We take on ICBC/CRT cases and will fight for you to ensure you get fair compensation. We take on ICBC injury cases, regardless of the magnitude, and fight for our client’s rights.

What are the New Rules?

The new law regarding a cap of $5,500.00 for pain and suffering (soft tissue injuries) will not affect any car accident that occurred before April 1, 2019. So if you accident occurred before this date, the new rules will not apply to your case.

A cap of $5,500.00 for pain and suffering (soft tissue injuries) will apply to auto accident claims that occur after April 1, 2019. The $5,500.00 soft tissue injury cap is only for pain and suffering. You are still entitled to claim for wage loss, future capacity, and out of pocket expenses on top of your pain and suffering claim. Under the old rules there was no monetary cap for pain and suffering. Under the new rules unless you can prove that your injury is not minor, your case will fall within the jurisdiction of the Civil Resolution Tribunal (CRT).

The Civil Resolution Tribunal (CRT) now has jurisdiction over motor vehicle accident claims where the Claimant has suffered minor injuries. If possible we will fight to get your case out of the minor injury designation.

Is it Worth Hiring a Lawyer if Your Injury is Minor?

Yes it is still worth hiring a lawyer if your injury is minor. Dealing with the ICBC CRT process can be challenging as there are a number of rules and important deadlines that need to be followed. If you miss a step along the way, your claim can be denied. Dealing with an ICBC adjuster can also be complicated as their interests are not to protect your rights, but rather to save ICBC money. So they will do whatever it takes to pay you the least amount possible and close your claim as quickly as possible. Remember, just because there is a cap of $5,500.00 for your pain and suffering claim, it doesn’t mean that ICBC will automatically give you $5,500.00. We will need to fight for it. If you are injured in an accident, and if your injury is minor, call us today to discuss your options.  

Who Makes the Decision Regarding Your Claim

For motor vehicle accidents on or after April 1, 2019 the Civil Resolution Tribunal (CRT) will make decisions on the following matters:

  • The determination that an injury is a minor injury or not
  • The entitlement to receive accident benefits claimed
  • Decisions around who is responsible for the crash
  • Settlement amounts for all injury claims below $50,000.   

The Civil Resolution Tribunal (CRT) has jurisdiction over minor injuries sustained due to a motor vehicle accident that occurred in British Columbia on or after April 1, 2019. This means that any disputes over minor injury claims cannot be resolved in Supreme Court, unless you can prove your injuries are not “minor”.

The CRT has jurisdiction on motor vehicle accident claims up to $50,000. Claims exceeding $50,000 will be deferred to the courts.  The onus is on the claimant to provide substantial evidence that his or her claim will likely exceed $50,000. If the dispute is denied by the CRT, the claimant will be subject to the new $5,500 limit on pain and suffering awards for minor injuries. The $5,500 cap is only for pain and suffering. You are still entitled to claim for other heads of damages such as wage loss, loss of earning capacity, and special damages (out of pocket expenses).

DEFINITION OF “MINOR INJURY” IN THE INSURANCE VEHICLE ACT

“minor injury” means a physical or mental injury, whether or not chronic, that

(a) subject to subsection (2), does not result in a serious impairment or a permanent serious disfigurement of the claimant, and

(b) is one of the following:

(i) an abrasion, a contusion, a laceration, a sprain or a strain;

(ii) a pain syndrome;

(iii) a psychological or psychiatric condition;

(iv) a prescribed injury or an injury in a prescribed type or class of injury;

Examples of a “Minor Injury”

  • Abrasion
  • Contusion
  • Laceration
  • Strain – Includes 1st and 2nd degree strains but excludes 3rd degree which include torn muscles
  • Spain – Includes 1st and 2nd degree sprains but excludes 3rd degree which include torn ligaments
  • Temporomandibular Joint Disorder (TMJ/Jaw)
  • Pain Syndrome – means a syndrome or disorder or other clinical condition associated with pain, including pain that is not resolved within 3 months
  • Whiplash Associated Disorder (WAD) – includes WAD 1 or 2, but excludes WAD 3 or 4, which involve neurological symptoms, fractures or dislocations of the spine
  • Psychological and psychiatric conditions – which do not result in an incapacity beyond 16 weeks
  • Concussion – which does not result in an incapacity beyond 16 weeks

Serious impairment means a physical or mental impairment that is not resolved within 12 months, or another prescribed period, if any, after the date of an accident, and meets prescribed criteria

“Prescribed criteria” of serious impairment includes the following:

Affects the claimants/patient’s: (1) employment; (2) training/education; or (3) activities of daily living

Primarily caused by the accident and

Ongoing since the accident; AND

Impairment must not be expected to improve substantially.

After April 1, 2019 ICBC should be fully funding your treatments. You shouldn’t be paying anything out of pocket for treatments.  ICBC will only fund and reimburse treatment pursuant to the rates below:

ICBC Treatment Funding Per Session 

Acupuncture $88
Chiropractic $53
Counselling $120
Kinesiology $78
Massage Therapy $80
Physiotherapy $79
Psychology $195

We recommend finding a treatment provider who charges a maximum of the prescribed amount per session and bills this amount directly to ICBC. If you treat at treatment practitioners who are charging higher rates than the prescribed rates, you will likely not be receiving reimbursement from ICBC for any amount in excess of the prescribed rates.

All receipts for medical treatment, equipment, and other out-of-pocket expenses (including prescriptions, treatment sessions, medical equipment) must be submitted to ICBC within 60 days of the treatment or purchase date or it may not be reimbursed.