4.10.2008

The Bug vs. The Yukon

I was in a car accident last May, the day after I discovered I was pregnant. I was leaving work in my little VW Bug when a GMC Yukon decided to make a u-turn. I was in the left lane, he was in the right. He slammed right into the passenger side of my car. The damage was extensive, the entire right side of my car was totally wrecked. My car would have been undrivable had the security guards at work (who witnessed the whole thing) not done some crazy Macgyver stuff to my front wheel well, allowing me to skip a tow truck. Because we were still in the parking lot at work - which, granted, is actually streets with lots branching off of them - I wasn't going that fast. I got out of my car with the intention of yelling "You idiot, I'm pregnant!!!" which would have been funny since I was only, at that point, about 13 days along. Instead, when I got out of my car, the driver of the Yukon looked at me and said, in a voice intended for a child, "I put my blinker on, darlin'," like I was a freaking idiot. I think my face turned bright red and smoke came out of my ears, because the next thing I knew the security gaurds were leading me away from him, telling me they saw everything and it was his fault. I drove away, secure in my witnesses and the fact that his big Yukon was undrivable.

A month after the accident, my car insurance adjuster called. She said that the insurance company of the man that hit me was contesting full liability. They said that the damage was so severe to my car that I had to have been speeding. She suggested I accept 15% liability for the accident; otherwise it would go to arbitration for the contested amount. I considered accepting the small liability in the interest of closing the case, but my parents and Mike convinced me that was stupid. This was right after I was told I was going to miscarry, so I wasn't at the top of my game! At that point, it had been over 30 days since my accident. My car insurance no longer covered my rental car, so I had switched to a loaner car from the auto body repair shop. About an hour after I spoke with my insurance adjuster, I was rear-ended at a stop light. I had to laugh because I couldn’t believe my crappy luck. Fortunately, the loaner car had little damage and the body shop said not to worry about it.

I called my adjuster the next day, and when I was telling her I wanted to fight the claim, I lost it. I started crying, telling her that I was pregnant at the time of the accident and now I was having complications. She was very nice about the whole thing, considering she probably couldn't understand half of what I was saying on account of the hiccups and sobs. Not five minutes after I hung up with her, the other driver's insurance company called me and said, "you're pregnant! How many extra doctor's appointments have you had? We'll reimburse your co-pay! How would you like $500 dollars for your suffering?" I wanted to laugh, here they were contesting 15% of an accident, yet they were throwing money at me. I knew it was Please Don't Sue Us money, but I didn't have to sign anything waiving my right to sue, so I took it. It was seven hundo, come on!

Now, here we are, almost 11 months after the accident. I had pretty much forgotten about the arbitration case since I had Maddie to occupy my mind. I received two letters from my insurance company. I opened one, and it was a check for $75. The other letter stated that I had won my arbitration case, and the Yukon was 100% at fault. The $75 was to cover the 15% of my copay that I'd had to front to get my car out of the shop. Woo!!! Heather 1, Yukon Driver 0! I'm glad I fought the other company. Even though it amounted to only $75 out of my own pocket, it was the principle of the matter. That, and my insurance probably would have gone up.

I know what you're thinking, and the doctors could never 100% rule out the accident as the cause to all my pregnancy problems. They were fairly certain it didn't impact things at all, but since I hadn't been scanned or examined prior to the accident, no one could be sure. Can you imagine if it HAD been the cause? That insurance company would be out over a million bucks in health costs for Maddie ALONE. That seven hundo is looking pretty good to them right now, isn't it?

3 comments:

Gemini Girl said...

I doubt it had anything to do with the complications since you like you said "were 13 days" along.

My insurance payed all of the girls nicu stays. neve was 425 g's and Soleil's was 650 g's- not including smaller payments here and there.

Our car was also wrecked when I was pg. A car slammed into the back of our car on the highway, sending our car crashing into the vehicle in front of us. The damage was extensive in the fornt, but not the back. Bec of this, it looked like WE were speeding and hit the car in the front, not that a car had hit us! totally sucky. it's a good thing our car was totalled though, it gave us the opportunity to get an suv for the impending babies.


So glad you won! btw, I totally stole your idea of putting your baby's head in the march of dimes ecard. but maddie wins- bec she makes cuter faces!

TUWABVB said...

My comment has nothing to do with the blog entry - I'm sorry. But I happened to click on your Flickr badge and I just have to tell you, Maddie is ADORABLE. Her pictures just mesmorized me and I'm such a fan. What an amazing baby and a strong soul. You all are in my thoughts and prayers every day!

Danes said...

Heh - I vaguely remember the second fender bender........God that seems like a million years ago!