Proposed ICBC Change Could Void Insurance for Distracted Drivers


As part of both a crackdown on distracted driving and a financial restructuring of the Insurance Corporation of B.C. (ICBC), B.C. Attorney General David Eby has directed ICBC to make distracted drivers responsible for causing a crash pay for several significant costs, including own auto repairs, medical expenses, as well as any lawsuit settlements, CBC News is reporting.

Distracted driving

The proposed ICBC change would essentially void parts of distracted drivers’ insurance coverage in a collision, which the auto insurer currently pays for. 

Rich McCandless, a former B.C. public servant who has written several papers on ICBC’s finances, agrees with clamping down on distracted driving. However, he believes the potential change would raise a lot of questions around enforcement. He also sees a problem in the legal expenses the province could take on.

“There’s a lot of subjectivity that comes into [determining whether someone is driving distracted]. With impaired driving you blow [into a breathalyzer] and you get the reading — it’s much more cut and dry.”

There’s going to be a major incentive [for at-fault distracted drivers] to seek legal opinion and dispute [their loss of coverage] in the courts, which is contrary to what the government is trying to do with reducing the current dependence on lawyers in the system.”

If ICBC’s research into the change determines it is a desirable option, the Attorney General believes it could be implemented within a year.


  • ICBCSucks

    Then what good is insurance! What if I am falsely accused of distracted driving and so now I have to pay lawyers out of pocket to prove innocence. Insurance needs to be set based on the value of your vehicle + your driving history. By value I mean, if you’re driving a 100k car, it needs to be significantly higher and not a measly $300/mo. People with good records driving a Civic pay upwards of $280 a month.

  • fatiredflyer

    About time.

  • aRhyno

    280$ a month? Ouch. Full coverage in NS is about 50-80$ a month for a good driver. My wife had 2 small accidents and she was only paying 220$ a month for a few years. Now back down to 90$ a month 4 years later.

  • cayaguy

    New Immigrants to Canada (then into BC) shouldn’t be allowed the same discount level as someone who’s been accent free for 20 years. Period. If you’re new to BC with no Canadian driving history you should be starting at that highest rate and PROVE yourself just like the rest of British Columbians for a Lower rate. Fair is fair

  • Anaron

    Let the insurance provider decide the rates. If you don’t like it, then go find a different provider. Quit being salty.

  • raslucas

    Accent free? What if they’re an immigrant from Washington, USA? They probably wouldn’t have much of an accent at all…

    What does that actually have to do with insurance anyways?

  • Ben

    Don’t be stupid. There is no other provider