Automotive

ICBC announces plans for a new sort-of-no-fault model

  • Last Updated:
  • Feb 12th, 2020 9:32 am
[OP]
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Jan 21, 2018
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Vancouver

ICBC announces plans for a new sort-of-no-fault model

https://www.citynews1130.com/2020/02/06/icbc-no-fault/

As residents of BC know, ICBC's is the monopoly government auto insurer in BC. Their rates are the highest in the country, and their disastrous finances have been widely described as a "dumpster fire". This is due to a combination of factors including decades of an uncompetitive government bureaucracy, excessive management bonuses paid every year without justification, the provincial government robbing ICBC's coffers to pretend the budget is balanced in election years, and runaway litigation costs due to their adversarial policies. An obvious solution would be to get rid of them, but the NDP government could never bring themselves to privatize something run by the provincial government, no matter how broken it may appear.

Under tremendous pressure to get the financial house in order, ICBC has decided to focus on the last problem listed: runaway litigation costs. There are few details yet, but apparently they plan to bring in a model something like Ontario's Insurance Act that sets forth firm liability rules, no appeal possible, and firm guidelines as to how much compensation can be received. Drivers will not be allowed to sue for damages or to challenge liability rulings, unless there is a criminal charge involved. "Fair" decisions will be made by a new arm of ICBC.

In my opinion this is terrible. The are re-affirming ICBC's government monopoly, and preventing challenges to their decisions by allowing them to rule on liability and set damages unilaterally. They say this will reduce their costs - but I'll bet you that they won't reduce the costs to BC drivers!

We already have a problem with the multiple conflicting roles of ICBC in BC. They are the provincial regulator, the monopoly auto insurer, and the designated judge of accident liability and compensation awards. Now they want to replace the court judge and jury as well.

Personally I have had 3 disputed accident settlements with ICBC in my decades here. In each case I was eventually successful in getting full satisfaction from ICBC, but it was excessively difficult and wasted a lot of time and money - in one case I had to take them all the way to small claims court. It was clear to me that ICBC is costing themselves money by failing to train their adjusters adequately, being belligerently insistent on sticking to their initial slapdash ruling in the face of overwhelming evidence to the contrary, and preferring to spend money on litigation when any rational organization would have reconsidered and settled. They made their own mess. Now they want to patch over the symptom in a way that's unfair to their unwilling customers instead of fixing the problem.
Last edited by Scote64 on Feb 7th, 2020 1:45 am, edited 2 times in total.
23 replies
Deal Addict
May 30, 2012
3641 posts
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Montreal
400$ decrease is not enough....

Qc has no fault insurance, they pay 400$ a year....
Deal Addict
Apr 5, 2016
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Calgary/Vancouver
They still need to cover previous losses hence they can't drop the rates that much.
Current Fido customer.
Ex Koodo customer.
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Sep 1, 2004
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iownyou wrote: 400$ decrease is not enough....

Qc has no fault insurance, they pay 400$ a year....
Google says:
Average is $724/year and there is ~$100/year in registration that goes into the fund as well.

Still damn cheap for PLPD.


Now does criminal conviction include speeding? So stick speeding in every accident and keep suing? :D
Jr. Member
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Oct 27, 2008
144 posts
75 upvotes
Coquitlam
I am really liking all the changes to ICBC so far. All steps in the right direction after years of ignorance by the Liberals and billions of losses.
[OP]
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Jan 21, 2018
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ICBC's statements about drivers saving money on premiums with their planned changes are equivalent to retailer promotions offering "$400 off!". But $400 off what? They didn't say your premiums will go down. They are claiming that they will be $400 less on average than they would have been without the new measures - if everything goes according to their optimistic plan. ICBC still has billions of dollars in debt to pay off, and guess who is going to be paying that?

And that's assuming everyone rolls over and says ok to ICBC's plan to save money by the government mandating everyone has to accept their "take it or leave it" offers with no challenge allowed. You really think a bunch of trial lawyers are going to be fine with that?
Deal Addict
Jul 21, 2005
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iownyou wrote: 400$ decrease is not enough....

