Vancouver lawyers at Simpson Thomas & Associates have been representing car accident victims for 50 years. We know that the vast majority of ICBC claims are resolved by negotiated settlement rather than trial. We also know that the settlement process takes time. Car accident victims are often anxious to resolve their claim and want to know how long it will take. Here are some of the factors that will influence how long it takes to settle your ICBC claim:
- Severity of your injuries. If you sustained more minor injuries and heal quickly, expedited settlement of your ICBC claim may be possible. If you have been seriously injured in a car accident, it will take more time to understand the full extent of your losses and how the injuries will impact your life. It is not possible to properly assess the full value of your ICBC claim until you have the whole picture on how much time you’ll miss from work, whether you will suffer future wage loss, your out-of-pocket expenses, your future care needs, and what your life will look like going forward.
- Maximizing the recovery process. It takes time to heal and explore all treatment options. Some car accident victims will fully recover from their injuries. Others will never get back to their pre-accident condition, instead reaching what is known as “maximum medical recovery.” For those, it will take time to adjust to post-accident life and cope with physical restrictions, pain, or permanent disability. Change of career may be necessary. You risk short-changing yourself if you rush to settle before knowing the long-term consequences. For example, if you prematurely settle your ICBC claim and then your injuries do not fully heal as expected, your condition worsens, or you develop additional issues (such as major depression arising from your physical injuries which then causes you to miss work), you will not be entitled to further compensation from ICBC.
- ICBC’s position. ICBC claims can be extremely complex, and the position ICBC takes on the many issues involved in your claim can delay settlement. ICBC may dispute liability for the accident, point to pre-existing issues as the cause of your current difficulties, or challenge the severity of your car accident injuries. Early low-ball offers and unreasonable settlement positions are unfortunately common. ICBC will refuse to pay compensation unless liability, injuries, and damages are proven. It takes time to gather evidence to refute ICBC’s position on fault and to thoroughly investigate the nature and extent of your injuries and losses. If ICBC is taking an unreasonable position on fault, injuries, or the value of your claim, our Vancouver ICBC claims lawyers can help. We have the experience to push back against unfair liability determinations and we work with necessary experts to ensure all aspects of your claim are substantiated including medical specialists, economists, and accident re constructionist engineers.
Questions About Your ICBC Claim? Vancouver Lawyers at Our Firm Can Help
If you have been injured in a car accident, you must meet certain filing deadlines or you lose the right to claim for compensation. Beyond the set limitation periods that apply to all ICBC claims, the timeline for each claim is unique. The length of time it will take to settle your ICBC claim depends on a number of factors, some of which are discussed above. Don’t rush to settle your claim, but don’t delay getting sound legal advice. If you need more information or help navigating the process, contact one of our ICBC claim lawyers in Vancouver for a free legal consultation.