Abdul was running late for work when he was pulled over and ticketed for making an unsafe left turn. The charge would cost him $110 and two demerit points, as well as affecting his vehicle insurance premium.
Abdul believed that he had made an honest mistake and that the ticket was unfair. He called the DAS Legal Helpline, and we sent a lawyer to defend him in traffic court. The charge was completely withdrawn, and Abdul’s DAS Personal policy saved him $750 in legal fees, plus the cost of the ticket and increased insurance premium.
Jeremy, a DAS policyholder, had a dispute with an airline. Although he had checked in before the cut-off time on his ticket, the attendant told Jeremy he was too late. As a result, he was assigned an economy seat, even though he had paid for business class. He tried to get a refund, but the airline refused.
A DAS Claims Analyst contacted the airline and Jeremy was quickly able to secure him a refund of $1,500 for the difference between economy and business class, as well as a discount on his next flight with the airline.
Mary, who had been working with an organization in various roles for over 20 years, was dismissed a few months before her retirement date - just as she was due for a pay increase. Unsure what to do, she called DAS.
We appointed a lawyer who sought to negotiate directly with Mary's former employer. We then issued a claim in the Human Rights Tribunal, indicating that her age was a factor in the decision to dismiss her. Mary was awarded 24 months of pension contributions, plus interest, at the rate she would have received following the scheduled pay increase. Mary was also awarded $5,000 in compensation as recognition that her age was a factor in her dismissal. Without a DAS policy, the legal costs for Mary would have been close to $10,000.
Brenda had been an employee of a financial services company for over 10 years. When the company was bought out by another company, a lot of staff were dismissed, including Brenda. Her contract contained a clause making it impossible for her to work in the same industry and province for the next 3 years. On top of this, she was only offered the statutory minimum.
Unsure of what to do, Brenda called the DAS Legal Helpline. It only took a couple of months for the appointed lawyer to get Brenda double the severance, as well as a cancellation of the post termination restrictions. Not only did it allow her to start applying for other jobs in the province she lived in right away, Brenda also saved $3,500 in legal fees.
Jenn purchased a vacation to a 5 star resort in the Caribbean through a travel agent, and was looking forward to a week in paradise. Upon arrival, she found that the resort was not at all as advertised. To her surprise, not only was the hotel a 2 star facility, it was also infested with insects.
As the bugs had invaded the entire hotel, Jenn called the travel agent for help. She was told that cancelling the holiday was not an option and had to stay for the full 7 days. By the end of the week, she was covered in bites and sleep deprived, having only managed to sleep a few hours each day.
The holiday created a great deal of anxiety for Jenn, and cost her a lot of money. The bug infestation was so severe she had to leave her luggage and belongings behind. When all attempts to recover any expense through the travel agency failed, Jenn turned to her DAS policy for help.
As it was the first time she was using her DAS policy, Jenn wasn’t sure what to expect. She braced herself, anticipating never ending meetings and huge amounts of paperwork. To her delight, none of her concerns materialized. The DAS team handled everything, only asking Jenn to provide receipts, dates and contact information. Three weeks later, the assigned lawyer was able to recover 67% of Jenn’s expenses. She also saved $1,500 in legal fees.
As Tessa was driving out of her building’s underground parking garage, she collided with a piece of metal that was hanging from the garage door. As a result, her windshield needed to be replaced at a cost of $1,100.
Tessa believed that building management should reimburse her for the cost of the repairs, as their failure to properly maintain the garage door had caused the damages. Building management told Tessa that they would not assume responsibility for the damages or reimburse the cost of the repairs to the windshield.
Tessa called the DAS Legal Helpline and a claim was opened. The case was assigned to a lawyer, who sent a demand letter to the property manager. Within a week, a cheque was delivered to Tessa’s condo for the full amount of the damages. Without a DAS Personal policy, the case would have cost Tessa approximately $800 in legal fees.
