No Crash, No Cash – Not True!
Everyone is back into the swing of things after the holidays, but with the unpredictable winter weather comes more instances of what everyone would describe as a “fender bender”.
If such an unfortunate collision has happened to you, you know the process well. You call “Dial a Claim” and report the accident and explain to the insurance company that it was not your fault. You make an appointment to take your car in for inspection and rest your stiff neck or back.
However, what if the next day, you wake up and your injuries have worsened? In such a case, you are entitled to claim with ICBC for fair compensation for your injuries.
ICBC has a policy called the Low Velocity Impact Policy (LVI) that will likely apply to your ‘fender bender’. ICBC deems your accident a LVI if the damage to the vehicle is relatively minor, based on their internal predetermined criteria.
The theory applied by ICBC is that if there was a minor accident how could someone suffer injury in that accident? According to ICBC, if the damage to your vehicle does not meet its threshold, ICBC says you were not injured in the accident and you are not entitled to compensation for your injuries. They will only pay for the repair of your vehicle.
LVI is an arbitrary internal ICBC policy. It is not the law.
Only a doctor can say whether or not you are injured.
There is no scientific relationship between the amount of damage sustained to a vehicle and the amount of damage sustained to a human body. Some individuals can walk away unhurt from very severe accidents whereas others may die. There are just too many facts that determine whether or not someone will be injured in an accident to correlate injury to the type of accident.
Therefore, if ICBC sends you a letter suggesting that your claim has been denied because of the minor nature the accident, you should not take that as being the answer to whether you have a personal injury claim against ICBC. If you are the innocent victim in the accident, it is highly recommended that you consult a lawyer before deciding to pursue or not pursue your injury claim.
You do not have to accept ICBC’s suggestion that you have no claim simply because the accident was minor. If you suffered injury in a car accident and you wish to pursue compensation, there are avenues available to do so. It just means ICBC will take a harder line and defend the claim more vigorously than other types of claims. You have to be prepared to go all the way to trial, if necessary.
A lawyer can help you to understand your rights following an accident. If you would like advice or for more information regarding such matters please contact Chahal Priddle LLP at 250-372-3233 to set up an appointment today