happen in swimming pools.

These tips are intended to prevent injuries that are predictable and preventable. As Shawna DiFilippo, Program Coordinator with Safe Kids Canada, says:

Summer is a fun time that can be packed with activities but it is also a time to be wary of preventable injuries and conditions. Safe Kids Canada encourages the following prevention strategies: • Teach children to stop at driveways, alleys and areas without curbs and to never run out onto the street.

…Unfortunately, many people think of childhood unintentional injuries as unpredictable "accidents". But most injuries are preventable through a combination of education, legislation and enforcement, and the design of safer environments. Following some simple safety precautions can help keep children participating in activities they love for many summers to come!

• Ensure active supervision of children when they are near or in the water, proper pool fencing, the use of lifejackets, and adult training in first aid and CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation), all of which can McLeish Orlando LLP encourages everyone to do their part in helping keep children safe by educating and prevent drowning. advocating for summer safety.

3


McLeish pantone June 08

6/25/08

2:14 PM

Page 1

The Song Story On Friday, July 26, 2002, at 8:00 p.m., the life of our client, Eugene Song, changed forever. A few days earlier, Eugene Song, a twenty year old university student, flew from Seoul, Korea to Toronto, Canada. After arriving in Canada, she took a road trip to Quebec with some of her friends. On July 26, 2002, Eugene and her group of friends were travelling on Highway 401, on their way back to Toronto. Eugene was a back seat passenger in a rental car being driven by one of her friends. As a result of a number of factors, the driver lost control of the rental car and a horrific crash followed. Eugene was thrown from the rental car and suffered multiple injuries including a spinal cord injury, which left her a paraplegic. Initially Eugene focused her efforts and energy on rehabilitation. She spent five months in the Ottawa Civic Hospital and the Ottawa Rehabilitation Centre before being transferred home. Eugene then spent a further 16 months at rehabilitation hospitals in Seoul, Korea. Since being discharged from the rehabilitation hospitals, Eugene has continued to receive physiotherapy and other therapy on an ongoing basis. Three years after being injured, Eugene decided it was time for her to return to university and complete her goal of obtaining a degree. Eugene successfully returned to school, with the support of her family, and graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Food and Nutrition from Seoul Women’s University.

In the Community Several members of McLeish Orlando LLP participated in the 2nd Annual Personal Injury Bar Charity Hockey Challenge which was held on March 27th, 2008. The event raised funds for the “Shoot For A Cure” campaign for spinal cord research. This past May, McLeish Orlando LLP also participated in the 4th Annual Mix & Mingle hosted by the Ontario Brain Injury Association & Brain Injury Society of Toronto. McLeish Orlando LLP was proud to be a leading sponsor of the St. Michael’s Hospital “Swing into Spring” fundraiser which was held on May 9th, 2008. The event was a great success which raised close to $150,000.00 for further research programs at the St. Michael's Hospital Head Injury Clinic. McLeish Orlando LLP was also proud to sponsor and participate in the Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre “Practical Strategies Conference” which took place on May 29th, 2008. The event was extremely successful with over 230 participants attending the conference and a total of $29,400.00 being raised. One hundred percent of the proceeds raised went to benefit the Traumatic Brain Injury Clinic at the Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre.

Toronto: One Queen Street East, Suite 1620 Toronto ON M5C 2C5 416-366-3311 1-866-685-3311 Barrie: 92 Caplan Avenue, Suite 221 Barrie, ON L4N 0Z7 705-725-9098 www.mcleishorlando.com

4

Two Ontario court decisions have ruled that defence lawyers may not communicate with a Plaintiff’s treating or assessing health professionals before trial, even if the assessments were conducted in the context of a designated assessment centre (DAC). In the recent decision of Song v. Hong in February 2008, Mr. Justice Patrick Moore ruled that lawyers for the Defendants

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Eugene’s positive attitude and drive to succeed landed her a job as a ticketing agent at Korean Airlines, where she has now worked for almost two years. Despite her catastrophic injuries, Eugene has shown an amazing strength of character and spirit. While she continues to adapt to life in a wheelchair, Eugene is an inspiration to others that she meets. Each time she interacts with people in the community, she helps to break down barriers for people with physical disabilities in Korea.