Reduction in work hours
Melinda had worked for her employer for over four years, when her hours were suddenly cut in half. Being a busy mother of three, she could not afford to stay at her job for the number of hours now being offered to her. Her employer would not address her concerns or offer a severance package.
Unsure what to do, Melinda called the DAS Legal Helpline and a claim was opened. We instructed a lawyer who contacted Melinda’s employer to advise that the situation would be considered a constructive dismissal, and that legal proceedings would commence if the company failed to offer an adequate severance package. The employer relented and a suitable severance package was negotiated for Melinda. Her DAS Personal policy saved Melinda approximately $1,900 in legal fees.
Tom was dismissed from a senior position with his employer after three years of service. He was offered $40,000 in severance pay, despite a clause in his executive employment contract which guaranteed a higher amount.
Tom was sure he was entitled to more from his employer, but his concerns were not acknowledged by the company. He called the DAS Legal Helpline and his assigned lawyer negotiated an increase in severance pay to $390,000. Without a DAS Personal policy, the case would have cost Tom approximately $15,000 in legal fees.
Employment dispute following sick leave
Jacintha returned to her job following a period of ill health, and was informed that her hours had been reduced significantly as there was no longer a business need for her to work full time. Jacintha was unsure what to do as she could not afford to work a lower number of hours, and she worried she would not be able to find another full time job right away.
She called the DAS Legal Helpline and a lawyer was assigned to the case. The lawyer contacted Jacintha’s employer to tell them that the alteration in the employment contract constituted a dismissal, and the employer agreed to reoffer Jacintha her full time hours. However, the ordeal caused Jacintha to see her employer in a negative light, and she decided that she did not want to return to the company. DAS negotiated a severance package which included a positive employment reference, five weeks severance pay, and outstanding vacation. Jacintha also saved $2,800 in legal fees.
Dispute with a realtor
When Yousef decided to purchase his first home, he entered into an agreement with an agent who was to find him a house in exchange for commission on the sale.
Yousef was on a tight time limit as he needed to vacate his rental property before a certain date. He made this clear to the agent before signing the contract, but the agent disappeared for several months and did not contact Yousef. Yousef was frustrated and stressed because he knew he needed to find a house before the end of his rental agreement. He decided to find a new agent, and this agent was successful in finding a house for Yousef to purchase.
Following the sale, the original agent contacted Yousef and informed him that their contract guaranteed that agent exclusive rights to the commission on any home Yousef would purchase. The agent sent a demand letter for $17,000 in commission, and issued proceedings in small claims court.
Yousef called the Legal Helpline and explained the situation. A DAS lawyer responded to the agent’s claim and the case was dismissed on the basis that the agent had not upheld his end of the contract or properly explained the contract to Yousef. If Yousef had taken action without DAS, the case would have cost him approximately $7,000 in legal fees.
Heather, an office manager, called the Legal Helpline for advice after a conversation between herself and her employer at her job. She had objected to her employer’s request to reduce her hours and pay. Shortly after this exchange, Heather was dismissed from her position with cause, allegedly as a result of her violating company policies. Even though Heather had been with the company for 15 years, being dismissed with cause meant that she was not entitled to payment in lieu of notice, and instead, her former employer offered her four months’ salary as compensation.
Stressed and unsure what to do, Heather called the DAS Legal Helpline and a lawyer was appointed to her case. The panel lawyer felt that the dismissal with cause was suspect and that Heather was entitled to more than her former employer had offered. The lawyer contacted her former employer, challenged their decision to dismiss her with cause, and as a result, was able to negotiate a settlement that Heather was happy with – without having to resort to litigation.
Within three months, the dispute was resolved and Heather received double the amount she was originally offered. Without a DAS Legal Expense Insurance policy, this would have costed Heather more than $2,000 in legal fees.
