Amos v. Insurance Corp. of British Columbia, (1995) 186 N.R. 150 (SCC)

JudgeGonthier, Cory, Iacobucci and Major, JJ.
CourtSupreme Court (Canada)
Case DateSeptember 21, 1995
JurisdictionCanada (Federal)
Citations(1995), 186 N.R. 150 (SCC);10 BCLR (3d) 1;186 NR 150;56 ACWS (3d) 169;[1995] 9 WWR 305;396 APR 329;[1995] CarswellBC 424;127 DLR (4th) 618;[1995] ILR 1;31 CCLI (2d) 1;[1995] 3 SCR 405;JE 95-1089;1995 CanLII 66 (SCC);63 BCAC 1;[1995] SCJ No 74 (QL);[1995] ACS no 74;[1995] OJ No 1894 (QL)

Amos v. ICBC (1995), 186 N.R. 150 (SCC)

MLB headnote and full text

[French language version follows English language version]

[La version française vient à la suite de la version anglaise]

....................

Briton Amos (appellant) v. Insurance Corporation of British Columbia (respondent)

(24164)

Indexed As: Amos v. Insurance Corp. of British Columbia

Supreme Court of Canada

La Forest, L'Heureux-Dubé, Sopinka,

Gonthier, Cory, Iacobucci and

Major, JJ.

September 21, 1995.

Summary:

The insured sued his insurer for a decla­ration that he was entitled to Part VII bene­fits under the Insurance (Motor Vehicle) Act Regulations. The trial judge dismissed the insured's action, because the "accident" did not arise out of the insured's "ownership, use or operation" of his motor vehicle. The insured appealed.

The British Columbia Court of Appeal, in a judgment reported 42 B.C.A.C. 305; 67 W.A.C. 305, dismissed the appeal. The insured appealed.

The Supreme Court of Canada allowed the appeal and held that the insured was entitled to the claimed benefits.

Insurance - Topic 5064

Automobile insurance - Compulsory gov­ernment schemes - Bodily injury and death benefits - "Ownership, use or oper­ation" of a vehicle - While driving, the insured driver was attacked by assailants and shot - The British Columbia Court of Appeal affirmed that the insured was not entitled to benefits under s. 79(1) of the Insurance (Motor Vehicle) Act Regula­tions, because the accident did not arise out of the "ownership, use or operation" of his vehicle - Mere presence in the vehicle when injured was not a sufficient causal connection between the accident and "ownership, use or operation" - The Supreme Court of Canada held that the insured was entitled to the benefits - Driving down the street was an ordinary and well-known activity to which auto­mobiles were put - The requisite causal link existed between the shooting and the insured's ownership, use or operation - The shooting appeared to be the direct result of his assailants' attempt to enter his vehicle - This was not a "true random shooting" not related to use or operation of the vehicle.

Insurance - Topic 5064

Automobile insurance - Compulsory gov­ernment schemes - Bodily injury and death benefits - "Ownership, use or oper­ation" of a vehicle - Section 79(1) of the Insurance (Motor Vehicle) Act Regulations entitled an insured to benefits for injuries caused by an accident arising out of the "ownership, use or operation" of a motor vehicle - The Supreme Court of Canada set out the two part test mandated by s. 79(1): "(1) Did the accident result from the ordinary and well-known activities to which automobiles are put? (2) Is there some nexus or causal relationship (not necessarily a direct or proximate causal relationship) between the [insured's] injuries and the ownership, use or oper­ation of his vehicle, or is the connection between the injuries and the ownership, use or operation of the vehicle merely incidental or fortuitous?" - See paragraph 17.

Words and Phrases

Ownership, use or operation - The Supreme Court of Canada set out the two part test for determining whether an acci­dent arose out of the "ownership, use or operation" of a motor vehicle, for the purpose of statutory benefits under s. 79(1) of Regulation 447/83 of the Insur­ance (Motor Vehicle) Act Regulations (B.C.) - See paragraph 17.

Cases Noticed:

Stevenson v. Reliance Petroleum, [1956] S.C.R. 936, refd to. [para. 10].

Law, Union and Rock Insurance Co. v. Moore's Taxi Ltd., [1960] S.C.R. 80, refd to. [para. 10].

Gravel v. St-Léonard (City), [1978] 1 S.C.R. 660; 17 N.R. 486, refd to. [para. 13].

R. v. Holmes, [1988] 1 S.C.R. 914; 85 N.R. 21; 27 O.A.C. 321; 41 C.C.C.(3d) 497; 50 D.L.R.(4th) 680; 65 O.R.(2d) 639, refd to. [para. 15].

Woelk v. Halvorson, [1980] 2 S.C.R. 430; 33 N.R. 232; 24 A.R. 620; [1981] 1 W.W.R. 289; 14 C.C.L.T. 181; 114 D.L.R.(3d) 385, refd to. [para. 15].

Indemnity Insurance Co. of North America v. Excel Cleaning Service, [1954] S.C.R. 169, refd to. [para. 16].

Johnstone v. Lee (1979), 17 B.C.L.R. 324 (S.C.), refd to. [para. 20].

Yurkowski v. Federated Mutual Implement and Hardware Insurance Co. [1975] 4 W.W.R. 689 (B.C.S.C.), refd to. [para. 20].

Fraser Valley Taxi Cabs Ltd. et al. v. Insurance Corp. of British Columbia et al. (1993), 22 B.C.A.C. 42; 38 W.A.C. 42; 75 B.C.L.R.(2d) 94 (C.A.), refd to. [para. 20].

Kangas v. Aetna Casualty & Surety Co. (1975), 235 N.W.2d 42 (Mich. C.A.), refd to. [para. 21].

Thornton v. Allstate Insurance Co. (1986), 391 N.W.2d 320 (Mich.), refd to. [para. 21].

Fortune Insurance Co. v. Exilus (1992), 608 So.2d 139 (Fla.), affd. 613 So.2d 3 (Fla. App.), refd to. [para. 21].

Novak v. Government Employees Insur­ance Co. (1983), 424 So.2d 178 (Fla.), affd. 453 So.2d 1116 (Fla.), refd to. [para. 21].

Dickinson v. Motor Vehicle Insurance Trust (1987), 61 A.L.J.R. 553 (Aust. H.C.), refd to. [para. 23].

McIndoe v. Insurance Corp. of British Columbia (1990), 45 C.C.L.I. 68 (B.C.S.C.), refd to. [para. 25].

Statutes Noticed:

Automobile Insurance Act Regulations (B.C.), Reg. 428/73, sect. 7.01 [para. 14].

Insurance (Motor Vehicle) Act Regulations (B.C.), Reg. 447/83, sect. 79(1) [para. 9].

Authors and Works Noticed:

Brown, Craig, and Menezes, Julio, Insur­ance Law in Canada (2nd Ed. 1991), p. 158 [para. 15].

Driedger, Elmer A., Construction of Stat­utes (3rd Ed. 1994), p. 301 [para. 15].

Counsel:

Thomas R. Berger, Q.C., for the appellant;

Avon M. Mersey and Richard J. Berrow, for the respondent.

Solicitors of Record:

Robert A. Doran, Vancouver, British Columbia, for the appellant;

Russell & DuMoulin, Vancouver, British Columbia, for the respondent.

This appeal was heard on May 25, 1995, before La Forest, L'Heureux-Dubé, Sopinka, Gonthier, Cory, Iacobucci and Major, JJ., of the Supreme Court of Canada.

The judgment of the Supreme Court of Canada was delivered in both official lan­guages by Major, J., on September 21, 1995.

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