What we can do for you

Are you dealing with the physical, emotional and financial burden of a disabling illness or injury? Stop struggling on your own. Contact our expert long term disability lawyers to fight the insurance company on your behalf and get the maximum settlement that you deserve.

Fishman Lawyers is committed to protecting the rights of individuals, handling legal matters in the areas of long-term disability insurance denials and other insurance disputes involving illness, personal injury or death.

From the moment we take on your case, you can turn the focus back to your health, knowing that we won’t stop fighting until we have negotiated the best settlement possible on your behalf.

We understand that handling a disability or personal injury lawsuit means more than winning. It means taking care of what’s most important – you and your loved ones. Please contact us today if you, or a loved one, have been denied disability benefits or injured in a motor vehicle accident. Turn our experience to your advantage, and ensure you receive the benefits you are entitled to – as quickly as possible.

We offer:

Free initial consultations
Hospital and in-home visits (in appropriate cases)
Free second opinions

Disability Claims.

Disability lawsuits present unique legal tests, and engage different legal principles than personal injury cases. If you have been denied benefits despite the fact that you are unable to work, it is important to understand the legal principles that apply and how they affect you. It is important to speak with a lawyer who understands disability law.

Your disability insurance company may tell you that you are no longer entitled to receive a benefit – this does not necessarily make it so. At Fishman Lawyers we make sure that the disability insurance company abides by its duty to act in good faith towards you or your loved one, by ensuring that it pays every claim based not upon what the insurance company says you are entitled to receive, but based on what the law says you are entitled to receive.

Brain Injuries.

Because a brain injury is “invisible”, many people do not appreciate how devastating and misunderstood it can be. The impact is not just to the injured survivor, but to family members as well. Everyone affected suffers a great loss.

Every brain injury is different and every legal case needs special individual attention. When seeking a lawyer to help you, it is critical that your lawyer understands brain injury and has experience in brain injury cases. We have that expertise. Recovery can be slow and difficult. We protect our clients through the process so they can focus on rehabilitation. A brain injury can affect the whole family. We’ll help protect your family’s future.

Automobile Accidents.

The fall-out from a car accident can be very serious. People get badly hurt, or worse, killed. Families may struggle to keep things together. An inability to work or loss of income can cause financial pressure. Representatives from ICBC want complex forms completed and often request in-person meetings. Understanding how to navigate through all of these issues, while trying to recover from an injury or mourning the loss of a loved one, is often too much to handle without help.

We’re here to help in every way we can. We work hard for our clients to ensure the best possible outcome. We explain things clearly using simple terms. We are extremely knowledgeable with the auto insurance legislation and in handling car accident cases. Our ability to match specific skills to critical legal issues means we don’t waste time or your resources.

Motorcycle Accidents.

Riding a motorcycle is a passion for many people, but motorcycle accidents can cause injuries that are serious or even fatal. Sometimes families struggle to keep things together. Financial pressures can mount when there is an inability to work or loss of income. Representatives from ICBC want complex forms completed and often request in-person meetings. Understanding how to navigate through all of these issues, while trying to recover from an injury or mourning the loss of a loved one, is often too much to handle without help. A motorcycle accident can be devastating. We’re here to help in every way we can.

We keep your best interests at heart.

 

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About Us

Jan

“The Insurance Company’s Worst Nightmare” – Glenda. H., a client.

 

Training and Experience

Jan A. Fishman is a disability and personal injury lawyer with very special training and experience.

Unlike most lawyers who sue insurance companies, Jan actually worked in the “belly of the beast” for many years. During the 25 years he has practiced law, Jan acted for insurance companies for 17 years. From 1995 – 2002, Jan was frequently retained by 5 different insurance companies (including ICBC) to defend lawsuits brought against them or their insureds. From 2002 – 2012, Jan was in-house counsel for Manulife Financial, one of Canada’s largest insurance companies, defending hundreds of lawsuits brought against Manulife’s various companies.

In 2012 Jan founded his own law firm dedicated to helping disabled and injured people who have been wrongly denied insurance or accident benefits.

Manulife Financial unsuccessfully attempted to prevent Jan from acting against it in 2015. In McMyn v. Manufacturer’s Life Insurance Company, Manulife argued that, as a former in-house lawyer, Jan had knowledge of their “business practices, litigation strategies, insurance policies and certain claims personnel” and it would be unfair to allow him to now use this knowledge against them. The BC Supreme Court disagreed with Manulife. Jan is now free to act for disabled people with claims against Manulife, as well as every other insurance company in Canada.

