After a car accident a phone call to the ICBC dial a claim number at 604-520-8222 or 1-800-910-4222 will result in an internal ICBC report being created called a CL-75. As displayed in the following case, these reports to ICBC can be used to impeach claimants and witnesses about the details of the accident. Watch our video at the end of this article for more helpful tips before ICBC reporting.
The claimant in this personal injury case alleged that he was the driver of his vehicle when it was struck by the defendant’s vehicle and that he was injured as a result of the collision. The claimant called ICBC’s Dial-a-Claim service and reported that the accident had happened on 8th Avenue and 10th Street in New Westminster, B.C. – near the “Justice Institute”. At trial the claimant said that the accident had actually happened in Burnaby, at the intersection of Kingsway and Hall . The two intersections he reported are a considerable distance from each other and do not resemble each other in any way. (Brennan v. Colindres, 2016 BCSC 1026)
The other driver also contacted the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia’s (ICBC) Dial-a-Claim line and reported the accident, in case someone made a claim. A few weeks later that she received a phone call asking her to come in to ICBC to give a statement, because a claim had been reported.
At trial, the claimant gave more than one explanation for having first claimed that the accident happened at an entirely different intersection in an entirely different city. In direct examination, he testified that at the scene of the accident a witness had written down the accident location on his vehicle registration papers and he could not read her handwriting so reported to ICBC that the accident had happened in New Westminster and that he was coming from Douglas College.
In cross-examination, the claimant changed his testimony. He said that he, and not the witness, had written the address 8th Avenue and 10th Street on his registration papers, but at some earlier date. He could not recall why he had written that address on his registration papers. He said he read that address to the ICBC Dial-a-Claim receptionist when making his report about the accident.
The claimant did not prove to be a credible witness. He was a very poor historian; failed to respond honestly and truthfully to questions asked; had a tendency to shade his testimony in a way he perceived to be helpful to his case; he contradicted himself and gave different versions of the same events at different times.
The judge was only prepared to accept that for a short time after car accident, the claimant would have found his usual recreational and social activities less enjoyable than before the accident injuries exacerbated his chronic condition, but that within six months post-accident he was not prevented from participating in the activities to the same extent he had prior to the accident. The judge summarized the award as follows:
|Out of pocket expenses-||$128|
|Past loss of income –||$7,200|
|Pain and Suffering –||$20,000|
This case is an example of what can happen if a good personal injury lawyer is not consulted before making an ICBC dial-a-claim report. Watch our short videos and learn more about the ICBC dial a claim hotline: