Trial Lawyers Association of British Columbia

Trial Lawyers Association of British Columbia

September 05, 2013 14:09 ET

TLABC Rejects ICBC's Remarks About Increased Costs

The Push for a Rate Hike is Not on Solid Ground

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwired - Sept. 5, 2013) - The Insurance Corporation of BC has blamed increased costs as the reason it needs to hike the insurance rates paid by the motoring public, but ICBC fails to minimize the cost of some claims right from the start, which not only drives up costs but also delays justice for innocent injured citizens.

"People injured in car crashes go to lawyers when they believe they are not being treated fairly by ICBC," said Dennis Hori, President of the Trial Lawyers Association of BC.

"Lawyers evaluate a client's case and make a reasonable offer to settle the matter with ICBC, without need of a trial," Hori explained. "We do not have any interest in delaying justice for our clients by making unreasonable demands. On the contrary, it is often the case that cases go to trial when ICBC makes offers that are unreasonably low." Hori's comments followed recent remarks made by ICBC spokesperson Adam Grossman (which played out in Vancouver-based print and radio media), whereby lawyer involvement and unreasonable demands were cited as reasons for increased costs.

Hori emphasized: "The great and fundamentally important aspect of our justice system is that we have an independent and unbiased court system upon which injured citizens and ICBC can rely upon to fairly resolve disputes, when it becomes necessary."

Increased efficiencies from start to finish would serve the public better than an unreasonable approach to settling claims. Drivers involved in motor-vehicle crashes become law clients if they believe ICBC isn't treating them fairly. Offers to settle a claim should be fair from the start. That would minimize costs, as claims can be closed sooner, promoting efficiency, rather than later when things needlessly become costly.

ICBC's application for a rate increase is dubious given the surpluses it operates with and, by extension, the government relies upon.

"On a highly positive note, our association applauds ICBC's current initiative to end distracted driving," Hori asserted. "Accident prevention is far and away the real key to minimizing costs associated with auto insurance."

Contact Information

  • Trial Lawyers Association of British Columbia
    Bentley Doyle
    604-682-5343 / 1-888-558-5222
    bentley@tlabc.org