09 May Is ICBC Refusing to Pay for your Massage Therapy Treatments?

On November 29, 2011, British Columbia’s Court of Appeal upheld the decision in Raguin (Litigation Guardian of ) v. Insurance Corporation of British Columbia, 2011 BCCA 482 , that ICBC must pay for necessary massage therapy treatments when recommended by a doctor.


The Court found that massage therapy met the two requirements of a mandatory benefit payable by ICBC under Part 7 of the Insurance (Motor Vehicle) Act Regulation. First, massage therapy fits within the definition of physical therapy, making it a mandatory benefit. Second, massage therapy was a necessary treatment because it had been recommended by the injured party’s doctor as part of recovery.


This decision clarifies a previous inconsistency regarding whether massage therapy costs should be paid for by ICBC.


Perhaps in response to this decision, ICBC has changed its policy regarding massage therapy treatments. It appears that ICBC will pay for 20 massage therapy treatments from the date of injury. However, this policy is still not in line with the law, which does not place any restriction on the number of treatments to be paid for.


For more information on ICBC Accident Benefits for medical care and rehabilitation, see our info sheets.