What is the deadline for filing a lawsuit in Québec?
Prescription or the Statute of Limitations to institute a lawsuit for medical malpractice or any bodily injury is:
three (3) years from the day the injury occurred, or
three (3) years from the day the injury becomes evident.
Example: we successfully sued a doctor who left a sponge in a woman’s abdomen but s he only found out about it when a doctor ordered an X-ray for back pain five years after the surgery.
It is extremely important to understand that in law this is a strict deadline.
Consequently, if you believe you have a case, contact a lawyer experienced in personal injuries cases immediately!
What professional fees will I be charged?
Your initial phone call to our firm is free of charge.
The first in-person consultation at our office is also free of charge.
Our professional fees are billed at the end of the case on a percentage of the amount we recover (called contingency fees) in an out-of-court settlement or as a result of a trial. We therefore assume a large risk in any lawsuit we choose to accept. You can be sure that if we decide to represent you it is because we believe strongly in the success of your lawsuit.
Do not let your financial situation be the reason why you decide not to seek legal counsel!
How long will the process take?
From the moment the lawsuit is filed, each case is vigorously pursued with the intent of proceeding to trial, if necessary. A case that goes to trial may take 2 to 3 years to come to full completion. However, many of our cases settle out of court within a reasonable delay.
What does filing a lawsuit entail?
Filing a lawsuit is a multiple stage process:
Investigatory stage: first, all relevant medical records must be comprehensively and meticulously reviewed. We then consult the appropriate medical specialists and sub-specialists from the vast team of experts we have assembled over the years to determine whether or not the facts of your case constitute negligence in law.
Litigation stage: If we decide to file a lawsuit you will become the plaintiff in the lawsuit. As your legal representative we will file into court a written complaint outlining the facts and allegations of fault. The defendant is required to provide a written reply stating his or her defense. Shortly thereafter, the parties to the lawsuit will be questioned by the opposing attorneys in the presence of a stenographer.
From the outset, an important part of the litigation process is building the proof to support a winning case. This includes finding the best experts to provide written reports in support of the fault and description of damages. Frequently, our firm is successful in settling cases out of court at this stage.
Trial stage: In the event that the case goes to trial, the judge decides factual as well as legal questions, and makes the final judgment.
What do I need to do if I intend to file a lawsuit?
If you are thinking of filing a lawsuit, it is vital that you collect and keep photos, emails, text messages, copies of bills for medical expenses, such as equipment, medication, nursing care and any other information that you think may be relevant to proving your case.
It is very important that once we decide to work together, you keep us up to date on the progress of your treatment and any changes. Your claim is dependent upon your personal situation and therefore may need to be amended in accordance with new developments.
Annette Lefebvre Avocats considers our clients an important part of the team and your input and questions are always valued.
I have been in a Motor Vehicle Accident. Can I still file a lawsuit?
Under Quebec’s public automobile insurance plan, all residents are covered for injury or death resulting from an automobile accident, regardless of who is at fault and if the accident occurs anywhere in Quebec.
If you have been in a vehicle accident and believe that your injury is not the result of the car accident, you may be able to file a lawsuit. IF YOU HAVE ACCEPTED COMPENSATION FROM THE SAAQ FOR DAMAGES, YOU ARE MOST LIKELY BARRED FROM FILING A PRIVATE LAWSUIT AGAINST ANY DEFENDANT.