ICBC medical exams
The Insurance Corporation of British Columbia, ICBC, is a government created auto insurance monopoly entrusted with providing universal public auto insurance in British Columbia. However, ICBC has been using biased medical experts to deny legitimate personal injury claims, the following case is a recent example (Litt v. Hassan, 2015 BCSC 1920).  This twisted and tainted approach to providing universal car insurance has made some doctors very rich and has cost ICBC millions of wasted dollars. As a result ICBC now wants more money by way of higher insurance rates, blaming innocent victims of personal injury.
Dr. Grypma was an orthopaedic surgeon hired by ICBC to give a medical opinion in this car accident personal injury case. Dr. Grypma does not have his own patients, he has not practiced clinically since 2010. Since stopping  clinical practice Dr. Grypma has worked on behalf of the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia (“ICBC”).  He was qualified without debate in this case to give opinion evidence on musculoskeletal injuries and soft-tissue injuries, but was found to be biased.
On cross-examination, Dr. Grypma accepted that, since 2010, his professional corporation has billed ICBC approximately $300,000 per year for medical/legal opinions. Dr. Gryma claimed that the complaints were somehow not connected to the accident and blamed the claimant for inactivity, functional overlay, being overweight, and poor posture. In rejecting his opinion the judge rejected Dr. Grypma’s view as they were based on:

  •  His unyielding and previously judicially rejected view that a muscle is not injured if pain is not immediate;
  • A lack of objectivity during his examination of the plaintiff over 3 ½ years after the First Accident; and
  • An argumentative analysis of the claimant’s previous medical history and clinical records.

Further, Dr. Grypma’s report includes a section headed “Consistency of Findings” in which he provides his opinion on the forces imparted on the human body during a rear-end collision.  As the judge made clear:

[88] These comments are either outside the scope of Dr. Grypma’s expertise, are an attempt to attack the plaintiff’s credibility or are in the nature of argument.  They are not helpful and have no place in the report of a medical expert who has certified that he is aware that his duty is to assist the court and not be an advocate for any party.

[89]   I found Dr. Grypma to be an advocate rather than an impartial, objective expert.

[90]   In assessing the evidence regarding whether and to what extent the plaintiff was injured by the First Accident and the Second Accident, I accept the opinion evidence of Drs. Hershler and Sahjpaul and reject that of Dr. Grypma.

It is my view that the reports of Dr. Grypma should not have been admitted at all: see: New Expert Evidence Test Impacts Personal Injury Cases
Despite the opinions of Dr. Grypma the claimant was awarded $277,000 plus expenses and contribution to legal fees. The Award was broken down as followings:

a) Pain and Suffering: $60,000
b) Past Wage Loss/Loss of Earning Capacity: $130,000
c) Future Loss of Income and Earning Capacity: $75,000
d) Past and Future Loss of Housekeeping Capacity: $0
e) Cost of Future Care: $3,500
f) Out of Pocket Expenses: $8,673.71
TOTAL: $277,173.71

ISSUE: Should ICBC be allowed to continue hiring medical experts like Dr. Grypma?

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