Defence Lawyers Cannot Communicate With Injured Person’s Treatment Providers, Court Rules

1

• Defence Lawyers Cannot Communicate With Injured Person’s Treatment Providers, Court Rules

2

• Using Technology to Streamline the Process • Upcoming Events

3

• Educate and Advocate for Summer Safety

4

• The Song Story • In the Community

could not communicate with an expert witness who had previously treated the Plaintiff. The expert was an occupational therapist who was originally hired by the Plaintiff’s accident benefits insurance company to perform an occupational therapy assessment. The occupational therapist began treating the Plaintiff and provided regular progress reports to the accident benefits insurance company. At trial, the lawyer for the Defendants wrote to the occupational therapist to request a future cost of care report. Justice Moore ruled that the occupational therapist could give evidence about her earlier reports to the accident benefits insurer, but she could not refer to the report that she prepared for the Defendants. Justice Moore also held that defence counsel could not communicate with the occupational therapist before the occupational therapist gave her evidence in court. In another recent decision, Russet v. Bujold, the court refused to allow the lawyers for a Defendant to interview a

doctor who had performed an independent “designated assessment” of the Plaintiff. The judge ruled that when a doctor assesses an individual, he or she is engaged in the “practice of medicine.” This means that the doctor owes a duty of confidentiality to the person assessed and cannot disclose confidential information about an injured person without that person’s consent. Arguably, this decision will also apply to “insurer examiners” since they are engaged in the practice of medicine when they assess an injured person. This means that a defence lawyer in a negligence lawsuit cannot communicate with either a treating health practitioner or an insurer medical examiner without the consent of the injured person. The decisions of courts to restrict the ability of defence lawyers to speak to a Plaintiff’s health professionals without consent is a positive development for injured people who are concerned about a loss of privacy when they see their own doctors or when they are required to attend insurer examinations after suffering serious injuries.


McLeish pantone June 08

6/25/08

2:14 PM

Page 2

Upcoming Events Using Technology to Streamline the Process JULY, 2008

There are several major technological tools that we have implemented at the firm. The first was the development of the Primafact software. We had investigated a number of different types of document management systems and found that each one of them had strengths, but was lacking in one way or another. In response, our computer consultants, Nick Gorham and Karim Jinnah, undertook to create a document management system that was uniquely designed to meet the challenges of personal injury litigation.

AUGUST, 2008 •

Primafact With Primafact, all documents received by our office are scanned into a central database so they can be accessed “online” simultaneously by everyone working on the case. This is particularly important during file review meetings when it is necessary for 5 or 6 team members to be able to view the same document at the same time. Once the documents have been scanned, they are stored in a paper file, but are rarely looked at again. The scanned documents are organized in a binder view so it can easily be determined what documents have been received. It is important not to underestimate the convenience of having all of your documents available electronically. No longer do our lawyers travel to discoveries with a pull cart and banker’s boxes in tow. The entire file is simply downloaded onto a laptop. Having the documents available in electronic form also means that every file in the office is always accessible, so long as an internet connection is available. Time Matters

4th & 5th - Atlantic Provinces Trial Lawyers Association Med School: Excellence through Understanding, Delta Halifax, Halifax, NS John McLeish is giving the keynote address and is presenting on “The Defence Medical Expert: Cross Examination Techniques”.

19th - 2008 Annual Senior Citizens of Ontario Convention, Holiday Inn and Conference Center, Burlington Pat Brown is presenting on “Elder Abuse and Auto Insurance”.

OCTOBER, 2008 •

30th & 31st - Ontario Trial Lawyers Association: 2008 Fall Conference, The Westin Prince Hotel, Toronto John McLeish, Pat Brown and Dale Orlando are chairing this conference on “The Road to Trial - Successful Trial Strategies”.

