B.C. senior injured in stolen-car crash feels left behind by ICBC’s no-fault insurance

Click to play video: 'Senior injured in car crash worried about compensation from ICBC'
Senior injured in car crash worried about compensation from ICBC
Legislative bureau chief Keith Baldrey on concerns that B.C.'s hospital beds are filling up with patients suffering from respiratory illnesses. – Nov 16, 2022

A Surrey, B.C., senior who was seriously injured when he was hit by a stolen car is now worried that he won’t get the help he needs from ICBC.

Kieth Colpitts, 73, suffered six broken ribs, multiple contusions and other injuries when his car was hit by a stolen Mercedes last month.

He also has severe swelling of his ankles and feet. He cannot sleep in his bed and has to sleep in a recliner due to his injuries. He has also been waking up and shaking and experiencing tremors and he thinks it could be panic attacks.

Colpitts told Global News he was forced to postpone some of his cancer treatments because he was in the hospital.

He said because of ICBC’s no-fault system, he is being told he will get coverage for medical expenses but no other compensation, including trying to replace his car.

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“Well I kind of brought up the point, I said, ‘What am I gonna get for all this?'” Colpitts said.

“‘Well it’s no-fault insurance, you’re familiar with that I’m sure’, and she said we don’t allow anything for pain and suffering. I said well it’s hardly a normal thing where I’m hit by a driver in a stolen car. ‘Well yeah, that’s true’, and that’s the last I’ve heard.”

A GoFundMe has now been set up for Colpitts. 

Click to play video: 'Grieving relatives shocked by ICBC’s handling of claim'
Grieving relatives shocked by ICBC’s handling of claim

In a statement to Global News, ICBC said the organization is doing everything it can to support Colpitts and make sure he is able to access the care and recovery benefits available to him.

“Since Mr. Colpitts reported his claim to us last month, we have been in regular contact with him – our recovery team has spoken with him on five occasions over the past few weeks to explain the Enhanced Accident Benefits he may be entitled to, which includes immediate access to a range of treatments including physiotherapy, chiropractic care, massage therapy, counselling and more,” they said in the statement.

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ICBC also said an occupational therapist is going to Colpitts’ home in a few days to assess what assistance he might need there.

“For anyone injured in a crash, we pay for medical treatments and other expenses (e.g., travel to treatments if needed) which contribute to their recovery and rehabilitation. Mr. Colpitts has been reimbursed for transportation costs for visits to his doctor and we will continue to cover his transportation costs to medical appointments if they are related to injuries he sustained in the crash,” the statement continued.

ICBC said under the Enhanced Care model, anyone involved in a crash caused by a driver who is convicted of certain Criminal Code offences still has the right to sue the driver in a civil claim for certain compensation.

Surrey RCMP confirmed to Global News that 11 charges have been laid against the driver of the stolen car and he remains in custody awaiting his next court appearance.

Some of the charges include theft of motor vehicle,  possession of stolen property, operating a motor vehicle while prohibited, dangerous operation of a motor vehicle causing bodily harm, possession of a weapon for a dangerous purpose and multiple counts of failing to comply with a probation order.

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ICBC also said if coverage has been approved for repairs or a lump sum payment for Colpitts’ car.

“As Mr. Colpitts did not have optional collision coverage with ICBC, we had to order a police report to confirm the identity of the other driver involved in the crash and that they were responsible for causing it so we could begin the process of estimating the damage to the vehicle under Mr. Colbitts’s Basic Vehicle Damage Coverage,” the organization said.

“Now that we have obtained the police report and confirmed the circumstances around the crash, coverage has been approved and we will expediting this aspect of Mr. Colpitts’s claim.

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