Cue v. Breitkreuz, 2010 BCSC 1323
In this “He said she said” personal injury case the motor vehicle accident injury claim was dismissed by the judge but the judge refused to award ICBC the costs of defending the claim. The injury claimant said the car accident occurred while he was stopped, waiting to make a left turn. The other driver said the claimant suddenly changed lanes, then stopped in front of him, leaving no opportunity to avoid the collision. The injury claimant and the ICBC insured gave conflicting evidence about how the car accident occurred and the judge preferred the evidence of the other driver. ICBC made a former offer to settle for $1.00 which the claimant refused to accept. As a result ICBC wanted the injury claimant to pay for their expenses and legal fees.
The court considered the matter within the framework of the Supreme Court Civil Rules, B.C. Reg. 168/2009. Rule 14-1(10) which reads:
(10) A plaintiff who recovers a sum within the jurisdiction of the Provincial Court under the Small Claims Act is not entitled to costs, other than disbursements, unless the court finds that there was sufficient reason for bringing the proceeding in the Supreme Court and so orders.
Before this claim was dismissed by the court ICBC did not want to agree that the case should be in small claims court. As a result the court found that ICBC should not be entitled to a contribution toward their legal fee. Posted by Mr. Renn A. Holness
Issue: Should an unsuccessful injury claimant have to pay ICBCs legal fees if they lose the case?