We always offer FREE initial consultations and are happy to answer your questions by email or by phone. Please call our ICBC claims head office in Surrey at 604 576 5400, or you can speak to any of our personal injury lawyers at our Vancouver, Kelowna, or Fort St. John offices by calling toll free 1-877-602-9900 and have our personal injury lawyers explain the different types of ICBC Settlements.
Best Lawyer Tips – What Kind of Settlement Am I Entitled To When I Have Been Injured In A Car Accident?
Our Surrey personal injury ICBC lawyers know that if you have been injured by the negligence of another driver you may be entitled to significant compensation, but you may need someone to explain ICBC settlements.
Please be advised that time limits apply and it is usually in your best interests to talk to a lawyer BEFORE meeting with or giving ICBC a statement concerning the accident or your injuries, although we can still help even if you have already spoken to ICBC.
In order for you to receive the maximum possible amount for your injuries, especially because of the negligence of somebody else – such as another driver, the operator of a bus or taxi, or even a pedestrian or cyclist – you or your lawyer will have to provide evidence that the accident was caused (in whole or in part), and the injuries you sustained were directly connected to, the defendant’s negligence.
Negligence can apply when somebody does something careless that results in your injury, or also if they fail to do something that might have prevented your injury. Since it is almost always impossible to predict with 100% certainty what “might have happened” if the other person had acted differently the Court will look at all the evidence presented to it and then determine on a “balance of probabilities” whether or not negligence affected the outcome. All of this can be very tricky. It is important to carefully analyze all of the evidence to make sure it presents a complete picture of what happened. It is also important to make sure the evidence is presented in such a way that fully explains to the judge or jury why the other person could have, and should have, acted differently.
Our experienced team of BC personal injury lawyers are available across British Columbia with offices in Surrey, Vancouver, Kelowna and Fort St John to explain negligence and how it might affect your ICBC claim. Regardless of whether your injuries are caused by negligence or just a regular accident, there are several types of compensation you might receive.
Income And Wage Loss
Loss of income-earning capacity is commonly referred to as past and future loss of income. Past wage loss means your actual lost income from the date of accident until the actual trial or settlement. Future wage loss applies to income you would have normally received plus any loss or diminshment to your earning potential, including lost opportunities that could or would occur after the trial or settlement. “Loss of opportunity” can mean that you have been denied the opportunity to work or develop a specific career or ability as result of the accident, (as opposed to losing wages from a job that you already had).
Pain and Suffering
The purpose of pain and suffering awards, also known as non-pecuniary damages, is to compensate you for pain, suffering, and for your loss of enjoyment of life. This can include:
-physical pain and suffering, disability and/or reduced functioning -psychological injuries and chronic pain -mild traumatic brain injury
-nervous shock or psychiatric injury
The purpose of the pain and suffering award is to allow you to find other sources of satisfaction to substitute for those you have lost. This money award is intended to be used by you to make your life more bearable and to provide reasonable compensation for your intangible losses.
Cost of Future Care
You may also need medical and other professional care to deal with injuries that have been suffered. The test for determining the appropriate award is based on the medical evidence presented to the Court. You must show that there is a medical justification for claims for cost of future care; and also that the claim is reasonable.
Loss of Housekeeping Capacity
An additional award can be made to you to recognize a loss of or diminished capacity to take care of your household. This is determined by estimating the cost of employing a domestic helper for the estimated time frame of your disability. Evidence must be presented to prove the replacement cost of housekeeping services, even if family members are going to be the ones to perform the extra duties. The Court may also award damages for both past and future homemaking capacity, even if you are not prevented from undertaking most day-to-day activities.
Family Member Help
Claims for household duties, nursing, and other services rendered by your immediate family are allowed when you establish the need for such services as a consequence of the injury. You must prove:
(a) the family member providing the services suffered financial loss because of the time and effort that went into performing those duties; or
(b) the family member’s efforts resulted in replacing paid housekeeping expenses
Management Fees For Award
An ICBC personal injury award for the cost of future care or for the loss of future earning capacity will normally involve an estimate of a periodic sum of annual losses prorated over the duration of the injury. Many of our clients need professional help to properly invest their significant personal injury awards so that the money will last for as long as possible and continue to provide the necessary care. In such circumstances, the Court may award you additional money in order to pay for you to have a professional financial manager or investment counselor. The Supreme Court of Canada explains the basis of a management fee award as follows:
…the defendant must take the plaintiff as he finds him, including his state of intelligence. Whether this is low by reason of the injuries complained of or its natural state, a management fee or an investment counseling fee should be awarded if the plaintiff’s level of intelligence is such that he is either unable to manage his affairs or lacks the acumen to invest funds awarded for future care so as to produce the requisite state of return.
Addition awards for transportation to/from treatment, wage losses to family members taking care of you, vehicle damages, accelerated depreciation on a repaired vehicle, damaged clothing or items, and living residence modifications can also be made by the Court.
The head of our Surrey and BC personal injury lawyer team has more than a decade of experience. Our ICBC claims lawyer team are based out of our Surrey office and can be reached directly at 604 576 5400, or you can use our toll free number at 1-877-602-9900, or our convenient online form to set up a free initial consultation at any of our 4 offices.
Please note that this summary is very general in nature and likely does not replace or eliminate the need for you to discuss the specifics of your case with a lawyer immediately – especially before discussing your case with ICBC.
We always offer FREE initial consultations and are happy to answer your questions by email or by phone. Please call our ICBC claims main office in Surrey at 604-576-5400, or you can speak to any of our personal injury lawyers at our Vancouver, Kelowna, or Fort St. John offices by calling toll free 1-877-602-9900.