In this ICBC Settlement case(Johnson v. Wells) the ICBC adjuster claims the two car accidents were settled for $7,5000 whilst the personal injury lawyer for the claimant says he only represented the claimant for the first car accident, so only the first accident was settled. the injury claimant swore that he never hired his injury lawyer for the second car accident. I have discussed settling your claim with ICBC before and this case illustrates how communications with the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia, ICBC, can become confused, confusing and ultimately inconsistent.
The injury claimant was involved in two motor vehicle accidents for which he claims personal injury. Ms. Patricia Johnston, an adjuster for ICBC swore in her affidavit that she spoke to the claimant’s personal injury lawyer who agreed to settle the two car accident claims. Adjuster Johnston goes on to say in her affidavit that the personal injury lawyer agreed to a settlement of both files for $7,500 with a B.C. Ferries release to be signed. In support of this evidence she produced a note of hers from her file which said in part “… agrees to accept $7,500 for both claims with BC Ferries release …”.
The essence of a B.C. Ferries release was that in return for the settlement the injury claimant agreed to assume any liability imposed upon the settling ICBC by any judgment in the lawsuit and any damages associated with that liability, even if the amount of damages attributed to ICBC’s liability exceeds the amount that ICBC paid to the claimant in settlement.
The lawyer representing the injury claimant swore in his affidavit that he had no specific recollection of being hired by the claimant for the second accident and had no recollection of ever seeking instructions from the claimant on the second accident.
The judge refused to order that the ICBC injury cases were settled and concluded that the claimant’s application to cross-examine the ICBC adjuster on her affidavit should definitely be allowed. Posted by Mr. Renn A. Holness
Issue: Should the court in British Columbia refuse to enforce unclear ICBC settlements?