ICBC Law

BC Injury Law and ICBC Claims Blog

Erik MagrakenThis Blog is authored by British Columbia ICBC injury claims lawyer Erik Magraken. Erik is a partner with the British Columbia personal injury law-firm MacIsaac & Company. He restricts his practice exclusively to plaintiff-only personal injury claims with a particular emphasis on ICBC injury claims involving orthopaedic injuries and complex soft tissue injuries. Please visit often for the latest developments in matters concerning BC personal injury claims and ICBC claims

Erik Magraken does not work for and is not affiliated in any way with the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia (ICBC). Please note that this blog is for information only and is not claim-specific legal advice.  Erik can only provide legal advice to clients. Please click here to arrange a free consultation.

Posts Tagged ‘icbc claims lawyer erik magraken’

$35,000 Pain and Suffering Awarded to Injured Cyclist

June 2nd, 2008

In reasons for judgement released today, Madam Justice Boyd of the BC Supreme Court awarded a 53 year old paramedic $35,000 non-pecuniary damages (pain and suffering) as compensatory damages for a shoulder injury.

The Plaintiff was injured in Surrey, BC when his bicycle struck an SUV that turned left in front of the Plaintiff as he tried to clear an intersection. The collision was significant in that the bicycle struck the right front passenger side wheel area of the SUV, causing the plaintiff to fly over the hood of the vehicle and land some distance away.

Both Liability (fault) and quantum (value of loss) were at issue in this ICBC claim that proceeded to trial.

The court held that the driver of the SUV was 100% responsible for this BC motor vehicle accident.

The court found that “the plaintiff was an experienced trained cyclist, very much familiar with the challenges of urban vehicular travel.” The court summarized the findings of fault at paragraph 35 of the judgement where it was held that :

[35] Thus, in all of the circumstances, I find that the plaintiff was travelling lawfully along 140th Street at Laurel Drive when the defendant turned into his path. The defendant negligently failed to ensure he could complete his left hand turn without first ensuring before doing so that there was no traffic approaching so closely as to constitute an immediate hazard, thus breaching s. 174 of the Act. By the same token I find the plaintiff had no opportunity to avoid the collision and that accordingly he was not contributorily negligent.

The Plaintiff’s injuries were quite significant but he fortunately went on to make a ‘remarkable’ recovery. The most serious injury was to the Plaintiff’s right shoulder. The court held that

Relying on Dr. Boyle’s report, I am satisfied that the plaintiff’s shoulder injury has not resolved entirely and that he faces the likelihood of chronic recurring discomfort. Further, there is a risk of his symptoms progressing, perhaps some day necessitating arthroscopic surgery. Based on the last paragraph above, I conclude that while the progression of the symptoms is not likely to occur within the next 2-3 years, there is indeed a possibility this progression of symptoms may occur during the plaintiff’s retirement years, exposing him to a period of reduced capacity and perhaps ultimately to surgery. “

The court awarded damages as follows:

1. Non-pecuniary damages: $35,000

2. Loss of income: $8,750.36

3. Special damages: $809.33

Do you have questions about an ICBC injury claim involving injuries to a cyclist or questions about the icbc settlement process? If so click here to arrange a free consultation with icbc claims lawyer Erik Magraken.


BC Supreme Court Awards $16,324 For Soft Tissue Injuries in an LVI Accident

May 27th, 2008

In brief reasons for judgement released today The Honourable Mr. Justice Masuhara awarded a Plaintiff just over $16,000 in compensation for injuries sustained in a 2006 motor vehicle accident.

The collision occured in Surrey, BC in the evening of February 13, 2006. The Plaintiff’s vehicle, a 1996 Nissan, was stopped at a traffic light. The Defendant, driving a 1998 Astro, rear-ended the Plaintiff’s vehicle.

The Plaintiff stated that he injured his lower right back, right neck and right shoulder as a result of the BC car accident. The Plaintiff attended a total of 24 massage therapy sessions and had other treatments such as ultrasound, hot pads, electrical stimulations, massage therapy and stretching exercises.

The matter proceeded to trial and was heard in two days as a Rule 66 Fast Track trial.

This trial could be fairly characterized as a typical ICBC Low Velocity Impact (LVI) claim. That is, where the vehicle damage is slight ICBC Claims lawyers defending such actions typically make a point of bringing this fact to the courts attention hoping that the court will find that ‘no compensible’ injuries occurred.

The Plaintiff used good judgement, in my opinion, in admitting the fact that the vehicle damage cost little money to repair and did not challenge this fact.

In yet another example of our BC courts paying no mind to the ICBC LVI policy, Mr. Justice Masuhara stated that “I have taken into consideration the principle that the level of vehicle damage does not correlate to the level of injury a plaintiff has sustained.”

Medical evidence was led that the Plaintiff sustained injuries along his right paracervical and bilateral paralumbar muscles. These were described as a “strain/spasm”.

The court accepted the Plaintiff was injured in this collision. Specifically that “the collision was a low speed collision and that (the Plaintiff) suffered minor soft tissue injuries to his neck, shoulder and back.” The court found that these ‘minor soft tissue injuries’ resolved withing 14 months and any complaints after that time were ‘residual‘.

In the end $16,000 was awarded for non-pecuniary damages (pain and suffering) and out of pocket expenses for massage therapy and physiotherapy treatments were calculated as ‘special damages’.

Do you have questions about an LVI denial from ICBC or a claim involving soft tissue injuries? If so click here to arrange a free consultation with ICBC claims lawyer Erik Magraken.


Show Me The Money! ICBC and High Billing Physicians

May 10th, 2008

One of the benefits of having a crown corporation monopoly insurer (ICBC) in BC is that they must file annual reports accessible to members of the public. These annual reports can be found on-line and contain volumes of information regarding ICBC and their financial status.

One of the most interesting facts published annually by ICBC is the amount of money they pay ‘expert physicians’ who do work on ICBC’s behalf. This information is known to most ICBC claims lawyers and I thought some of my readers would be interested in this data as well.

As of the writing of this post the 2007 annual report is not available but the 2006 report is. Below is a list of some of the physicians who billed significant amounts to ICBC for their services in 2006. I will be sure to publish the highlight physician billings from ICBC’s 2007 report once available.

Dr. Kevein Favero (Orthopedic Surgeon, Langley, BC): $245,483

Dr. N. K. Reebye (Physical Medecine and Rebabilitation, New Westminster): $275,336

Dr. Peter M. Rees (Neurologist, Burnaby): $225,330

Dr. J. F Schweigel (Orthopedic Surgeon) : $796,012

Dr. D. M. Laidlow: (Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Westbank) $101,539

Dr. Robert W. McGraw: (Orthopedic Surgoen, Vancouver) $253,240

Dr. T O’Farrell: (Orthopedic Surgoen, Kelowna) $111,162

Dr. James Warren: (Orthopedic Surgoen, Victoria) $87,207

Dr. O. M. Sovio: (Orthopedic Surgeon, Abbotsford) $203,892

Dr. H. Davis: (Psychiatrist, Vancouver) $113,950

Dr. Marc Boyle (Orthopaedic Surgeon, North Vancouver) $287,860

Dr. Paul Bishop (Vancouver, BC) $321,137

Dr. Mark Crossman (Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Vancouver) $111,441

Dr. I. G. Dommisse (Orhopaedic Surgoen, New Westminster) $194,612

Dr. H. E. Hawk (Orthopedic Surgeon, Vancouver) $336,650