10th & 21st - The Law Society of Upper Canada, CLE: The Oatley-McLeish Guide to Proof of Personal Injury Damages: Litigating Cases arising from Motor Vehicle Collisions, Donald Lamont Learning Centre, Toronto John McLeish is co-chairing and presenting at this program.

The following statistics, made available by Safe Kids Canada, the national injury prevention program of The • Check your child before allowing him/her to play on a Hospital for Sick Children, clearly illustrate the need for playground. Look for drawstrings or clothing that injury prevention campaigns. may get caught or cause strangulation. • Child pedestrian incidents are a leading cause of injury-related death for Canadian children under the age of 14. • Most youth-related pedestrian incidents occur on residential streets. • A child hit by a car travelling at 50 km/h, has an 80 percent chance of being killed. • A child hit by a car travelling at 30 km/h, has a 5 percent chance of being killed. • Each year between 20,000 and 30,000 Canadian children are injured on playgrounds.

dates, correspondence, meetings, limitations, documents etc. Citrix

Citrix Server is a tool that allows for remote access to the office. This allows our lawyers and staff to connect easily and securely to our office computer systems from anywhere Time Matters allows us to organize and share information in the world as long as there is internet access. This means firm-wide, both in and out of the office. For example, Time that key programs, such as Time Matters, PCLaw, Word and Matters provides firm wide centralized calendars, allowing Primafact can be made available to our team just as if they assistants to manage schedules for lawyers and avoid were sitting at their own desks in the office no matter where conflicts when booking meetings. in the world they may be.

2

Each year as the seasons change and the warm weather starts, children and families take to parks and other recreational spaces to play. Alongside the sights and sounds of children at play, are the sights and sounds of awareness campaigns promoting summer safety and injury prevention.

NOVEMBER, 2008

A second technological tool that we have implemented is a Practice Management software application from Lexis Nexis called Time Matters.

Other useful features provide us with centralized management of the firm’s contacts, document production and document generation. In Time Matters, all information is presented from a client perspective. This makes it easy to track all critical information about a file, such as parties, key

Educate and Advocate for Summer Safety

We are in the process of adding two new technological tools – the latest generation of voice recognition software and a digital dictation system. It is hoped that these two new tools will add to the performance and convenience that we have realized with the technology already in use.

• Inspect the playground area. Look for a deep, soft surface such as sand, wood chips or soft rubber mat. Depth of surface should be between 6 to 12 inches. Look for sturdy handrails, barriers and railings. Check for hazardous objects. Check for spaces where your child’s head or neck might get stuck. • Teach playground safety: • Slide down feet first. • Don't go up the slide ladder until the other person has gone down the slide. • Hold on to railings.

• Drowning is the second leading cause of injuryrelated death for Canadian children. Every year almost 60 children drown.

• Keep away from moving swings and the bottom of slides.

• Almost half of all child drownings happen in swimming pools.

These tips are intended to prevent injuries that are predictable and preventable. As Shawna DiFilippo, Program Coordinator with Safe Kids Canada, says:

Summer is a fun time that can be packed with activities but it is also a time to be wary of preventable injuries and conditions. Safe Kids Canada encourages the following prevention strategies: • Teach children to stop at driveways, alleys and areas without curbs and to never run out onto the street.

…Unfortunately, many people think of childhood unintentional injuries as unpredictable "accidents". But most injuries are preventable through a combination of education, legislation and enforcement, and the design of safer environments. Following some simple safety precautions can help keep children participating in activities they love for many summers to come!

• Ensure active supervision of children when they are near or in the water, proper pool fencing, the use of lifejackets, and adult training in first aid and CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation), all of which can McLeish Orlando LLP encourages everyone to do their part in helping keep children safe by educating and prevent drowning. advocating for summer safety.

3

The Fine Print - June 2008  

The Fine Print, June 2008.

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