Canadian Lawyer

July 2021

The most widely read magazine for Canadian lawyers

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Page 30 of 51 29 G luckstein Personal Injury Lawyers did not predict a pandemic that would change how the legal system worked, but Charles Gluckstein says lawyers and staff at his firm were prepared for it. "We were ready and set to go," Gluckstein says, remembering Friday, March 13, 2020, when COVID-19 sent Ontario along with most of the rest of the world into lockdown. When Monday, March 16 rolled around, the firm was ready to keep going, with staff working remotely from home, with web-based tech- nology holding things together." Gluckstein also says he knew it was important to regularly connect with staff to let them know what was going on and see each other, even if it was remotely. "I started doing town halls almost on a weekly basis, to make sure that there were those connections and that we stayed on our mission to do the best job possible." Gluckstein's father, Bernard, founded the firm in 1962 and is well known for being a staunch advocate for the rights of injured people, and for his philanthropy. Charles Gluckstein came on board at the firm after being called to the bar in 1999. He is a specialist in civil litigation, which encom- passes personal injury, motor vehicle claims, medical and professional negligence, as well as occupier's liability issues. A past president of the Ontario Trial Lawyers Association, Gluckstein has strong knowledge of legislation relating to automobile accidents and insurance, applying this knowledge to both negotiate a settlement or go to trial. While COVID-19 has sped up the modern- ization of the legal system to make it more efficient and cost-effective in many ways, thanks to virtual technology, Gluckstein predicts that the time to resolve cases already in the system will take much longer than before the pandemic, "and they were already very long." The small percentage of personal injury cases that will end up going to trial will not be dealt with quickly after the court system opens to pre-COVID conditions, he adds. Criminal trials and other urgent matters will likely take precedence. If there is an insistence on a jury trial, rather than a judge alone, that could take even longer. Gluckstein says that, at least among personal injury lawyers, there is a consensus building about whether jury trials are needed in certain types of civil cases, including most automobile accidents and should be done by the judge alone. "It's not that juries can't deal with academic and complex cases; judges are more familiar with what's at stake and what the issues are. Often they can provide the feedback to help advance the law." GLUCKSTEIN LAWYERS 14 Number of lawyers 32 Number of support staff 2 Number of partners 1962 When firm was founded GLUCKSTEIN AT A GLANCE Main areas of personal injury practice: personal injury, birth injury, medical malpractice, product liability, class actions, mass torts, wrongful death, long-term disability Email: Telephone: 416-408-4252 Website: Gluckstein Personal Injury Lawyers Bernard Gluckstein, founding partner, Charles Gluckstein, partner, Gluckstein Personal Injury Lawyers

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