Jan’s direct phone number is: (604) 682-0717; his email is: jan@fishmanlawyers.ca.

Education and Recognition

Jan received his B.A. from Simon Fraser University and his law degree from Osgoode Hall Law School in Toronto. He was awarded the Governor-General’s Silver Medal in 1983. Jan became a member of the B.C. bar in 1992.

Jan

Since 2005, Jan has consistently held a “Distinguished” peer-review rating from Martindale-Hubbell, and since 2013 he has also consistently held a “Preeminent” client-review rating from that same organization.

During his first 10 years of practice, Jan had a broad based litigation practice. He appeared as counsel for both sides in personal injury, family and criminal matters. Jan has appeared as counsel in over 50 reported or indexed decisions before all levels of Court and two administrative tribunals. He has argued a wide variety of issues involving insurance law; particularly long term disability, life insurance and personal injury. 

Positions held

A twice-elected member of the Provincial Council of the Canadian Bar Association (“CBA”), Jan is a former President of the Abbotsford Bar Association, and a former Chair of the CBA Court Services Committee. Jan has been twice appointed to the Audit Committee of the CBA, and served 2 terms (the maximum permitted) as Chair of the CBA Resolutions and Bylaws Committee. He also served 7 years on the board of the Law Courts Inn, and is an active volunteer in the general community. Jan has judged UBC Law School Moots and the PLTC civil trial program, as well as writing for and presenting to professional organizations including the Continuing Legal Education Society of BC, Insight Information, and the Canadian Life and Health Insurance Association.

In 2016 Jan joined the Editorial Advisory Board of the Civil Jury Instructions (“CIVJI”), the exclusive publication used by judges in BC to instruct juries in civil trials.

Jan is a member of the Law Society of BC, the Canadian Bar Association, the Trial Lawyers Association of BC, and the Canadian Internet Registration Authority.

Martindale-Hubbell Distinguished Rating:

BV 2017

Jan

 

Jan’s commitment to you:

If you retain me, I will be YOUR lawyer. You will have me on your side every step of the way.  I will personally handle every aspect of your case from start to finish. You will not be passed off to some junior associate, paralegal or law clerk.  Your phone calls and emails will be promptly answered, as will your questions.  You will be kept well informed during every step of the process. I don’t run a mill and I don’t do this work to make a fast profit.  That means you will NEVER be pressured by me to accept some insurance company “low-ball” settlement of your claim.  I don’t spend a fortune on advertising, but I’ll put my success rate up against all the other lawyers out there who do.  There are bigger firms that you can use.  But you won’t find a better lawyer or one who will give your case the personal attention that I will.

This is my commitment to you.

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Representative Cases

Because trials can be expensive and risky, the majority of cases never go to court. Most cases are usually settled through the careful collection of evidence and skillful negotiations. There are many benefits to settling a long term disability claim without a trial. However, it’s not always possible to settle, sometimes because the other side simply refuses to be reasonable. In those cases it’s important to have a lawyer who’s willing and able to go all the way for you. Your lawyer must be prepared and experienced enough to run a trial, and sometimes an appeal, to see justice done.

Jan Fishman is a very experienced courtroom lawyer. His cases include:

Supreme Court of Canada

Pekarek v. Manufacturers Life Ins. Co., [2006] SCCA No. 305, 2007 CanLII 1137

British Columbia Court of Appeal

Kong v. Manulife Financial Services Inc., 2009 BCCA 90
Pekarek v. Manufacturers Life Ins. Co., 2006 BCCA 250
Metcalfe v. Manufacturers Life Ins. Co., 2005 BCCA 473
Asselstine v. Manufacturers Life Ins. Co. and UBC, 2005 BCCA 465
Ali v. Manufacturers Life Ins. Co., et al., 2005 BCCA 294
Asselstine v. Manufacturers Life Ins. Co. and UBC, 2005 BCCA 292
Metcalfe v. Manufacturers Life Ins. Co., 2004 BCCA 669
Lind v. Canadian Northern Shield Ins. Co., 2001 BCCA 229p
Duquette v. Leadley, 1999 BCCA 208

