Thomson Rogers' 'real life counsel' goes beyond the courtroom

Partner Robert Ben highlights the firm's dedication, longevity, and strategies for long-term success

Thomson Rogers has been around for almost ninety years and isn’t going anywhere, says partner Robert Ben. He shares how the firm’s approach to client advocacy and its constant evolution to stay on top — or even ahead — of developments in law, medicine, and technology make it a front-runner in the field.

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Greg Greenberg [00:00:06] Hello and welcome to Canadian Lawyer TV. I'm Greg Greenberg from Key Media and today we're speaking with Robert Ben, Partner at Thompson Rogers. Robert is a highly effective advocate for his clients, which seems to be on par for the course of Thomson Rogers. The firm was recently named one of Canadian Lawyer's Top Personal Injury Boutiques. First off, congratulations, Robert, and thanks very much for being here with us today.  

Robert Ben [00:00:29] Thanks, Greg.  

Greg Greenberg [00:00:31] So this is the firm's first year making this list. Robert, why is Thompson Rogers won the Top 10 Personal Injury Boutique award every year since the awards inception? What makes it stand out? 

Robert Ben [00:00:43] First, we're honored Greg to have been named as one of this year's Top Personal Injury Law Boutiques in Canada. But I'd say we're even more proud to have made that select list year after year. Frankly, it's what we strive for. And it's what we expect of ourselves. To your question about what makes Thomson Roger stand out, you know, our clients who come to us after suffering life altering injuries because of someone else's negligence, whose lives have been derailed through no fault of their own, whose ability to work and function in their day to day lives has been seriously compromised and whose futures are often uncertain, they come to us at their most vulnerable, and they need and deserve the best possible legal advice and representation. They can have to put their lives back on track to the extent they can. They need a dedicated advocate someone to speak for them. And that's what we do. None of our clients want to be involved in a legal battle with an insurance company over compensation. They, you know, they just want their lives back. When I speak to a client, what I often hear that it's not a legal case for them. That's not what it's about. It's real life, it's their life. So we take that responsibility very seriously. And you'll often hear lawyers talk about files at Thomson Rogers, we talk about clients, people, although it's always a professional relationship, we make it a point to get to know each and every client on a very personal level so that we can understand what they're going through, so that we can understand what they need so that we can understand how to help them so we can tell their real life story. There's a an old adage amongst lawyers that I certainly take to heart. And that's that a lawyer has bought one friend in the world, his or her client. And that's all we think about our clients. But what I think defines Thompson Rodgers is our commitment to delivering results. We're committed to being leaders in the personal injury field, our knowledge of the law, the resources we have at our disposal to be able to connect clients with the best medical experts and treatment providers, the way we diligently prepare each and every case. I think our willingness to take a case through to trial where necessary, and our ability to defend cases on appeal. And if I could I think some of our recent successes speak to our commitment to delivering results this year, we secured an important victory in the Denman case where the Court of Appeal for Ontario upheld an $8.5 million verdict for our client in a medical malpractice matter, after a bitterly fought trial where we exposed the bias of the defendants medical expert. And that came on the tail of a successful trial in Baker in Blue Cross in which I was involved where a jury found against our clients Long Term Disability Insurance Company, and made what is currently the largest known punitive damages award against an insurance company in the history of Canadian jurisprudence, and not only vindicated our client, but I believe it will also help future insurance claimants who may have been treated unfairly by their insurance company. And there's also our involvement in a very important and recently certified class action against certain Long Term Care Home operators on behalf of 1000s of nursing home residents who have suffered or died because of the mismanagement of the COVID 19 pandemic and that case is still ongoing. And of course, we can't forget that not all cases need to go to trial. You know, we've negotiated countless favorable settlements for our clients avoiding trial. So you know, to sort of sum it up if I could use a sports analogy. At Thompson Rogers, I really believe we have a deep bench of more than 20 personal injury and medical malpractice lawyers, all of whom are occurring prepped and ready to take a case to trial to defend it on appeal, and many of whom have been recognized by Blacksburg, best lawyers, Martindale, Hubbell, and other peer reviewed awards as being leaders in in the field. So we've got a fantastic team, Greg.  

Greg Greenberg [00:05:16] Can you dig a little bit deeper into how you ensure client satisfaction? 

Robert Ben [00:05:21] When you visit our website, you'll see that we call ourselves real life counsel. So we don't see our role as being limited to the courtroom, people dealing with life altering injuries not only need great advocates, they also need good counsel good advice, they need to understand the law, they need to understand their options. They need to understand what remedies may be available to them. We make it a point to tailor our advice and strategy to each client, because each client is different. Each client is unique. So you know, as I said earlier, we support each and every client in their rehabilitation and recovery by connecting him with the best possible medical experts and treatment providers, we make sure that they access all available funding for their needs, we empower them to the extent we can to be able to map out the best possible path to recovery. But it's not really that complicated. We listen, we care. And then we act and a byproduct of that is that many of our former clients years after their cases have resolved, trust us by referring friends and family who may need legal advice. And from my perspective, that's the best endorsement we can get. 

Greg Greenberg [00:06:40] And finally, Thomson Rogers has been around for nearly nine decades. And that's an incredible tenure. How are you making sure we'll be around for nine more talk about your longevity? 

Robert Ben [00:06:50] Well, it's remarkable that this firm grew out of a small to lawyer partnership in 1935, I think well before my time, and continues to thrive and excel today, almost 90 years later. We certainly don't plan on going anywhere. We do recognize that in order to continue for the next 90 years and beyond. We can't just rest on our laurels or our past accomplishments. So we have to constantly stay on top of and even ahead of developments in the law and medicine. We have to ensure that we attract as we have the best and brightest young lawyers to progress through our ranks. And I can tell you, we have some very smart, tenacious young lawyers here at the firm. It's very exciting to watch them grow and develop. We also need to embrace technological change that would allow us to serve our clients better, more efficiently and productively. And you know, the traditional things maintain our dedication to excellence, and fearless advocacy to take complex and challenging cases that some others might not. And lastly, to never forget that the only reason we're here is to serve our clients.  

Greg Greenberg [00:08:07] It's been a pleasure speaking with you today, Robert, thanks so much for taking the time.  

Robert Ben [00:08:11] Thanks a lot, Greg.  

Greg Greenberg [00:08:13] And thanks to our audience for joining us today. Make sure you stay tuned for more award spotlights. I'm Greg Greenberg for Canadian Lawyer TV.