No, There is no such limit on the compensation available to ICBC whiplash claimants or others suffering from neck injury and soft tissue injury in British Columbia. Howver, Accidents after April 1, 2019 may be subject to the 2019 ICBC Minor Injury Cap. ICBC is now allowed to call serious injuries minor to limit compensation.

If you start your personal injury claim in Provincial Court, your claim will be limited to $25,000, despite your injury potentially being worth more. In the Supreme Court, however, there is no $6,000 monetary limit on the awards available for soft tissues injuries or whiplash. If you pick the wrong forum for your lawsuit or agree to a low settlement amount, compensation for you injury will be limited.

In British Columbia Canada personal injury victims are entitled to reasonable compensation for pain and suffering. The claimant should be placed in the same position she or he  would have been if the accident had not occurred.

 The Supreme Court has ruled that an award for pain, suffering and loss of enjoyment of life will vary to meet the specific circumstances of each case.  The Supreme Court has set out the factors to be considered in making a pain and suffering award for whiplash and soft issue injury to the neck and back:

(a)        age of the plaintiff;

(b)        nature of the injury;

(c)        severity and duration of pain;

(d)        disability;

(e)        emotional suffering; and

(f)         loss or impairment of life;

(g)        impairment of family, marital and social relationships;

(h)        impairment of physical and mental abilities;

(i)         loss of lifestyle; and

(j)         stoicism

There is much cynicism by ICBC and other insurance companies about claims that significant injury has been sustained as a result of a minor car accident. This is particularly so where there is little objective evidence of physical injury and where the complaints of pain persist far beyond what most observers might consider to be “normal”.  However the court has recognized time and time again that the effect of soft tissue injury to the neck, including whiplash and Whiplash Associated Disorder, will vary according the the facts of the case.

In Boag v. Berna, 2003 BCSC 779, Williamson J. noted somewhat sardonically:


[12]      …I am aware that it is often inappropriate to equate the damages to a motor vehicle to injuries that may be sustained by occupants of that vehicle.  That a piece of steel is not dented does not mean that the human occupant is not injured.

Posted by Vancouver Personal Injury Lawyer Mr. Renn A. Holness, B.A. LL.B.


ICBC Limits on Care Costs

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