The country you are resident in does not determine your right to make a claim for personal injuries in British Columbia (BC) or other jurisdictions in Canada. Generally, the rule is that in order to bring a claim in BC, you need only have been injured while inside BC. Most personal injury cases involving car accidents in BC will involve the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia (ICBC), as BC drivers must get at least basic liability coverage through ICBC within 30 days of residing in BC.
For people residing outside of BC bringing a lawsuit within BC can cause complications. Firstly, you will need to either file the lawsuit yourself or get a lawyer who is licensed to practice within BC to do so within your behalf. Although it’s ideal to meat your lawyer in person, it’s not necessary to do so. You can retain a lawyer to act on your behalf over the phone or email.
This issue was dealt with in a recent Supreme Court of British Columbia case:
Here, the plaintiff was now residing in Qatar and was not barred from making a claim for personal injury in BC. The plaintiff was even awarded an amount for both past and future wage losses despite difficulties in producing evidence towards that end. Obviously, it’s much easier for a person who lives locally to produce witnesses such as co-workers, mangers, and treatment providers. In these situations, the courts will take geographic location into account and weigh the credibility of the witness as a whole.
In my own practice, I have dealt with clients from all over the globe. When necessary, I have relied upon translators and modern technologies, like video conferencing, to provide effective legal representation to my clients.