View Poll Results: Should parents profit off their child's injury

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  • Yes, to an extent

    6 15.38%
  • No

    33 84.62%
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Thread: need some advice

  1. #11
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    Can you affford a lawyer? If so, get one. Tell your parents you've had enough of their crap. Give them the cabin with a few acres, sell 20 acres and with the money you get from that, build your own batcave - Batman. They're not entitled or deserve anything else. Your lawyer should be able to come up with a way to show you're in financial hardship and therefore unable to pay financial support to your parents.

    PS - don't ever let them play victim for something that happened to you... My parents penchant for playing the victim has torn me and them apart...
    Last edited by Mutley; 02-07-2013 at 10:53 PM. Reason: change of heart on divorce
    Everybody wants freedom.... They just don't want it for everybody else...

    A college professor, a man I now consider my dad, once told me...
    "The minute you let someone decide what you can and cannot do, your life is no longer yours." A truer word has never been spoken in my opinion.


    Professor Bill Johnston
    (1930- )

  2. #12
    Hi Crppled007,

    Seems like you're in quite a conundrum. It's true that an agreement is an agreement and under usual circumstances should be kept. But I think there are special circumstances in your case that need to be taken into consideration. At the time of your injury, when you agreed to your parent's "request" for a cut of YOUR money, you were under a great deal of stress. Perhaps even under a form of coercion or duress. A lifetime altering injury like a C-4 SCI must have left you feeling very vulnerable and dependent upon your parents. Hell, even if you weren't injured, at age 16 you were dependent upon them or more accurately, they were legally obligated to care for you until age 18. There's a reason why minors can't enter into contractual agreements and it's because minors aren't mature enough to make informed and difficult decisions. And your thread here demonstrates the validity and even common sense of that law. I'm not sure exactly how old you were when the "deal" was struck but you were certainly at a disadvantage in taking on a life-long financial obligation. It could be argued that because of your young age and the severity of your injury that you were being taken advantage of. A person's life gets stuck in neutral for awhile, especially a growing teenager's, after they've been catastrophically injured.

    If you have enough money to last you, your wife, your potential children and your parents until your actuarially determined death, then keep things as they are. But if you're beginning to run short of money then you better reconsider the agreement. We all know how expensive it is to be SCI'd. I'm just a para and know how much more it costs me to live with this expensive injury. Just last month, after living a month without a light in my bathroom, would be willing to pay someone 20 bucks to replace the damn thing. I got by with my hallway light and a special battery powered LED lamp but I live alone and sometimes my family and the few friends that I still have left just aren't around. And that was just a stupid fluorescent ceiling light. Another case more to the cost point, after having c-spine surgery 2 months ago with a leg that's been broken (completely in half- swingin' to n' fro!) since August, I was forced to pay $215 out of pocket to a medical transport company. Just for a 40 mile ride home from a 2 day stay at a skilled nursing facility because I couldn't get into a car. Our special medical needs are outrageously priced.

    Be diplomatic about it (and perhaps secretly consult a lawyer before having "the discussion") but try not to don't burn any bridges with your parents. Explain to them that things and times have changed and you can no longer afford to pay them anymore of your limited settlement. Be it 15 or 30%. Maybe give them a year or whatever time you feel is enough to wean them off your generosity. You're beginning a new family and if your resources are limited it's incumbent upon and even responsible of you to get your priorities in order.

    Since your parents are still happily married it shouldn't be too big of a burden on your father to get out of the cabin and move back in with your mother. Hey, then maybe you'll get to sleep in a real bed the next time you go there! I don't think it was very cool of your father, after all those years, to not have made the cabin fully accessible to you. He was in essence depriving you of your half. (Deprivation of property) He really seems to like the place... it's time for you (and your wife) to get some pleasure out of it. Or at least switch things around and have your father sleep in the livingroom on a mattress on the floor since you'll be needing the bed for you and your spouse. Or sell the cabin and property if funds are getting tight. Be careful though, it's not a seller's market right now. I wonder who's name is on the mortgage? I hope it's your's or both of your names. That might get nasty.

