Vancouver Immigration And Cross-Border Injury Law Blog

Cross-border personal injury: Whiplash can cause long-term harm

A significant percentage of car accident victims suffer whiplash injuries as the result of the rapid movement of the head during a crash. The problem with these injuries is that they are often hidden, and if they are not diagnosed promptly, the consequences can cause long-term health problems. Sometimes, recovering damages could be a significant challenge. When such an accident occurs during a trip from Vancouver to Seattle, the case could be a lot more complicated if it involves a cross-border personal injury.

Contrary to what most people believe, whiplash injuries cause more lower back injuries than neck injuries -- especially when the impact of the crash is from the rear of the vehicle. While many whiplash injuries are mild enough to heal themselves within months, more than one in five victims continue to suffer for many years. The consequences could include chronic pain, weakness and the inability to move freely. Some victims' suffering continues for the remainder of their lives, even leaving them unable to return to work.

How does US immigration deal with pets of snowbirds?

For most people in British Columbia, their dogs, cats, parrots and other pets are seen as members of the household. So how much trouble is it for snowbirds to take their beloved pets along on their annual journey south? Planning and organizing the trip could be slightly more complicated when travelling with pets, but help is available when it comes to dealing with the U.S. immigration laws.

Even though the pets are not imported, the different U.S. agencies treat them similarly. These include the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Also, some states have more requirements that could even include quarantine.

Winter driving errors can cause cross-border personal injury

Drivers between Vancouver and Seattle will always face crash risks, with the chances increased over the winter months. Dealing with the consequences of a car accident that caused cross-border personal injury could be complicated. Safety authorities recommend that drivers who lack confidence driving in conditions that could include black ice and snow should avoid driving if possible.

Drivers who feel confident driving in adverse weather must still plan ahead and adjust their driving techniques to keep them safe on slippery roads. Knowing the expected weather conditions will prepare them. Safety authorities remind drivers of the fact that speed limits are posted for perfect conditions, and slowing down while keeping safe following distances is crucial to avoid crashes on winter roads.

US immigration bans cause concern for snowbirds

Every year, thousands of Canadians, including many from British Columbia, lock up their homes and flee to warmer climates south of the border. For many of these snowbirds, they have undertaken this trip for many years. However, the increased number of expedited removals and bans issued by the U.S. immigration officials at the border should be cause for concern.

Snowbirds are advised to make sure they have documented proof to show that they intend to return to Canada within the prescribed period, and have no intentions to remain in the United States. Employment, homeownership and utility bills might be sufficient proof of a plan to return. It is also crucial to be able to show that they own property in the U.S. or have a copy of a rental agreement.

Cross-border personal injury can have long-term consequences

So many British Columbia residents take frequent trips south of the border to go shopping, take in a live show or for other reasons. But sometimes it is easy to forget that any accident that causes injuries on the other side of the border will involve the legal and insurance systems of the two countries. Dealing with cross-border personal injury claims can be a daunting prospect.

Such claims can be even more complicated if injuries have long-term consequences, such as chronic pain. Car accident injuries can cause specific nerves to send pain signals to the brain. Occasionally these nerves are damaged in a way that causes them to continue sending pain signals to the brain for months or even years after the accident.

US immigration appears to be playing the guessing game

Although there have been no policy changes, Canadians trying to cross the border are reportedly turned away much more frequently than before. Residents of British Columbia and other provinces who have travelled to the United States on frequent previous occasions are now refused entry for unknown reasons. Some Canadians have even reported receiving five-year bans with no explanations as to the reasons.

These actions are called expedited removals, one of which involved a British Columbia tree planter who presented credit card information, salary stubs and cellphone bills among her documentation. Upon her first attempt to cross the border, she was refused entry. When she tried again at a different border post, she received a five-year ban.

Risks of cross-border personal injury when driving in Seattle

Whenever Vancouver residents take trips to Seattle for shopping or other purposes, they have to deal with challenging circumstances. The risks of suffering cross-border personal injury is significant, and the legal consequences can be complicated. Travel authorities say Seattle is frequently listed as one of the cities with the worst traffic conditions in the United States.

Visiting drivers are advised to time their driving in Seattle to occur between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. Rush hour puts out-of-town visitors at risk of being caught in stressful situations as drivers get frustrated while merging with other traffic on and off the city's highways. Unsafe merging is reported to be one of the most significant hazards on Seattle roads.

US immigration laws confuse Canadians refused entry into USA

Residents of Vancouver have, until recently, had few problems crossing the border from British Columbia to visit friends or family in Seattle. U.S. immigration lawyers in Vancouver say they have noticed an increase in incidents in which residents of Canada are denied entry and even banned from entering the U.S. One case involves a Vancouver woman who was refused entry and told to get a visa before trying to cross the border again.

Reportedly, the woman and her partner arrived at the border crossing on their way to Seattle for a visit with her godfather. She reports being held and questioned for almost five hours. The woman asserts that she has no criminal record and that she had been back and forth across the border frequently in the past with no problems. Although the border agents did not deny entry to the woman's partner, they did go through both of their wallets and cell phones.

Cross-border personal injury: The impact of raised speed limits

A professor at the University of British Columbia researched the effect of increased speed limits on Canadian highways. The outcome of the research led to the British Columbia government lowering the speed limit on 570 kilometres of the 1,300-kilometre section of a road that had been raised by 10 km/h in 2014. The professor determined that the 10 km/h increase did not necessarily lead to more accidents, but it did lead to more severe injuries when accidents occurred. If American citizens were involved in any of those accidents, they could have a need for a cross-border personal injury claim.

According to the researcher, by increasing the speed limit, authorities aimed to improve road safety by limiting the disparity between fast and slow vehicles. They assumed that drivers who exceed the existing limit would continue driving at the same speed and slower drivers would drive a bit faster. Sadly, instead of improving safety, the opposite happened.

US immigration: E2 Treaty Investor Visas are useful options

Canada is one of the E2 Treaty Investor Visa Countries, which enables investors from British Columbia or other Canadian provinces or territories to apply for E2 visas. Under U.S. immigration laws, an E2 Visa allows investors to work and live in the U.S. while they develop and direct businesses in the United States. If an E2 Visa is obtained, executives, essential skill employees and management of the company are allowed entry.

Large companies may get permission to send executive-level employees and management to establish and direct the business in the U.S. instead of business owners. Furthermore, employees of a Canadian investor may also be eligible for E2 visas. However, they must also be Canadian nationals to qualify.

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