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Information for lawyers looking for legal expertise in BC and Canada
Download A Layman's Guide to ICBC Part 7 Benefits

Law Talk

Disability Insurance Basics with Paul Bosco


In this seminar, Paul Bosco reviews the basics of disability insurance and making sure you are protected. Disability insurance includes coverage of medical expenses, partial coverage of payment while you are unable to work, and can sometimes include a one-time lump-sum payment.

Choosing the right insurance for you.

It’s important to take the time to consider the level that you and your family want to be protected before an incident occurs. If you are self-employed, this may mean shopping around to see what kind of coverage is available to you. Even if you have coverage through work, you are going to want to review your policy to ensure that it includes everything you may need.

Review and understand forms, and be truthful. 

Most people think they have more coverage than they actually do. They think they have blanket coverage that protects them if something bad happens no matter what. Unfortunately, insurance contracts are riddled with exclusions that dictate what they will and will not pay. Make sure you are forthcoming when you apply for insurance, particularly in regards to any pre-existing medical issues and take the time to confirm that the insurer is still willing to cover you. If you aren’t sure what information the insurer is asking for in any part of the application, make the effort to get clarification and be sure you fully understand what information you must provide. If you are not forthcoming about your medical history, the insurer may not cover you in the event something happens.

If you are unsure about your policy coverage, make sure you contact a lawyer who has experience in this area.

Making the claim. 

In most cases, you have to report your claim in a short period of time either on the phone or online. Once this is done, an adjuster will be assigned to your case. It’s also important to follow up and make sure the claim is being processed without any problems.

Disputing a Denial.

Just because your claim is denied does not mean that you are at the end of the road. Review your policy to see if there are appeal provisions and any time limits on appeals. In some cases, you need to exhaust internal appeal procedures before you can exercise other options. Get some help from a lawyer who practices insurance law so you can explore your options without worrying about missing a limitation period. In BC you have two years to dispute a claim. If you miss that time limit, you may be barred from an appeal. Make sure this doesn’t happen to you by consulting an insurance lawyer as soon as possible, after your claim has been denied.

Need help understanding your insurance policy? You are welcome to contact anyone of our lawyers.


Duty to Accommodate Disabilities in the Workplace with Andrew Brine

Andrew Brine of our Vancouver office provides an overview of human rights in the employment context with a focus on duty to accommodate persons with disabilities in the workplace.

Complaints against employers arise when employees with a disability experience adverse treatment or discrimination, that can include terminations, demotions or pay cuts. Most battles are fought over proving the employee’s disability was a factor in the employer’s adverse treatment.

Canadian human rights legislation imposes a positive duty on employers to accommodate persons with disabilities to the point of undue hardship. Accommodation can include modifying the physical workspace, temporary assignments, a leave of absence or a substantive change in job duties. Employees must provide sufficient medical information about their functional limitations to trigger the need for accommodation. They also must mitigate their losses.

Employers are not required to accommodate an employee if the required changes would result in an undue hardship for the employer. What circumstances will constitute “undue hardship” for an employer is determined on a case-by-case basis. Indicators that undue hardship may result include affordability of the required accommodations, operational needs, and an unreasonable change of standards. If an employer can demonstrate undue hardship, the employer is discharged from this duty.

Part 7 Accident Benefits with Raj Dewar

In this seminar Raj Dewar, of our Surrey office, provides an overview of Part 7 Accident Benefits, ICBC tort claims and WorkSafeBC claims:

ICBC Part 7 Accident Benefits include medical and rehabilitation coverage up to $150,000, with additional amounts for disability payments per claimant. The deadline to apply is two years from the date of the crash regardless of age. These benefits are secondary to other coverage and available for several categories: mandatory, discretionary, Total Temporary Disability (TTD) for up to 104 weeks with a maximum of $300 per week for income loss or $145 per week for homemaker benefits and Excess Accident Benefits Policy up to $800 per week. For more information on Part 7 Benefits download A Layman’s Guide to ICBC Part 7 Benefits.

ICBC tort claims are intended to provide compensation for injuries, past wage loss, loss of future earnings, future care, loss of homemaking capacity, and out of pocket user fees. The limitation date is two years from the crash date, except for infants (persons under age 19) who have two years from the date they turn 19 to file a claim. Click to learn more about infant claims.

ICBC or Worksafe BC? If you were working at time of the crash, but other party was not, then you can elect to proceed under ICBC instead of WorkSafeBC. This is recommended as you would receive compensation for your injuries and losses under an ICBC tort claim, as well as Part 7 Accident Benefits. Get more information about tort claims under damages here.

ICBC Part 7 – Murphy Battista LLP

This seminar gives an eye opening look at how the different facets of the ICBC No Fault claim may be related to you and those you love. It is shocking to note that everyone at some point in their lives may access this claim, and it’s important to arm yourself with the knowledge about how to utilize it to its full potential. There may be things that you can take advantage of, that you’re not aware of. Remember, ICBC doesn’t tell you everything. Let us.

Although we focus on persons with disabilities this is still highly informative for anyone, currently injured or not. For more information on Part 7 Benefits download A Layman’s Guide to ICBC Part 7 Benefits.