    If they aren't understanding of your new life and priorities maybe your mother should point that "gold digger" finger the other way. I'm not informed enough to be making judgments about some of these things but you did ask for opinions. I hope I'm not hurting your feelings in anyway. It's too late now since you're already married but I sure hope the love between you and your wife is strong and stays that way because in this day and age pre-nups do have their place. You need that money more than anyone else in your life's picture. You never know, like me you may need a lightbulb replaced or an expensive ride in a medical transport vehicle!

    I'm a atheist but have read somewhere in the Bible about familial relationships. Something about when you get married you "cleave" to your wife and leave your parents. So your wife comes first. Of course if your parents were in dire need of your help I'm sure you'd do right by them but it's time for them (you shouldn't have to) to cut the umbilical cord and the apron strings and get off their quadriplegic son's freebie teat.

    There shouldn't be a problem if everyone shows their true colors and true love for one another and understands the predicament you as a disabled quadriplegic find yourself in. And as I touched on before, if your parents find themselves in financial difficulty, the 110 acres and cabin can be sold and they can live off their half for as long as it lasts. I guess it depends largely on how much money you still have left but you seem to have lived quite stoically in the past. It's now time for you and your wife to make a nice comfy home together and to especially buy you brand spankin' new G-damn 60 inch widescreen!

    I hope everything works out well for everyone and can all get along like loving families are supposed to.

    Take care Crppled007.

    Bob.
    "Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a great battle." - Philo of Alexandria

  3. #13
    Super Moderator Sue Pendleton's Avatar
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    I'm with Bob and for many of the same reasons. Definitely talk to a lawyer first. And two things to think about, or three. If you split the land so they keep the cabin (if this is financially feasible now) they could chose to rent out their main home or the cabin. live in the other and get some more bucks that way. Later, you could build an accessible cabin for you and your wife on your half. Yes, this will take a lawyer. Second, no they are not entitled to cash in exchange for your pain after you moved out of their home and managed your own care. Your wife, whether she works outside the home or not, needs to have some security in her older years so buy a term life insurance policy for her and start truly building a home not a house and if possible travel when you are well. And third, at the ages your parents are now, guessing, they may be paying a lot more in Medicare Part B because of the extra cash and losing it means in a year they will have smaller premiums.

    I think when this was first initiated they talked to a lawyer who told them that a settlement for their pain and suffering would end when you turned 18, finished college or left home but would not be for their lifetime. Did you ever talk about why they asked that their heartache be included in your settlement instead of filing on their own?

    I would talk to a lawyer first and then, as calmly as possible, your parents. Families, to me, should work like this...have they made wills and are you the primary benficiary after the last parent dies? If you are then let them know that you will do all you can to help them if one of them or both of them need help in the future to the extent you can help. I would hope having seen your life they bought long term care insurance a long time back. Let them know this is not punitive but being done to maintain your health and the security of your own marriage into the future. This is how a family should work this out. Talk about all the assets you all have and treat this as joint problem to keep you all well and secure until your last days. If they are not open to this you have my sympathy. It's not easy to introduce this kind of communication later in life.
    Good luck.
    Courage doesn't always roar. Sometimes courage is the quiet voice at the end of the day saying, "I will try again tomorrow."

    Disclaimer: Answers, suggestions, and/or comments do not constitute medical advice expressed or implied and are based solely on my experiences as a SCI patient. Please consult your attending physician for medical advise and treatment. In the event of a medical emergency please call 911.

  4. #14
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    I totally agree with Jody. Your life is still a struggle every day and you are still affected. They are not. And what is more, it is a parents JOB to take care of their children in such an event. It makes sense that you helped them out with expenses when they were actually incurring them, but now that is all over and they are taking your money out of laziness (no offense, I know they are your parents).
    I would just explain the obvious. That the money was to help with expenses related to YOUR INJURY, and now that they have nothing to do with it anymore there is no reason they need to get any more of it.
    For those that say you made an agreement and should stick to it, I don't agree. You were young then. In my opinion, any reasonable logical person can see that it doesnt make any sense at all for them to still be getting money. Just expect that they will be upset. But know that you are right.