Sanjay spent years saving up for a down-payment for a house. When the day finally came, he was very excited to move in and settling into his new home. After an initial inspection, Sanjay discovered that he would have to hire an electrician to fix a few issues with the electrical box in the house. The contractor that Sanjay hired ended up installing the electricity hook-up incorrectly and causing a faulty circuit due to his substandard work.
Sanjay was disappointed and unhappy as his move would be delayed, and he was upset because the electrician refused to fix the issue and re-do the work. Sanjay didn’t know what to do next, so he called the DAS Legal Helpline for assistance. After he was given general legal information, his issue was passed to the DAS Claims team, and a claim was filed. A lawyer was appointed to Sanjay’s case, and the case was sent to the Small Claims Court.
The lawyer sent a demand letter, resulting in the contractor replacing the electrical box as well as fixing the deficiencies. Sanjay was able to move into his new home the next day. Without his DAS Legal Expense Insurance policy, he wouldn’t have been able to move in for months and he would have faced a bill of $2,625 in legal fees.
Stefan is a Sales Representative for a landscaping business, and he’s always on the road. One day, he receives a letter from the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) advising him that they would be auditing his tax returns. More specifically, they contested his employment expenses for travel and for meals over two consecutive years, reducing them by $43,000 and leaving him with a substantial tax bill.
Stefan was shocked when he saw how much he was expected to pay. He was unsure of his options, so he decided to call the DAS Legal Helpline. After the initial call, a lawyer was appointed to his case. The lawyer filed a notice of objection with the CRA and represented Stefan throughout the appeal process. The appointed lawyer successfully proved to the CRA that the expenses reported by Stefan were valid, and the assessment was reversed, resulting in a credit to Stefan’s account at the CRA.
Stefan was relieved and reassured, knowing that he could count on his DAS Legal Expense Insurance policy. In addition, he didn’t have to pay from his pocket for a specialized tax lawyer, whose services could have been charged up to $770 per hour.
On top of that, Stefan saved himself over $16,000 in legal fees, as well as the anxiety of figuring out how to respond to the CRA by himself.
Sam & Mark's Story
Sam and Mark have been happily married for over 20 years. As part as their annual tradition of taking a cottage trip every summer, the couple went on a vacation in their secondary home for a week. One evening, while they were walking their dog on the beach, another dog approached them. The second dog attacked and bit their dog, causing serious injury to their dog’s left hind leg. Sam and Mark were both in shock, and the other dog’s owner refused to admit any wrongdoing.
After visiting the animal hospital, they were told that their dog needed surgery and the veterinary bills were steep. They couldn’t afford to just pay the bills and move on, and were unsure of what else they could do.
So they called the DAS Legal Helpline for more information and to submit a claim. After the issue was sent to the DAS Claims team, Sam and Mark were assigned a lawyer to their case, who pursued the owner of the offending dog. After extended negotiations, the lawyer was successfully able to reach a settlement and recover the costs of the veterinary bills.
Without a DAS Legal Expense Insurance policy, a situation like this would have cost approximately $8,000 in legal fees, on top of the veterinary bills. Above all, Sam and Mark felt comforted and at peace, knowing that their dog was now protected and the costs taken care of.
A few weeks after completing a basement renovation, Tammy hired a company to redo her driveway. The result was very sloppy and visibly flawed. The work had to be redone, which meant an additional cost of $3,800. Tammy was tired of all the back-and-forth it took to finish her basement, and she didn’t want to have to spend more time and money on the driveway.
She contacted the paving company regarding her dissatisfaction, but the contractor became evasive and stopped responding to any contact after a couple of phone calls.
Unsure of her options, Tammy called the DAS Legal Helpline and her issue was passed to the DAS Claims team. A lawyer was assigned to her case and the legal dispute was brought to the Small Claims Court, where a judgment of $3,800 was attained.
Tammy was relieved that she was able to recover the costs to redo her driveway, and she didn’t have to worry about affording legal representation on top of that. In addition, with her DAS Legal Expense Insurance policy, she saved over $6,200 in legal fees.