Future Care Awards

To receive an award, you require a written opinion from a doctor discussing the level of future care needed

In more serious ICBC injury claims, where there is permanence to the injuries, you may have an entitlement to an award for future care. To receive an award, you require a medical opinion that concludes that the expenses in the future are reasonable and medically necessary.

Therefore, you require a written opinion from a doctor discussing the level of future care needed.  You also need an occupational therapist, who is an expert in assessing future care, to provide an analysis of the cost of the future care recommendations.

The type of items that can be awarded under future care is virtually unlimited.  The list includes such things as gardeners, homemakers, care aids, counselors, babysitters, therapists, etc.  So long as the expense is reasonable and medically necessary, you can claim it.

The award that ICBC is required to pay for future care is the net present value of the stream of future expenses. Usually, an economist must be retained to figure out what the value of the future stream of expenses will be if you get a lump-sum payment at the time of the settlement or trial.

ICBC will sometimes argue that the amount of future care should be reduced by what is available under Part VII of the Regulations. The reason being, the Insurance (Vehicle) Act allows ICBC to deduct past and future Part VII benefits from the tort claim award. With the introduction of the no-fault scheme starting for accidents after April 1, 2019, ICBC may well force more claimants to stay in the Part VII program as opposed to settling out the entire claim and closing the file.

Voluntarily allowing ICBC to deduct Part VII benefits from the future care award in exchange for leaving Part VII open should be avoided because you don’t want to be thrown into the situation of having to deal with ICBC for care needs indefinitely.  There is a real advantage to both ICBC and yourself in terminating the entire relationship when the case is settled, or judgment is rendered.