The Higgerty Law Difference – Using A Trauma Informed Process In Law

Higgerty LawClass Action Lawsuits, New RCMP Class Action


Principal Counsel, Mr. Patrick B. Higgerty Q.C, and Lead Claimant Counsel, Jill Taylor discuss the Higgerty Law difference and how they can help claimants in this innovative approach.

Higgerty Law has established a reputation for being technologically advanced and client focussed. Their newest initiative is the implementation of a “Trauma Informed” process to assist claimants in the RCMP (Non-member) Class Action. This is a leading-edge client centred approach.

Higgerty Law’s all-female team for processing RCMP Class Action Claims is led by lawyer and former nurse Jill Taylor. Jill is borrowing best practices from her healthcare experience to protect and assist women who may be entitled to compensation under the terms of the settlement. Taylor was a registered nurse for 14 years prior to her legal career.

Trauma Informed Process is not widely used in a legal context, particularly in Canada. Yet, it is known that victims of crime, domestic violence, and sexual or gender harassment, (as in the RCMP case) can easily be re-traumatized by a traditional legal approach.

Trauma Informed Care is not new in health care. It was developed following the second world war in response to the vast number of soldiers suffering trauma related injury. Since then, it has been widely used in health care and counseling and generalized for use in other service industry. The basic premise is – Do No Harm. To assist claimants in re-telling their experience and answering sometimes intrusive questions, the Higgerty Law Team process includes the basic principles of Trauma-informed care: safety, choice, collaboration, trust and empowerment.

Each of our claimants will be assigned a Primary Care Advocate (“PCA”) to walk them through their experience. PCA’s have backgrounds in nursing and counselling, but primarily in social work. Claimants will be in control of the re-telling of their experience and if they require support from counsellors, this support will be provided. Higgerty Law has psychologists on their team.

The PCA and Claimant will then work with paralegals who will have participated in the trauma informed process training developed and delivered by Jill and team. They will also be sensitive to the issues related to trauma and the client centered service requirements.

Higgerty Law and Klein Lawyers are Co-Counsel on the $100-million Federal Court RCMP class action settlement announced July 8 for women who have worked in certain non-police positions and were supervised or managed by the RCMP or worked in a RCMP controlled workplaces since 1974 and suffered gender or sexual orientation-based harassment or discrimination by RCMP personnel. While not admitting liability, the RCMP has agreed to a settlement of this lawsuit. (For further information on this settlement, go to newrcmpclassaction.com)

Higgerty Law is registering claimants across Canada to participate in the settlement. The settlement covers all RCMP workplace locations throughout Canada, including detachments for 154 municipal policing agreements and many more hundreds of other detachments across Canada, with an estimated class of 41,200 potential claimants. Settlement levels range from $10,000 to $220,000. The settlement is set for a Court Approval hearing on October 17, 2019 in Federal Court in Vancouver.

For more information please contact Higgerty Law’s Lead Claimants Counsel Jill Taylor:

Higgerty Law (higgertylaw.ca)
Phone: (403) 503-8888 TF: 1-888-699-7826