Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Legal Wrangling Ends!

That's correct, ladies and gentlemen, Needlenoggin's suit against those responsible for his accident has come to a close. Thanks, in large part, to the great law firm we were referred to, the defendants settled out of court, and the spectre of never-ending-mountains of debt has finally passed.

Now, to answer your very pressing questions.

How much?
None of your business. :) Seriously, though, remember that whatever the amount, a third went to the lawyer AND MediCal demands payment back for his weeks of rehab, his wheelchair, his surgeries and all of his medications (the bill from them alone was hundreds of thousands of dollars). Then Needlenoggin owed over $70,000 in back rent, food, clothing, medical services, and now he'll have to pay for all of his medications and doctors out of pocket until the healthcare disaster in this country gets fixed... You get the idea.

Are you going to tell us anything?
Yes. The settlement bought a house in Portland, Oregon for Needlenoggin (pictured below):

3 bedrooms, and a space for a live-in-nurse to live on the premises, since he'll likely need assistance for the rest of his life. It also paid to have the home fenced and ramped, the carpet torn out and make it wheelchair accessible. Then he'll get a check every month that should cover his medical expenses, utilities and pharmaceuticals. It should even probably buy him food.

He still is unable to work, but we're hoping he'll be able to get up and around and start working at least part-time eventually. From his one lump sum he has a few charity donations he is planning on doing, as well as buying some furniture (moving out of the hospital bed!) and some random electronic crap, but he's been very cautious about how he's been spending his money, with (almost) no large amounts spent.

As for us, we're moving in 2 weeks, right along with Needlenoggin, into a home of our very own:

The new house is about 8 miles from where Needlenoggin will be living, and right off of a bus line so he can come visit any time he'd like. He chose to buy his home in Portland because he knew it was where we wanted to go live, and he gifted us money for the down payment on our home.

And, since we no longer need the wheelchair van, we are arranging to sell it, and Needlenoggin has given Tuffy the money to buy a car for our family, as a thank you for this last year. We found a very nice, used Toyota Highlander on Craigslist (still under warranty) and bought it. We were incredibly touched, as we've been the recipient of his two big checks.

Anyway, the cancer issue isn't resolving itself, and Dingo is still limping about, but she's alive, home, and we're packing for the MOVE! Here's the photo of us all out celebrating the end of the lawsuit at Skates On The Bay.