HCV Victim Questionnaire

Important - Please read

Any information given to you by Botan Law Office in response to this questionnaire is given as a courtesy and constitutes only a brief summary of what the applicable law may be to the facts as you have related to us. We will give you legal information, not legal advice, It does not constitute legal advice to be relied upon by you. No lawyer-client relationship will be created. Legal advice is tailored to the specific circumstances of each case, laws are constantly changing, and all the relevant facts will not be know at this time. In order to obtain legal advice that you can rely upon, you must hire a lawyer. If you chose you may hire Botan Law Office to handle your legal problems after you receive this Consultation.

While we will do our best to keep your communication private, we cannot guarantee the confidentiality of information sent to us by email.  Therefore, do not give us information that you wish to keep private.

You must acknowledge by clicking the button below that you understand that we are not entering into a lawyer – client relationship by offering you a consultation and that you must not rely on any information we may give you to resolve any specific legal issues you may have at this time. You acknowledge that any information given by Botan Law Office is simply general information of the law that may or may not apply to your case.

Click here to fill our our questionnaire

In order to assist you and determine which HCV Compensation Plan(s) you may qualify for, please complete the questionnaire as best you can. Upon receipt of this information, you will be sent an email if you have provided us with your email address, or fax if you provided us with your fax number, or ordinary mail if no email address or fax number is provided or you indicate you prefer ordinary mail, a HCV Compensation Package with some forms to complete.

When you send that completed HCV Package back to us in the mail in the self addressed envelope that will be enclosed with the package, we can begin doing our work to obtain the information necessary from hospitals, doctors etc, to support your compensation claim. Once we have obtained the necessary information, we will complete the application forms for the HCV Plan(s) that you may qualify for and send them to you in another self addressed envelope for signature to be returned to us for filing. 

Hepatitis C Claims

What is HCV compensation about?

There are now several HCV compensation plans offered by the various provinces and the federal government.  Which one or ones apply to your situation depends on “when” and “where” you received your tainted blood.  They each vary in the amounts and kinds of compensation offered.  However, they are all identical in one respect; we, on your behalf, have to prove three things in order to qualify for compensation:

  1. that you have HCV;
  2. that you received a transfusion of blood or blood products sometime in your past before September 28, 1998, anywhere in Canada;
  3. that your HCV infection came from that transfusion and not from any other HCV risk activity, such as I.V. drug use, tattooing or unsafe sex with a HCV carrier not already covered by any HCV Compensation Plan.

Proving these things can be very difficult.

Deadline

The deadline to apply for HCV compensation is June 30, 2010. You must act now. After that date, you may be forever barred from seeking compensation for your HCV injuries.

Proving your claim

HCV does not show up on ordinary blood tests, only specialized tests that must be asked for can determine if you have HCV. Some tests only determine whether you were ever exposed to HCV, which by itself does not prove that you actually carry the HCV virus. Further testing is needed to confirm whether or not you actually carry the HCV virus.

Once you prove that you have the virus, you must then prove the severity of the infection.  The federal government’s plans award different compensation amounts for different levels of severity of infection. Only a specialist can determine what level of infection you have and as there are very few specialists, waiting lists can take up to 1 year in some provinces.

Even then, some of the tests they need to perform to determine the level of infection are invasive, such as liver biopsies, which can not be performed on all people.  Some people refuse to have it done.

Proving that you even received a transfusion can be difficult and in some cases impossible. While you may remember it, some hospital records fail to even record a transfusion occurred. You need the hospital records to prove it.

Some hospitals do not keep records going back more than 10 years. Even when records can be found, very often the unit numbers on the blood products that were transfused were not recorded in the hospital records. Without the unit numbers, the product can not be traced back to the original donor.
If the original donor can not be traced and tested for HCV, it can not be proven directly that the unit you received was tainted with the HCV virus.  Sometimes even when the unit number is recorded and the donor is traced, the donor refuses to be tested so still it can not be proven that the blood was infected.

Some Plans will still exclude claimants even if they can prove they have HCV and that their donor was HCV positive, if the claimant has other HCV risk factors too.

After 10 years of successfully doing these HCV compensation claims, we know the ways to get around these problems. It is our job to work through all these problems for you to ensure as best we can that your claim will be successful.

Services to be rendered

If retained, we will perform the following legal services on your behalf:

  1. Prepare and submit your claim application for HCV compensation;
  2. Investigate all circumstances we deem necessary regarding your HCV infection;
  3. Retain any agents or experts we deem necessary to assist in the prosecution of your claim, such as doctors or other medical specialists;
  4. Represent you in our legal capacity up to and including any appeals if your claim is rejected  and we believe there is merit to an appeal;
  5. We are not being retained to commence a legal action in court against any party responsible for your infection.

We will give you the best legal services we can but you must keep in mind that we can make no guarantees that your claim will be successful.

Communication

Two-way communication will be very important in our lawyer/client relationship. If you ever need clarification of what we are doing, please call, email or make an appointment for a meeting. If you have any information that might help us to handle your matter you must let us know. We will report to you from time to time by letter, telephone, email or in person.
We will not send you copies of every letter or document we receive or send.  We may if we deem it necessary send you copies of correspondence or documents that we feel you should have for your records. If you need further explanation of a document or correspondence you receive from us, please call us right away. It is your responsibility to keep us informed of any change in your mailing address or phone number. If you do not provide us with updated contact information, we will not able to contact you for instruction and will not be liable for any missed deadlines regarding your claim.

Privilege and confidentiality

Certain communications between solicitor and client are absolutely confidential. This confidentiality is known as the "solicitor-client privilege." Because of it, you can give us all the facts relevant to your matter without fear that those facts will become public. We can not be compelled by the tax department, the police, the government, or the courts to divulge information that is subject to solicitor-client privilege. The solicitor-client privilege is your privilege, not ours, so only you can waive it.

Time needed

It is impossible to predict from the outset how long your claim will take to complete.  Hospital record searches can take months before copies are received. The blood trace backs which are necessary to prove whether any particular unit you may have received was tainted with HCV, can take 6-9 months or more. Doctor’s reports must be ordered and often they take months to be completed.
We can not control this part of the claim process.  We can only try our best to move things along expeditiously and protect your interests.

Fees and expenses

There is no fee or any form of cost to complete the HCV Questionnaire on line. There is no fee if you retain us and we are unable to obtain any compensation for you.