What you need to know about accidents before April 1, 2019:

Free Book

Winning Your B.C. Injury Claim:
How to Successfully Navigate the ICBC Minefield

Click HERE to get your copy and learn more.
This book does not apply to accidents which occurred on or after April 1, 2019.

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Watch my videos on:

  • How to survive financially after an accident
  • How to prepare for your first meeting with ICBC

Click HERE to go to the Video Tutorials page if your accident occurred before April 1, 2019.


Click to claim our Free Book on How To Win Your ICBC Claim

1. You are not prepared for your first meeting with an ICBC adjuster. avoid mistakes with your icbc claim

Before you see an ICBC adjuster, contact the office of your doctor, physiotherapist or chiropractor to confirm the dates that you received related treatment before the accident. This will ensure that you do not misstate your previous medical problems in the statement the adjuster will prepare and ask you to sign. If you think you may be partly at fault for the accident, speak to a lawyer in our Surrey head office so he or she can prepare you for your interview with the ICBC adjuster. Failure to do this could severely jeopardize your claim.
See: Initially Meeting with an ICBC Adjuster

2. Your doctor does not examine you regularly after your accident.

It is extremely important that your doctor examine you at least once per month during your period of significant pain.
See: What You Need from Medical Experts to Prove Your ICBC Claim

3. After your accident, you are examined by a series of doctors in a walk-in clinic.

Try to find a family doctor. If you can't find one, choose one doctor at a walk-in clinic and see only that doctor. Check to see what shifts that doctor works.

4. When you attend an ICBC-appointed doctor, you do not see your own medical specialist.

ICBC uses the same medical specialists all the time. The report from such a specialist may well harm your claim. You won't know this because ICBC will not give it to you. Seek legal advice if ICBC asks you to see its chosen specialist.
See: Doctors ICBC Wants You to See

5. You agree with ICBC to an excessive reduction of your past wage loss claim from gross to net.

ICBC will often claim a deduction of 30% to arrive at net; however, this deduction is usually much less. Agree to only a small deduction for income tax and EI premiums.
See: Past Loss Income

6. You do not get all the treatment you need.

ICBC often stops funding treatment even though the doctor thinks this would be beneficial. Consider talking to a lawyer about alternative ways to fund the treatment you need.

7. ICBC does not reimburse you monthly for your physiotherapist or chiropractor user fees.

ICBC frequently reimburses user fees monthly. Insist that your adjuster do this for you.
See: ICBC Payment for the Cost of Treatment

8. You do not obtain the household help you need.

If your doctor documents that you are unable to do most of your household chores, ICBC is required to fund up to $145 per week for household assistance. If your doctor agrees that you are unable to do some of your household chores, you may claim at settlement or court the assistance you received (even if you didn't pay for it), but it should be documented.
See: ICBC Helping with the Cost of Household Chores

9. You fail to obtain a Work Capacity Evaluation that simulates the demands of your job.

A Work Capacity Evaluation can prove your limitations regarding your ability to work and perform household chores. At some point, ICBC will insist that you are able to work full time, or your finances may force you to return to work. In these situations, this assessment can be invaluable. A lawyer will arrange and pay for a Work Capacity Evaluation.
See: Work Capacity Evaluators to Prove You Can't Do Your Job

10. You do not keep a regular pain journal.

If you don't recover quickly from your injury, an ICBC lawyer may eventually ask you questions about your pain over time. If you haven't kept a regular pain journal, this information will be very difficult for you to provide.
See: Keeping a Pain Diary for Your ICBC Claim

11. You were unable to identify the driver of the vehicle that caused your accident.

ICBC has very strict requirements for identifying the driver who caused your accident. If these requirements aren't met, it is likely that your entire claim will be destroyed.
See: Hit and Run Claim Procedures if the Other Driver Fled the Scene

12. If a friend or relative caused the accident, you do not want to claim for your injuries.

You may be concerned that your friend or relative will lose their safe driving discount if you claim for your injuries. ICBC will reduce the discount anyway, based on the repair cost to the other vehicle. In reality, your claim for damages is with ICBC, under your friend or relative's insurance.

13. You settle too early hoping that you will recover from your pain and limitations in the near future.

A Lower Mainland physician who limits his practice to treating patients with musculoskeletal injuries wrote in a report the following about the medical literature in support of the less than optimistic prognosis that he gave to our client about the future problems and work limitations he may have from his whiplash type injury:

PROGNOSIS: As it is now more than two and a half years since his motor vehicle accident of 2008 and Mr. xxx continues to experience episodic pain and dysfunction, I cannot say with certainty when, if ever, he can expect a complete resolution of his symptoms.

A review of the current automotive literature reveals that there are many studies to suggest that a significant number of patients injured in mva's continue to have ongoing symptomatology for years. I enclose a copy of twenty such studies as documented by Nordhoff in his textbook entitled "MOTOR VEHICLE COLLISION INJURIES, SECOND EDITION".

I am familiar with the study by Squires(a British orthopedic surgeon) who followed forty such patients for over fourteen years. I also enclose a copy of that study for your perusal.

An editorial by Carette in the NEW ENGLAND JOURNAL OF MEDICINE sums up what I believe to be the current thinking on whiplash: "although the majority of whiplash patients become asymptomatic in a matter of weeks to a few months, twenty to forty percent experience symptoms that are sometimes debilitating and persist for years. The reality is that some patients with a whiplash injury do not recover completely", Carette, "Whiplash Injury and Chronic Neck Pain".

A recent review article which I consider to be excellent by Gargan and Bannister (British orthopedic surgeons) in the British Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery (a well respected and peer reviewed journal) concluded "most patients who are symptomatic after three months remain so indefinitely". In my opinion this data suggests a guarded prognosis for any further recovery for Mr. xxx. It is my opinion that Mr. xxx will continue to experience episodic flare ups of his condition in the future. These flare ups will require further treatment by health care practitioners such as physiotherapist, massage therapists or chiropractors. I believe Mr. xxx will remain precluded by his condition from seeking any occupation that would require repeated lifting and bending, heavy manual work or challenging overhead work.

We would be pleased to email PDF's of these articles to you at your request. Please state that you would like the articles on the long term results of some whiplash injuries.

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