Shine Lawyers has proudly announced its partnership with the Australasian Society for the Study of Brain Impairment (ASSBI).
The partnership will provide Shine Lawyers with the opportunity to help support and advocate for our clients suffering from a brain injury, as well as others like them, long after their cases have been resolved.
We are privileged to have the opportunity to connect with this community and demonstrate our commitment to ASSBI’s mission statement to work together to improve the lives of people with brain impairment.
Skye McDonald, Treasurer at ASSBI recently interviewed Jamie Shine, Partner at Shine Lawyers.
What are your hopes for the partnership between ASSBI and Shine?
Through our relationship with ASSBI, we hope to ensure that our clients are connected to the right treatment providers. We also hope to create awareness regarding the importance of engaging specialised legal representation where it’s needed. We appreciate how crucial it is for our clients to have the appropriate support and a dedicated team of practitioners who understand how to care for and advocate for those with such unique and complex needs.
We feel honoured to play a part in the growth of ASSBI and to support the values and mission this important organisation represent.
When you were at our last ASSBI conference, what were your impressions of our conference delegates?
The conference delegates were very welcoming and knowledgeable. From our discussions with many of the attendees, it was encouraging to see that your members share the same dedication to continuous learning. We were impressed with the level of specialisation of the experts we met and found their niche areas of study extremely interesting. Since the conference, we have fortunately been able to reconnect with a number of delegates and utilise their expertise to assist with our clients’ legal matters.
Were you able to go to any presentations and, if so, did any have particular relevance to you?
We were fortunate enough to attend a number of the conference workshops - it was a great opportunity to absorb and learn from the experts in attendance. Whilst we gleaned new insights into topics relevant to the assessment of our clients, what was most encouraging was the information provided about new areas of development and the research projects being undertaken. These projects may very well change the way that patients are treated in future; it offers hope for our clients and their families.
What is the main client group that Shine lawyers work with?
We represent everyday Australians who have had their lives turned upside through no fault of their own. We work to restore justice by acting for these people in damages based litigation claims. Almost ten years ago, our firm recognised that there was a gap in the provision of legal advocacy where people were falling through the cracks and the true significance of their condition was not properly understood.
Through our work, we identified the significant differences amongst complex and major claims, and the specialised attention they required. The firm then made the decision to establish a legal team dedicated to running claims for individuals who’ve suffered a traumatic brain incident.
What do you see as the major challenges facing your clients?
There are two significant challenges that we see our clients facing:
- Access to the right specialists - Through our work, we’ve seen that the needs of people who have suffered an ABI are unique and require specialist care from professionals whose work is dedicated to this field. It is essential that our clients have the opportunity to see the right rehabilitation and legal specialists early to maximise their chances for an optimal recovery and ensure all pertinent evidence is obtained in a timely manner.
- Insurance battles - For many of our clients, the trauma of sustaining an ABI can be just the beginning. We see many families suffering after the primary income earner is significantly injured, unable to work or meet expenses and on top of this is fighting with an insurer about what is fair and reasonable with respect to their rehabilitation requirements.
Connecting We connect our clients with providers who truly understand how to assess and treat people suffering with head injuries. It is through our attendance at ASSBI conferences and other events that we are able to make those meaningful connections for the benefits of our clients.
Keeping the insurers honest We ensure that insurance companies comply with their legal and ethical obligations to fund Australians’ reasonable and appropriate rehabilitation and treatment needs. We fight to ensure that any reasonable recommendations made by treatment providers are implemented by the insurers.
Minimising stress We care about our clients and their families and aim to do whatever we can to help minimise the stress and anxiety that is commonly experienced by our clients when their lives are turned upside down. We attempt to simplify the process for them and ease as much of the burden as possible.
What prompted you to be interested in forming a partnership with ASSBI?
Our partnership with ASSBI allows us to better understand the impact that head injuries have on our clients. It also allows us to connect with the people that can make a difference in our clients’ lives – whether that be from a treatment perspective or an assessment perspective, we want to know who the leaders are in this area and who is best-placed to help our clients.
At times, we’ve seen our clients receiving treatment from people who haven’t properly understood the complexities and difficulties that can come with an ABI. This can make things even more difficult and makes it even more important for us to connect our clients with people who can assist them and understand what they’re going through.
Through our partnership with ASSBI, we aim to provide our clients with access to a holistic team of experts that can help them through this time and give them the best possible chance of recovering their health and financial stability.
Written by Shine Lawyers. Last modified: December 1, 2015.