Personal injury claimants without lawyers should avoid long and unclear court submissions, a lesson from the following ICBC injury claim.
This was an appeal from the dismissal of a lawsuit against ICBC for disability benefits related to a car accident which occurred in British Columbia. The Appellant went to court without a lawyer against ICBC and his claim was dismissed. The Appellants case presentation was referred to by the Court of Appeal as “prolix and unfocused”. This self-represented litigant was disorganized and he, not surprisingly, displayed a very uncertain grasp of procedural and substantive issues(Ntibarimungu v. Insurance Corporation of British Columbia 2013 BCSC 2207).
Nevertheless the Court reviewed and considered the materials provided by the Appellant, and found them to be unsatisfactory and often contradictory. Much of the cross-examination was plainly made to highlight the contradictions to be found in his medical history. The trial judge was unable to find any convincing medical evidence of other injuries being sustained in the motor vehicle accident, for it is not until a year later that there were complaints of a problem with his left wrist.
The trial judge found the relevant facts and undertook the correct analysis so the Court of Appeal dismissed the Appeal.
ISSUE: Would this injury claimant have been successful if he had hired a lawyer for his trial?
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Posted by Vancouver Personal Injury Lawyer Mr. Renn A. Holness, B.A., LL.B.