Qc has no fault insurance, they pay 400$ a year....
AB covers the rest with transfer payments :D
[OP]
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Jan 21, 2018
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Vancouver
CBC aired an interview with Finance Minister David Eby tonight answering some questions about the proposed ICBC changes.

He confirmed exactly what I feared: under this new plan ICBC adjusters will continue to unilaterally decide fault in accidents, but now there will be no appeal to the courts allowed. If you disagree, you can take it to a new ICBC "Fairness" body, which if past experience is any guide will simply rubber-stamp the initial ruling without further consideration.

I am 100% opposed to this. ICBC adjusters are careless screwups with poor training and no accident investigation skills or resources. They are woefully unqualified to be the sole decider of fault in accidents. There are intermediate dispute resolution alternatives that can assist in getting it right, but without the backup of being able to take a bad decision to court, I have no doubt that ICBC will take advantage of their mandate to be as careless and arbitrary as they want with nobody to stop them.
Deal Addict
Sep 1, 2004
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Scote64 wrote: CBC aired an interview with Finance Minister David Eby tonight answering some questions about the proposed ICBC changes.

He confirmed exactly what I feared: under this new plan ICBC adjusters will continue to unilaterally decide fault in accidents, but now there will be no appeal to the courts allowed. If you disagree, you can take it to a new ICBC "Fairness" body, which if past experience is any guide will simply rubber-stamp the initial ruling without further consideration.

I am 100% opposed to this. ICBC adjusters are careless screwups with poor training and no accident investigation skills or resources. They are woefully unqualified to be the sole decider of fault in accidents. There are intermediate dispute resolution alternatives that can assist in getting it right, but without the backup of being able to take a bad decision to court, I have no doubt that ICBC will take advantage of their mandate to be as careless and arbitrary as they want with nobody to stop them.
But cheaper insurance tho. lol

Ontarians are bitching right now, may be BC can show them how this is done.
[OP]
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Jan 21, 2018
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Vancouver
Xtrema wrote: But cheaper insurance tho. lol
I don't think so, and that's not exactly what they said if you understand politics-speak. ICBC hopes this will save them money. But that doesn't mean it will make your insurance cheaper. As I pointed out, ICBC has run up a huge debt to pay off using your money. Maybe they will stop going deeper into debt, and maybe even start to pay off the existing debt. But they aren't going to do that by reducing what you pay. So when they say "average $400 cheaper" they don't mean cheaper than you pay now. They mean cheaper than it would have been without these measures - but still more expensive than now.
Deal Addict
May 30, 2012
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Montreal
Scote64 wrote: I don't think so, and that's not exactly what they said if you understand politics-speak. ICBC hopes this will save them money. But that doesn't mean it will make your insurance cheaper. As I pointed out, ICBC has run up a huge debt to pay off using your money. Maybe they will stop going deeper into debt, and maybe even start to pay off the existing debt. But they aren't going to do that by reducing what you pay. So when they say "average $400 cheaper" they don't mean cheaper than you pay now. They mean cheaper than it would have been without these measures - but still more expensive than now.
You are speculating...
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Oct 26, 2003
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Winnipeg
Is the premium in BC and Ontario really make it that much better than Quebec's no frill prices? Are you getting your money's worth having BC or Ontario's expensive premium?
Deal Addict
Jun 14, 2008
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Montreal
eblend wrote: AB covers the rest with transfer payments :D
Before the circle jerk starts again, no we don't pay that little unless it's a 10 year old car. And it only covers property damage, personal part is paid for by high driver's license fees.
Newbie
Dec 29, 2017
51 posts
29 upvotes
Watching the local news here in GVRD, I'm seeing a lot more law firms ads offering free consults and no your rights about brain injuries. If the air bag deploys and you blank out for a fraction of a second, you likely have a brain injury. There are no minor brain injuries and people will require life-time medical care. I believe Ebby comment's are ICBC will do something like WCB to provide long term treatment for these peoples. You have to wonder if there are a number of fake claims that are driving up insurance cost as it pretty much every accident with a good lawyer would qualify as brain injury claim.

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