Canadian Underwriter

ICBC loses appeal in hit-and-run case

January 31, 2011   by

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The Insurance Corporation of British Columbia (ICBC) has lost its bid to appeal a case in which a gas station owner was injured after a customer filled up her car with gas and attempted to drive away without paying.

Parminder Kumar Nayar commenced an action against ICBC when he was hurt trying to stop an unidentified driver from driving away without paying for gas.

The driver drove into Nayar when he stood on the road in front of the car. She accelerated to 100 km-h while he lay on the hood of the vehicle, and then turned sharply, throwing him to the pavement.

Nayar launched the action against ICBC because his injuries were caused by an unidentified driver. A lower court found ICBC was 100 per cent responsible for the plaintiff’s injuries.

ICBC argued the lower court should have found Nayar at least partly responsible for his injuries. ICBC claimed Nayar was negligent for having placed himself in front of the vehicle when the driver was in an agitated state, and remained there even though she revved the engine and inched forward before driving into him.

Nayar was injured in 2004. The trial occurred in September 2008. A notice of appeal was filed in October 2008, but counsel for ICBC fell ill, which meant ICBC’s case wasn’t prepared until the end of April 2010, three weeks after the appeal was dismissed.

ICBC applied to have its appeal reinstated, but B.C. Court of Appeal denied the attempt. The Court of Appeal agreed with the judge who dismissed the case on the basis that the appeal was “very weak” and “doomed to failure.” 

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