  5. #15
    it sounds bonkers that your parents are getting your payments. you are the only person entitled to that money. How could your parents even think they are still your carer when you don't even live with them?.

    Jeez, yes get a lawyer!...I'm sure you'd win the case no worries. The time to fight is now!!

    If you have a diary recording their bizarre behaviour over this amount of time surely that alone would bury them (metaphorically speaking of course).

    You have lost Income, at least one marriage, your dignity and the worst thing is that you are disabled because of a faulty friggin jack. if the jack didn't bust you might still even have normal parents.

    You have my admiration for tolerating this stupid situation for so long.
    "The problem with self improvement is knowing when to quit." "Diamond" David Lee Roth.

  6. #16
    IMO mediation is the first step. Only get a lawyer if you're ready to go to war (and pay for the privilege).

    I can understand your loyalty and reluctance to pull the financial rug from under your folks. But remember, your parents were duty bound to care for you --for free-- as long as you were a minor or student living in their house. That's the obligation they undertook when the conceived you.

    If you were under 18 when you entered into this agreement with them you may have no legal obligation to to continue paying them. They're not going to like it but you have other responsibilities now. They should understand this and that your settlement was to provide for YOUR long term care --not to underwrite their lifestyle. Frankly, they'll either get over it or they won't so be prepared. Good luck.

  7. #17
    Super Moderator Sue Pendleton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Randyman View Post
    IMO mediation is the first step. Only get a lawyer if you're ready to go to war (and pay for the privilege).

    I can understand your loyalty and reluctance to pull the financial rug from under your folks. But remember, your parents were duty bound to care for you --for free-- as long as you were a minor or student living in their house. That's the obligation they undertook when the conceived you.

    If you were under 18 when you entered into this agreement with them you may have no legal obligation to to continue paying them. They're not going to like it but you have other responsibilities now. They should understand this and that your settlement was to provide for YOUR long term care --not to underwrite their lifestyle. Frankly, they'll either get over it or they won't so be prepared. Good luck.
    It sounds like they waited until he was 18 to settle the case so he could be named as beneficiary and not his parents.
    Courage doesn't always roar. Sometimes courage is the quiet voice at the end of the day saying, "I will try again tomorrow."

    Disclaimer: Answers, suggestions, and/or comments do not constitute medical advice expressed or implied and are based solely on my experiences as a SCI patient. Please consult your attending physician for medical advise and treatment. In the event of a medical emergency please call 911.

  8. #18
    If they were still caring for you then I could see them getting paid but your out on your own and married and they shouldn't be taking money from you. Nor should they once you no longer needed help from them. Doesn't makes sense to me one bit.


    Get a lawyer and best of luck to you!

  9. #19
    sorry I haven't gotten back thanks everyone for their input. I understand that parents shouldn't live off of their children, we have always gotten along never hateful or anything towards each other. I think it was just the fact that I haven't grown up , and gotten real about it all. I don't think a lawyer should be brought in just yet, I just need to open up a dialogue about it all with them about it all. It really hurts my wife seeing that they get to go on their rendezvous's (1840s style) all the time, and go everywhere else and not getting the help that she needs from them, especially since they get money from me. I was 18 when I got it and I was an emotional wreck. So let them take care of all the financial part of it, but I'm putting my wife is the beneficiary.

    I've been blessed with the caregiver that has been with me for 20 years, And he just recently had to stop coming in the mornings. So now he's just year three times a week for my showers. That leaves my wife (post 20 years. Also) and my roommate, which he has been a godsend, taking care of me. My wife is at the breaking point of leaving me because I refuse to see the big picture, I think I was/am in denial but and realizing that I just need to man up and be her caregiver emotionally. Because I have checked out of that a long time ago, I would have to start a new topic just for that!
    C4 incomplete since 1985

  10. #20
    Hey man,I wouldn't name your wife as bemeficiary if you think she will leave you.I would just worry about yourself and the others can do what they want.Money makes people act very strange...They think they have a right to your money when YOU will need it for care...the rest of your life.
    Good luck with it all....
    Nelson
    C-6,complete

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