British Columbia Supreme Court

McMyn v. The Manufacturers Life Ins. Co., et al., 2015 BCSC 2205
Kopet v. SFU, 2012 BCSC 525
Nayyar v. The Manufacturers Life Ins. Co., et al., 2012 BCSC 470
Nayyar v. The Manufacturers Life Ins. Co., et al., 2012 BCSC 28
Turpin v. Manufacturers Life Insurance Company, 2011 BCSC 1162
Turpin v. Manufacturers Life Insurance Company, 2011 BCSC 1159
Toor v. Aetna Life Insurance Co., et al., 2011 BCSC 691
Nayyar v. The Manufacturers Life Ins. Co., et al., 2010 BCSC 1671
Nayyar v. The Manufacturers Life Ins. Co., et al., 2010 BCSC 1588
Colgur v. The Manufacturers Life Ins. Co., 2009 BCSC 1125
MacLean v. The Manufacturers Life Ins. Co., 2008 BCSC 926
Yeung and Yeung v. Manufacturers Life Ins. Co., 2008 BCSC 197
Falk v. Manufacturers Life Ins. Co., 2008 BCSC 173
Kong v. Manulife Financial Services Inc., 2008 BCSC 65
Hunter v. Aetna Life Insurance Company, et al., 2007 BCSC 1902
Kong v. Manulife Financial Services Inc., 2007 BCSC 1559
Kong v. Manulife Financial Services Inc., 2007 BCSC 1281
Ames v. Maritime Life Assurance Co., 2006 BCSC 2042
Cyr (Re), 2006 BCSC 1813
Milner v. Manufacturers Life Ins. Co., 2006 BCSC 1571
Cyr (Re), 2006 BCSC 1523
Larlee v. Manufacturers Life Ins. Co., 2006 BCSC 1497
Milner v. Manufacturers Life Ins. Co., 2005 BCSC 1661
Martin v. Manufacturers Life Ins. Co., 2005 BCSC 528
Ali v. Manufacturers Life Ins. Co., et al., 2004 BCSC 1815
Ali v. Manufacturers Life Ins. Co., et al., 2004 BCSC 781
Ali v. Manufacturers Life Ins. Co., et al., 2004 BCSC 717
Stuart v. Manufacturers Life Ins. Co., 2004 BCSC 501
Metcalfe v. Manufacturers Life Ins. Co., 2004 BCSC 1526
Chapman v. Bullock, 2002 BCSC 1805
R. v. Dosanjh, 2002 BCSC 25
R. v. V.L.T., 2001 BCSC 956
Lind v. Canadian Northern Shield Ins. Co., 2000 BCSC 1939
R. v. Thornton, 2000 BCSC 1430
Smith v. Atson Farms Ltd., 1997 CanLII 2828, 1997] B.C.J. No. 677
Dalrymple v. Briscoe, 1996 CanLII 8459, [1996] B.C.J. No. 3248
Evertt v. Grosvenor International Canada Ltd.,1995 CanLII 1720, [1995] B.C.J. No. 2419

British Columbia Provincial Court

Tsang v. Equinox Financial Group Inc., et al., 2008 BCPC 67
Rayburn v. Manufacturers Life Ins. Co., 2006 BCPC 136
Pelletier v. YMCA, [1999] B.C.J. No. 1868
Narayan v. Kwong, [1999] B.C.J. No. 1481
Whitmey v. Currie, [1999] B.C.J. No. 1160
P.W. v. D.C. and S.C., 1999 BCPC 40
Thomas and Olson v. Hunt and Simmonds, 1999 BCPC 35
Ramsey et al. v. Whittaker et al., 1998 BCPC 17
Campbell v. Funk, 1998 BCPC 16
R. v. C.O., 1997 BCPC 18
MSA Ford v. Halliday, 1996 BCPC 12
R. v. B.R.S., 1995 BCPC 6
M. and L.G. v. R.W., 1993 BCPC 4

Administrative Tribunals

Desjardins v. Gonelly, [2005] B.C.H.R.T.D. No. 190
Rivtow Marine Inc. v. International Union of Operating Engineers, Local 115, [2005] C.L.A.D. No. 17
Desjardins v. Gonelly, [2005] B.C.H.R.T.D. No. 58
Imperial Oil Ltd. v. B. C. (Ministry of Water, Land and Air Protection), [2002] B.C.E.A. No. 5

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Testimonials

 

“… there is public benefit in having Mr. Fishman at liberty to act in litigation adverse to Manulife…”
David Allsebrook, CIRA panelist, September 16, 2016, in Reasons for Judgment dismissing a Manulife application

 

