BCCA approves claim settlement of less than 10% of full value.

On November 29 2018, BC Court of Appeal approved the settlement of a claim, potentially worth more than $400,000.00, for the all inclusive sum of 35,000.00. In Deo v. Vancouver, 2018 BCCA 464, a child suffered serious injuries at school, leaving him partially blind. He sued for damages and was largely unsuccessful on proving liability at trial. The child’s lawyer valued the claim at over $400,000, but before the liability appeals could be heard a settlement of $35,000 was reached. The child, being a minor, could not legally agree to any settlement and judicial approval was required....

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Replacement policy void, but $600,000 death benefit upheld.

On November 22, 2018, the Alberta Court of Queen’s Bench awarded a $600,000 death benefit to the 2 surviving children and adult partner of a deceased man, Jeffery Moss. In Moss v. Sun Life Assurance Co. of Canada, [2018] A.J. No. 1383, 2018 ABQB 953, the deceased’s daughter, Daniella Moss, brought a summary trial application seeking a declaration as to the validity of two insurance policies. She was one of the beneficiaries of the two life insurance policies on her father’s life. The deceased purchased a $600,000 life insurance policy in 1994. In April 2009, the deceased...

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Insurance company to stand trial for bad faith negotiations.

On May 17, 2018, the Manitoba Court of Appeal dismissed an appeal from an insurance company’s unsuccessful application for summary judgment to dismiss a claim brought by its insured. In 3746292 Manitoba Ltd. v. Intact Insurance Co., 2018 MBCA 59, the insured was the owner of a mixed-use property in downtown Winnipeg consisting of residential apartments and commercial space. In 2010, an accidental fire caused significant damage. A dispute arose over the cost of repairs and the amount of a co-insurance penalty. The parties negotiated a settlement, and the insured property owner signed a...

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Car garage does not owe duty to drunk teenager injured in stolen car.

On May 11, 2018, the Supreme Court of Canada  ruled that a commercial car garage did not owe a duty of care to a person who was injured in a car he had stolen from the garage. In Rankin (Rankin’s Garage & Sales) v. J.J., J.J., a teenager, suffered a catastrophic brain injury in a motor vehicle collision. He sued Rankin’s Garage & Sales, among other parties, for negligence because the car that he and another teenager stole from the garage had been left unlocked with the keys in the ashtray. At trial, the jury found multiple parties were found liable for J.J.’s injuries, which occurred...

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Manulife to pay benefits to brain-injured man, after a long battle.

On April 19, 2018, Ontario’s highest court ordered Manulife to pay long-term disability benefits to a man who suffered a traumatic brain injury and a severe back injury during a company-sponsored event on April 16, 2005. In  MacIvor v. Pitney Bowes Inc., [2018] O.J. No. 2105, 2018 ONCA 381, the Ontario Court of Appeal (“ONCA”), reversed a trial decision and found for Lenard MacIvor. Mr. MacIvor suffered a traumatic brain injury and a significant musculoskeletal injury during a company-sponsored event in Costa Rica. Mr. MacIvor, who worked at Pitney Bowes at the time, was...

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ICBC assessed costs for “improper act”.

On February 20, 2018, the BC Supreme Court assessed costs against ICBC in Garayt v. Deneumoustier, 2018 BCSC 295, for failing to abide by “very clear case law”. By way of background, when a lawyer in British Columbia receives trust funds a $15 “trust administration fee” must be assessed. For a description of the fee program, click  here.  This is a mandatory assessment. So, when a plaintiff retains a lawyer to resolve a dispute with ICBC this fee needs to be paid.  If the plaintiff is successful, ICBC ought to indemnify this fee as a disbursement.  They typically try...

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