Were you in an accident Outside of Ontario and are you confused about the steps to take?
If you are injured outside of the province in which you reside, you may be confused as to where your case should be filed. Usually, Ontario courts will consider each situation on a case by case basis, depending on the location of the accident, where the victim lives, where the opposing party lives, the severity of injuries, location of witnesses, location of treatment providers, the specific laws of the province, and if filing the lawsuit in a certain location would be prejudicial to the other parties involved.
If you do become injured and undergo treatment out of province, usually the remaining treatment and rehabilitation would continue in your home town to allow for the resumption of your normal life. You would also be making claims through your own Ontario no-fault benefit insurers.
In the case Club Resorts Ltd. v. Van Breda, “presumptive connecting factors” were established that must link the accident to the province. These factors include: whether the defendant was a resident of the province, whether the defendant carries on business in the province, whether the wrongful act was committed in the province, whether a contract connected with the incident was made in the province, or whether damages were accrued in the province. However, even if a connection is made to Ontario, the court is allowed to decline to exercise its jurisdiction over a claim, if the court in another jurisdiction is more suitable or convenient.
Other items to consider:
Depending on where the accident occurs, insurance laws may be different and drivers in other states may only be required to possess minimal auto insurance coverage, which could negatively impact your claim. It is important to consider purchasing out of province insurance for yourself if you do not already have it.
The limitation period is the time frame by which your claim must be commenced. Although in Ontario, this is two years from the date your injuries were discovered, other jurisdictions may have shorter limitation periods. It is important to seek legal advice promptly in order to determine the limitation period.