Making a personal injury claim after a car accident in British Columbia can be, at best, confusing because there is usually more than one claim to be made with the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia, ICBC, and others. In addition to personal injury claims, you also have other potential claims such as collision coverage claims, private insurance claims, and government benefit claims. I have been a personal injury lawyer in British Columbia since 1995 and this article will address an injury claim against an at fault driver insured by ICBC. I have hyperlinked a few short videos below related to making ICBC claims.
1. Hiring a Personal Injury lawyer– This should be done as early as possible.  Many of the best personal injury lawyers in BC will agree to take a case based on a percentage of what is recovered. This means you will not pay more to hire a lawyer immediately.  The Law Society regulates lawyer fees so lawyers in BC have to charge a reasonable fee. Once you hire a lawyer you can rely on your lawyer to know how to deal with ICBC and you can focus on getting better.
If you are hiring a lawyer for a seriously injured family member this potentially can be done by the use of a representation agreement. Get a lawyer to explain this option to you.
2. Filing the Personal Injury Lawsuit– Typically your lawsuit should be filed within two years of the car accident but there are exceptions that can be discussed with your lawyer. If your claim is worth more than $25,000 it should be filed in the British Columbia Supreme Court.
3. Settlement Negotiations– ICBC settlements take place before and after lawsuits are started and are voluntary. However, once the personal injury claim is filed with the court, any party can force a settlement meeting by serving a Notice to Mediate.  If the case cannot be settled then, unless the claimant drops the case, it must go to court and be decided by a Judge or Jury.
4. Getting the settlement money- If the case settles ICBC will usually require, as a condition of the settlement, that the injury claimant sign a release. Your lawyer should explain the significance of the release before you sign it. Once the release is signed and witnessed your lawyer can release the settlement funds to you and your case comes to an end.
Not every case has the same requirements and this is why every case is decided  on its own  merits.  Talk to a lawyer before you make any big decisions in your case. Posted by personal injury lawyer Mr. Renn A. Holness B.A. LL.B.

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