Most injuries in BC result when two cars collide. Usually both drivers are insured by ICBC. This creates a conflict because ICBC has to take the side of the innocent driver and the at-fault driver. The people who do this for ICBC are ICBC adjusters. The conflict means that two adjusters, both working for ICBC, decide between themselves who is to blame for the accident.
If you give a statement to an adjuster for ICBC (or any other insurance company), you should know that the person you talk to is working for the insurance company. The insurance company wants the adjuster to look for defences to your claim so they can reduce or eliminate what you are entitled to. One way adjusters do this is by asking you to provide written statements. The adjuster may then use your statement to try to show things like:
- you are wholly or partly to blame for the accident
- you were not properly insured at the time of the accident
- you had problems before you were injured
- other facts that may serve to reduce the amount of money the insurance company must pay you on a claim
Statements you give to insurance adjusters can also be used against you later in settlement negotiations or court. Also, adjusters may ask you to sign Authorizations allowing them to get information they are not always entitled to, such as a full medical history. If you hire a lawyer, you don’t need to meet with an adjuster or provide all the documents they request. If you have already met, the Authorizations you signed can be revoked.