Friday, September 9, 2011

My frightening encounter with Ambulance Chaserus

ambulance chaser
n. Slang
1. A lawyer who obtains clients by persuading accident victims to sue for damages.
2. A lawyer avid for clients.

To think that I made it this far in life and never encountered one of these creatures. That's all about to end though. My insurance company called today to tell me I'm being served with papers in a lawsuit brought by the elusive, enigmatic species known as Ambulance Chaserus.

Apparently this whole debacle started with an accident I had last Oct. I was looking for trucks on Front St. and didn't notice the Jeep stopped in front of me til it was too late to come to a complete stop. I tapped the car in front of me -- TAPPED being the operative word. There was minor damage to both cars but it literally wasn't visible to the untrained eye. My insurance told me the woman bumped her head and sought treatment for her injury. She looked absolutely fine and I didn't hear anything else about it so I thought it was a done deal. Until today.

In the interim between my accident and my now pending lawsuit, I cosigned with my daughter for a loan on her first "nice" car. It was a 2006, but it was super cute and she loved it. Three weeks later she was coming home on K7 at 11:30 at night and two farmers had let their black cows stray. Another driver hit the smaller cow, killing it instantly. My daughter hit the second, larger cow,which totaled her new car. The poor cow had to be shot. My daughter was burned by the airbags, cut by all the flying glass from the shattered windshield and bruised all over from the impact. Luckily though, she was OK.

We're asking for the farmer's insurance to pay for my daughter's emergency room visit to check for broken bones or other trauma. The bill came to around $3,000.

The woman whose car I tapped? She's suing for $65,000.

Of course I'm dumbfounded by this suit. It's within the limits of my coverage,but that is so NOT the point. The point is someone actually has the balls to try to profit from the minorest of accidents while my daughter, who's lucky to be alive is simply asking for her minor bills to be paid.

I've been instructed not to speak with the ambulance chaser if it tries to make contact, and I may never even see it in person. But it's out there, scouring every nook and cranny for another frivolous lawsuit to file. For my part, I hope the papers I'm served are as close as I'll ever get to an actual encounter with the beast.