Charles (Wayne) Malmsten wants to know what is taking ICBC so long to compensate him for his stolen car.
Malmsten was awoken in his apartment on Lewis Street in North Cowichan during the evening of March 26 by a phone call from the RCMP to inform him that his car, which he had left in a parking lot in front of his home a few hours earlier, had been found on fire on Maple Mountain.
He said the car, a 2002 Mazda Tribute, was covered for theft and he called ICBC the day after his car was found to file a claim.
“The insurance adjuster said it should take about four weeks to process the claim, but I’m still waiting,” Malmsten said.
“I must have talked to ICBC about 100 times since then and they keep telling me that I need to provide more paperwork, with some of it notarized, and then I was told I would have to wait until their guy who checks out claims to file his report.”
Malmsten said his last contact with ICBC was last week when he was informed that the insurance agency didn’t receive his paperwork, so he would have to resend it all again.
“I had mailed it to them, and I realize that I should have sent it by registered mail, but my finances are not great right now and I have to rely on the mercy of others,” he said.
“ICBC has told me that I should rent a car and they would reimburse my expenses when the claim is finalized, but I don’t have the money to do that. I’m on a pension and don’t have much money left after I pay my bills.”
Malmsten said his life has become very difficult since he lost his car as he has health conditions and can’t walk to the bus stop to get to his doctor and his other appointments, as well as to get groceries and other living supplies, so he has to rely on people’s generosity to help him out.
He said he feels ICBC is treating him as a second-class citizen, and that he is being taken advantage of because he is a senior.
“I have congestive heart failure and having to rely on other people for everything is doing me in because the stress is killing me,” he said.
“I’m tired of being jerked around.”
A statement from ICBC said that the insurance agency works to resolve theft claims as quickly as possible but with some claims, such as this, there are delays beyond ICBC’s control that lengthen the claims process.
“This customer’s claim has been delayed as we were unable to reach individuals related to this claim that we needed information from for several weeks,” the statement said.
“We are now waiting to receive documentation from the customer that is needed to continue with the claims process. On behalf of all policyholders, ICBC’s obligated to do its due diligence by reviewing and investigating claims to ensure that they’re legitimate and any settlement is fair. We appreciate the customer’s patience as we work to resolve this claim.”