Are You a Victim of a Hit and Run Accident?
If so, you may be eligible to receive compensation through the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia, (“ICBC”). Coverage is extended to those riding on a motorcycle, ATV, bicycle, in a car or when a pedestrian but regardless of your circumstances, you are required to meet certain statutory obligations before receiving coverage.
According to the Insurance (Vehicle) Act, R.S.B.C.1996, c. 231, ICBC may be added as a defendant to a lawsuit where the driver causing bodily injury, death or property damage left the scene without providing their information. First, you will need to take all reasonable steps to ascertain who the unidentified driver was. This may include posting signs along the road where the accident occurred or publishing a notice in the local newspaper to search for any eyewitnesses. Second, you must notify the police within 24 to 48 hours to receive a file number and advise of the accident, injury and damage. Finally, you need to contact ICBC to provide a written statement as soon as reasonably practicable, or in any event, within six months of the accident. In some instances, you may be required to complete a sworn affidavit in the prescribed ‘CL-45′ format. In every instance, you will have a duty to cooperate with ICBC while their investigation continues.
Once your claim is accepted, you may be entitled to ‘Accident Benefits’ by way of initial medical treatment, medical rehabilitation expenses, weekly disability or wage loss benefits, death benefits, funeral expenses in addition to compensation for your injuries and property damage. The limitations on property damage will include a $750 deductible unless you purchased collision coverage with a lower deductible. The limit for Accident Benefits is $150,000 and in many cases your injury claim may be limited to $200,000.
It is worth knowing that ICBC has some of the best coverage available for legitimate victims receiving injury or sustaining damage in hit and run accidents. These claims can be difficult to prove however, and the courts have denied claimants who have not met their obligations. If you are involved or witness a hit and run accident, try to collect the licence plate number, make, model and driver description of the offending vehicle. Contact the police and ICBC to forward this information and provide your version of the accident. As a witness, this courtesy may greatly assist those who have been injured and would not otherwise receive their entitlement.
As published in Power Sport News, Vol. 11. No. 9
Written by Daryl Brown
If you or someone you know has been injured, call Daryl Brown directly at 604-612-6848 or toll free at 1-844-BIKE-LAW or send him an for the location nearest you and to receive your free initial consultation.
At Daryl Brown & Associates, you do not pay our fees unless we successfully recover an award. NO RECOVERY. NO FEE.