FAQ

What is the difference between legal assistance and legal expense insurance?

 

Legal assistance provides only information by phone.

 

Legal expense insurance also allows you to get advice, as well as to take legal action and represent you in court.

 

You will find a comparison of the two products here.

What does legal expense insurance provide?

Protection can vary from one insurer to another.

It usually entails the following:

  • Unlimited legal assistance and information

To cover the legal fees of the lawyer you contact by phone, in most legal fields.

  • Financial assistance for specific disputes

To cover the legal fees for the lawyer of your choice, including incurred expenses (photocopies, travel expenses), expertise (experts' opinions) and court costs (filing of proceedings).

  • Financial assistance for specific powers of attorney, in absence of dispute

To cover the costs of a lawyer for power of attorney regarding inheritance or the protection of a person.

What type of information or assistance is provided?

Generally, all fields of law can be addressed.

Examples:

  • Family law
  • Labour law
  • Human rights
  • Property law
  • Bankruptcy
  • Immigration
  • Etc.
What disputes are covered?

Individuals

Consumer rights
Examples:

  • Non-fulfillment of sales or rental contract and its associated guarantees
  • Misrepresentations by a salesperson when purchasing a used vehicle
  • Problems abroad due to a misfeasance of the travel contract
  • Problem with a contractor

Bodily harm or material damages
Examples:

  • Injuries caused by falling on poorly maintained flooring
  • Injuries sustained by a child in the school yard due to unsafe environment
  • Physical suffering or handicap resulting from medical negligence

Property and premises
Examples:

  • Property and premises
  • Neighbourhood problems of which you are a victim
  • Disputes between owners and tenants (eviction, unsafe building, property damage)

Income
Examples:

  • Difficulty in enforcing your rights before public or private bodies that should provide you with financial compensation, such as:
  • la Commission de la santé et de la sécurité du travail
  • la Société de l'assurance automobile
  • l'assurance-emploi
  • un assureur en invalidité

Work
Examples:

  • Loss of employment or downgrading without valid cause
  • Discrimination and harassment
  • Refusal by an employer to pay the last two weeks of work or commissions following a layoff or dismissal

† If you are a non-unionized employee

Small businesses | Professional firms | Self-employed workers

Examples:

  • Non-fulfillment of a transaction or lease
  • Labour dispute between the company and an employee, except disputes resulting from union activities
  • Problems related to laws governing consumer protection, occupational health and safety, business practices, competition and companies
  • Conflicts with clients or suppliers
In non-dispute situations, what does the financial assistance cover?

Powers of attorney regarding estates and the protection of persons of consenting age.

Examples:

  • Protective supervision of a person of consenting age who has become incapacitated
  • Verifying a testament
  • Granting of power of attorney in case of an incapacity
  • Settlement of an undisputed estate
What is the legal expense insurance coverage and when does it come into effect?

Coverage varies from one insurance company to the next, but generally involves the following:

Disputes

  • Up to $5,000 per case and up to $15,000 per year.

Estates and protection of a person of consenting age

  • Up to $1,000 per case.

Deductible

  • Usually none. (Some insurers, however, require that the person insured contributes between 20% and 25% of the fees.)
  • The insurance policy usually comes into effect 60 days after being issued.
How much does legal expense insurance cost?

Individual or family protection

  • Between $30 and $100 per year, depending on the insurer and the type of protection chosen.

Small businesses, professional firms and self-employed workers

  • Approximately $300 per year.

So it's a small investment that could yield big returns because it enables you to learn about your rights and obligations, and to enforce these rights when necessary!

 

What questions should I ask my broker or insurer to ensure I get the coverage that's right for me?
  • You may already be covered, as automobile or home insurance policies sometimes include a legal expense insurance contract.
  • So check your current insurance contracts. Then, ask your insurer if your legal protection is adequate for your needs.

If you are not already covered, your insurer's answer to these questions may help you make an informed decision:

  • Is it an insurance plus assistance program or simply an assistance program (information only)?
  • What are the characteristics of the protection you offer (insured parties, coverage restrictions, deductible, insured party contribution, minimum amount claimed, etc.)?
  • What is the best program for a family, an individual, a self-employed worker, a professional firm or a small business? ?