“I have recommended Jan already to an acquaintance. I found him extremely knowledgeable, accommodating, and easy to understand. My settlement was much better than I anticipated, despite the inherent weaknesses in my case that Jan skillfully worked with. You can tell he enjoys doing what he does, and if anyone has anything bad to say about him it’s probably because they lost to him in court.”
Kathleen M., a client, July 28, 2016                                                                                           

 

“I was very fortunate Jan Fishman personally represented me against the largest insurance company in Canada. His extensive knowledge & experience is current and relevant. His expertise and compassion made him an exceptional lawyer. Using his intimate knowledge & experience as a former in house counsel, Jan aggressively, skillfully and successfully negotiated my complicated case; and achieved a financial settlement that was well beyond my expectation. I am immensely grateful for his excellent work.”
Wendy W., a client, May 3, 2016                                                                                                                                                              

 

“Mr. Fishman … took his responsibilities as counsel seriously, including his responsibility to carefully prepare witnesses for discovery and trial. This was confirmed to me by individuals who had been represented by Mr. Fishman at an examination for discovery. For example, Ms. Marina Holl, who is now retired from Manulife, complimented Mr. Fishman for the thoroughness of his discovery preparation and post examination “de-brief”, and on more than one occasion suggested Manulife’s other litigators should take the same detailed approach to such matters.”                                                    
M. Blair Anderson, Assistant Vice President and Senior Counsel – Lead Counsel Complex Litigation, Manulife Financial, said under oath in an affidavit on Oct. 8, 2015

 

“I contacted Mr. Fishman to represent me after an MVA that involved TransLink and another vehicle. This process was very new to me and Mr. Fishman kindly guided me through each step of my ordeal, helping me to better understand what to expect. He communicated with clarity and diligence, providing me with all of the information crucial for me to make informed decisions. I felt supported and able to focus on my recovery by having someone on my side who gave me great counsel and worked tirelessly for my interests. Mr. Fishman was thorough, professional, very caring and patient. I would highly recommend him to anyone who needs representation.”
Lily C., a client, May 5, 2015

 

“Jan is meticulous in law and concerned with the well-being of his clients. I could never have found a better fit for me than Jan Fishman. He knows disability (Long Term Disability) law well, communicates wonderfully and is by far a fabulous value for the money. My settlement came quicker and was for a larger amount than I’d hoped. Without him I could have been destitute, even homeless. If Jan is willing to represent you in your case, it would be best for you to say yes immediately.”
Sharon C., a client, Sept. 23, 2013

 

“Right from our initial meeting with Jan A. Fishman I found him to be attentive, thorough in explaining the whole process of my law suit, including all of the fees involved, was very open to me asking any kind of question and made sure that I understood everything. Jan was also very compassionate to me about my brain cancer and understood my many questions I had. I have full faith in Jan’s knowledge and ability and know that I don’t have to worry about my law suit, Jan is working hard on my side.”
Mary-Lou B., a client, June 7, 2013

 

“Jan’s extensive experience in the insurance field and his excellent litigation skills will allow him to excel in any related employment. His many years as in-house counsel at Manulife has allowed him to develop strong team oriented and interpersonal skills which makes him a valuable asset to any potential employer. I have worked with Jan during my many years at Manulife and have always found him to be dedicated and a strong advocate. Jan has my full recommendation.”
Albert Suissa, mediator and arbitrator, March 20, 2013

 

“Jan is very experienced and knowledgeable in his field.”
Abigail Turner, lawyer and partner at Harper Grey LLP, Dec. 7, 2012

 

“Jan has a keen grasp of insurance law. He is always well prepared and is an excellent advocate.”
The Honourable Judge Laura Bakan, Provincial Court of British Columbia, Dec. 7, 2012

 

“I worked with Jan Fishman as an Associate at a Vancouver Law Firm practising litigation including insurance law, personal injury matters, and property loss. He is very experienced with all levels of court and handling matters for businesses and individuals. Following our time together, Jan worked as an in house counsel for a publicly traded company, responsible for their litigation in British Columbia, and where he demonstrated proficiency in civil litigation matters and a true command of evidentiary rules and cross-examination of expert witnesses. A great advocate for his client!”
Julie Fisher, lawyer and chair at Coquitlam Foundation, Nov. 6, 2012

 

“I have known and worked with Jan Fishman for over a decade. I would recommend him in the areas of life and disability insurance, commercial insurance, and civil litigation generally.”
Harmon Hayden, lawyer and former partner at Watson Goepel LLP, Nov. 5, 2012

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