ICBC harassment must stop
By: Victoria Times-Colonist (Victoria Times-Colonist)
ICBC must stop harassing a Victoria man awarded $250,000 in a lawsuit against the insurance company, a judge ordered Monday.
But a representative of the Insurance Corporation of B.C. denies the company is harassing anyone.
Spokesman Ken Hardie said ICBC has been investigating tips received since the trial that the man was not disabled.
D.F.'s lawyer asked the court during motions by both sides on Monday for an order preventing ICBC from harassing him.
The judge heard that since the trial in February, customers of D.F. have been telephoned at all hours by private investigators.
"ICBC has been harassing this man through his respective customers for several years and apparently is continuing," said BC Court of Appeal Justice Ernest Hinkson.
He ordered that to stop.
D.F., a commercial painter, testified at trial he was partially disabled because of injuries suffered in November 1991. Though still able to do some work, it's not near what he could do before, he said.
Although the 1991 collision was almost head-on at the intersection of Craigflower and Tillicum roads, D.F.'s pickup was barely scratched, thanks to a large steel bumper he had installed because of two previous accidents. These accidents became the focus at the trial.
D.F. suffered injuries to his shoulder and neck in those accidents, but said they were well on the mend when the 1991 accident occurred.
ICBC said the problems D.F. claimed were the result of the 1991 accident were actually caused by the previous accidents, which D.F. had settled out of court.
A jury awarded D.F., a father of three, a total of $250,000. All but $7,000 was for the 1991 accident. The $7,000 was for a fourth accident in 1994.
ICBC is appealing the award, calling it 'perverse'. The corporation is also applying to reopen the case to call new evidence, which it says came to light since publicity about the award.
Hardie said any calls to customers have been to investigate tips about D.F. "We have a duty to follow up on tips."
The judge also ordered ICBC to pay $85,000 toward the award. No date has yet been set for the application to reopen the case.