I’ve been practicing law 37+ years and I’m an experienced personal injury lawyer. I work for people with serious injuries, and I do all that I can to help them out with everything that flows from having to deal with usually life-altering conditions.
I’m known in the personal injury legal community as knowledgeable, fair, and reasonable, but the lawyers I deal with also know that I’m going to fight hard for my client’s best interests.
I’m a people person – I listen carefully to my clients, and they tell me I’m easy to talk to, compassionate and responsive to their needs.
My job is to help you maximize your return to good health. Assisting you with recovery and a return to normal (as much as that is possible) helps you on a practical level and from a legal standpoint it fulfills your obligation to mitigate your losses. This makes you present better to insurers for settlement negotiations and moving your claim forward.
The thing that makes me happiest about my job is helping people and having them go away, I won’t say happy; no one is happy to be injured but happy the process is over, and they can move on with their life. It’s a good feeling to hear that I come highly recommended and an even better one when a client leaves the firm happy they hired me. To me, this means I did my job – it’s what I’m supposed to do.
Beyond my law practice, I’m just like many of you. I’m a parent and a grandparent, I’m physically active, and I show that I care about helping make our community a better place to live by engaging in a variety of local initiatives.
What Happens When You Hire Me
My first goal is to reassure you and make you feel comfortable. Most people have very little knowledge about the legal system and tend to be apprehensive about meeting with a lawyer. When I first talk with clients, they are almost all afraid about their futures and worried about their health and the financial implications of what’s happened to them. This is totally normal. Each client is also unique, so I gear what I say to your individual circumstances.
The first point of contact is almost always a phone call. With that in mind, I will make sure you come away with an outline of how the process works, what I can do to help on the rehabilitation side, and what the next steps are. I will ask you background questions about yourself, about the accident, and your injuries so that I can give you the immediate information you need to make some decisions about how you want to proceed.
The next step is to come and meet with me face to face and determine whether you want to hire me. At our meeting I will cover the basics that usually arise in these situations including questions like:
- How long is this going to take?
- What is my claim worth?
- What will you do for me, what do I do while this is going on?
- How much is this going to cost me and how do you get paid?
Just like no two car accidents is the same, every case is going to be different. However, there are some things that are universal. Claims involving serious injuries do take a long time to resolve, and the amount of compensation is never immediately clear. This is because you need medical evidence about the nature and extent of your injuries and any permanent disabilities before you can sort out what kind of compensation will be appropriate.
Education around the process is very important. There are always two points of contact at our firm, your lawyer (me) and my assistant. I will monitor your progress and make sure you are getting the medical services and benefits you need during your recovery and rehabilitation. We know that you need to be told what’s going on and why before being asked to make decisions on a settlement.
Personal injury lawyers work on what is called “contingency.” This means you don’t pay any money up front and our firm also covers the costs of disbursements (costs to start a claim and costs to get necessary medical and expert reports to prove your claim). My getting paid is dependent (contingent) on my getting you money for your claim. I will only get paid, if and when you get paid and if you don’t our firm will absorb the disbursements that were required to prove your claim.
- 37+ years of experience practicing law including six years practicing insurance defense litigation at Parlee Irving and nine years with the Attorney General (now Alberta Justice) where I defended the Crown, and its agencies as well as acted as counsel when the Crown was a plaintiff.
- I joined Cummings Andrews Mackay LLP (CAM LLP) in 1994, and I have been representing seriously injured people ever since.
- My practice has ranged from helping people with serious head trauma and brain injuries to clients with spinal cord injuries, serious fractures, and other life-altering injuries.
- I also have experience helping clients deal with the emotionally charged process of getting compensation under the Fatal Accidents Act in wrongful death claims.
- Admitted to the Alberta Bar, 1980.
- Peer Rated 4.5/5 for High Professional Achievement, Martindale-Hubbell®, 2016, endorsed for high ethical standing
- Member, Canadian Bar Association (CBA)
- Member, Alberta Civil Trial Lawyers Association (ACTLA)
- Member, Law Society of Alberta
- Member, Edmonton Bar Association
- Former Member, Board of Directors, The Brain Care Centre, formerly the North American Brain Injury Society (NABIS). I have been involved with this wonderful organization one way or another for many years. I am honoured to have been the recipient of the BCC’s Patrick Hirschi Lifetime Achievement Award in 2015. Currently, I’m involved in helping connect people who are working on concussion research.
- I’m a “hockey Mom” and I’ve held various positions with Hockey Alberta including Zone 7 Director, Member of the Board of Directors, and currently Vice Chair of the Board. I’m also the proud recipient of Hockey Alberta’s 2013 President’s Award.
- Member, Executive Board (2000-2005) and President (2004-05) Sherwood Park Minor Hockey Association and recipient of the SPMHA Lifetime Achievement Award (2007).
- Former Member, Board of Directors, Fox Haven Lake Estates
Outside the Office
- Like many of my clients, I’m a Mom. My children are wonderful adults now, and I’m proud to say I have raised them on my own.
- I love to read and travel (my most recent travels took me to France where I got to put my six years of studying French to use).
- I’m a keen golfer and my claims to golfing fame include a hole-in-one in Hua Hin Thailand (Feb 14, 2005) and a hole-in-one at Northern Bear Golf Course (July 16, 2010). Still struggling to get my third!
- My latest passion is something called 9Round 30 Minute Kickbox Fitness. It’s an efficient way to stay fit and great for clearing your mind. I’m a convert!