B.C. Public Safety Minister Mike Farnworth defends government actions in the legislature, Feb. 19, 2020. (Hansard TV)

B.C. Public Safety Minister Mike Farnworth defends government actions in the legislature, Feb. 19, 2020. (Hansard TV)

ICBC applies for 15% rate decrease as lawyers pushed out

Resolution tribunal to determine most injury awards

The Insurance Corp. of B.C. is applying for a 15 per cent rate decrease for its monopoly basic vehicle insurance as the B.C. government’s changes to eliminate most of the costly lawsuits against the province’s auto insurer take effect next year.

Public Safety Minister Mike Farnworth says the rate cut, subject to approval of the B.C. Utilities Commission, will be a substantial step to delivering on a promised 20 per cent reduction in insurance costs. ICBC is also cutting its optional insurance rates starting Feb. 1, 2021, and the rate reductions should start showing up on ICBC renewals.

ICBC got approval for a 6.3 per cent rate increase in January 2019, the latest increase as the province prepared to bail out the corporation with $1 billion to cover a deficit caused by ballooning crash and injury awards and court costs.

RELATED: B.C. restricts ICBC lawsuits, promises rate cut

RELATED: Province bails out ICBC, B.C. Hydro in 2020 budget

The new injury coverage, which the government calls Enhanced Care, takes effect on May 1, 2021. When it takes effect, ICBC customers are told to expect a one-time refund.

“It will be calculated using the difference between a driver’s current Autoplan coverage and the new, lower-cost Enhanced Care coverage, for the portion of their existing policy that extends past May 1, 2021,” Farnworth and ICBC president Nicolas Jiminez said Dec. 14.

Farnworth was assigned responsibility for ICBC with the formation of the new majority NDP government, after Premier John Horgan and Attorney General David Eby pushed through the changes over the objections of the Trial Lawyers Association of B.C. Eby first moved to limit expert witnesses in injury cases, prompting a legal challenge.

Horgan and Eby have rejected the lawyers’ description of the new system as “no fault,” pointing out that people can still be sued in some circumstances.

“You can’t run into someone without consequences,” Horgan said in announcing the new system in February 2020. “Your rates will go up. If you are found criminally responsible or criminally negligent, you can be sued.”


@tomfletcherbc
tfletcher@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

BC politicsICBC

Just Posted

Taylor Bachrach, NDP MP for Skeena-Bulkley Valley addresses Parliament on June 7, in call for the federal government to stop fighting Indigenous children in court and to implement the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Call to Action. (Image: supplied from Facebook)
NDP motion calling for immediate reconciliation action passes

Skeena-Bulkley MP Taylor Bachrach addresses federal Parliament

Coho is one of many fish species that will benefit from a project to assess fish passage in the Falls River Watershed and offer options for improved connectivity and habitat restoration. The project will be delivered with funding from the Fish and Wildlife Compensation Program announced on June 8. (Photo: supplied by FWCP, istock, M.Haring)
More than $2.1 million for Northcoast fish and wildlife projects

Falls River Watershed SE of Prince Rupert to have fish passage and habitat study

UFAWU-Unifor stated on June 8 that there is no evidence of commercial fishing fleet overfishing for salmon. A salmon being weighed in Prince Rupert during the correct season in 2020. (Photo: K-J Millar/The Northern View)
UFAWU-Unifor responds to DFO’s Pacific Salmon Strategy Initiative

Union states there is no evidence of overfishing in the commercial fleet

Ocean Wise’s cetacean photogrammetry research program uses aerial images collected by boat-launched drones to measure the body condition of whales and assess their health and nutritional status. (Ocean Wise Marine Mammal License MML-18 photo)
LNG Canada commits $750K to Ocean Wise

New three-year initiative expands whale research, conservation and education programs in the north west

Loki, a young bald eagle is seen in recovery after being found hanging from power lines on just her second day of independence, last July. Equipped with a GPS, Loki has made a home in Prince Rupert with Hancock Wildlife Foundation asking for help in photographing her. (Photo: Hancock Wildlife Foundation)
Looking for Loki, the new Prince Rupert local

Hancock Wildlife Foundation is asking the public for help

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau participates in a plenary session at the G7 Summit in Carbis Bay, England on Friday June 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada donating 13M surplus COVID-19 vaccine doses to poor countries

Trudeau says the government will pay for 87 million shots to be distributed to poor countries

Premier John Horgan speaks as provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry, right, and health minister Adrian Dix look on during a press conference to update on the province’s fall pandemic preparedness plan during a press conference from the press theatre at Legislature in Victoria, Wednesday, Sept. 9, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
B.C. officials to provide details on Step 2 of COVID reopening plan Monday

Step 2 could allow for larger gatherings and a resumption of recreational travel

Indigenous Services Minister Marc Miller is seen during a news conference, Wednesday May 19, 2021 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Indigenous child-welfare battle heads to court despite calls for Ottawa to drop cases

Feds are poised to argue against two Canadian Human Rights Tribunal rulings

The Great Ogopogo Bathtub Race has been held in Summerland as a fundraising event. Do you know which Canadian city introduced this sport? (Black Press file photo)
QUIZ: A summer’s day at the water

How much do you know about boats, lakes and water?

Two-year-old Ivy McLeod laughs while playing with Lucky the puppy outside their Chilliwack home on Thursday, June 10, 2021. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
VIDEO: B.C. family finds ‘perfect’ puppy with limb difference for 2-year-old Ivy

Ivy has special bond with Lucky the puppy who was also born with limb difference

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good
Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

A million-dollar ticket was sold to an individual in Vernon from the Lotto Max draw Friday, June 11, 2021. (Photo courtesy of BCLC)
Lottery ticket worth $1 million sold in Vernon

One lucky individual holds one of 20 tickets worth $1 million from Friday’s Lotto Max draw

“65 years, I’ve carried the stories in my mind and live it every day,” says Jack Kruger. (Athena Bonneau)
‘Maybe this time they will listen’: Survivor shares stories from B.C. residential school

Jack Kruger, living in Syilx territory, wasn’t surprised by news of 215 children’s remains found on the grounds of the former Kamloops Indian Residential School

Most Read