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3 Bumps

Help me with this possible legal matter?

Last year something happened, and if I don't take care of it sometime soon, its going to come back and bite me.
My husband and I were going through a tough time and he left. The next morning, I was very upset and a 'friend' called, who I should have never answered the phone for. I was, of course, upset, talking to her, and when she asked me what I was going to do, I said I was thinking about running away, going to visit my relatives (who live very far away). She told me that sounded pretty 'drastic', and I didn't understand that at the time, but all in all, I got annoyed with her and hung up. 5 minutes later she called back, I wouldn';t answer the phone, but my mom was here with me, and she did. She made me taqlk to the 'friend' on the phone, who promptly told me she called 911 because she thought I was suicidal.
The next events were really difficult for me. Even now, I think I handled it the best way I could have. I most certainly wasn't suicidal, but I was very upset, and going through a very difficult time that I hope to not experience again. I knew (I used to live next door to an EMT) that when you call 911 and report someone suicidal, they send an ambulance, and the cops, and all of this was not something I could afford, nor did I want any of my current neighbors seeing all of this commotion. I knew they would come fast, so I went into the woods behind my house, hoping that they would just go away. After all, I wasn't sitting on top of a building, threatening to jump, I wasn't sitting in a corner, threatening to blow my head off..... I had no reasonable... means, or desire to do that. And I didn't want to deal with the backdraft of it all. Cops got there, followed a trail and spotted me. I told them I was fine, but they were,.... just douches. They told me I was suicidal, and if I wasn't, that was okay, I was at least crazy, and I had to get in the 'meat wagon' and go off to the 'nut hatch'. They backed this up with the fact that I was sitting in the middle of my woods and they had to 'chase me through the mud'. They told me if I didn't get up and go with the EMTs, they would arrest me.
The rest of a long story short.... I went to the hospital. I was nice to the EMTs, but I told them I didn't want to sign anything because I didn't want to go with them in the first place because I wasn't suicidal. At the hospital, the doctor released me right away. There was no 'nut hatch'. He did think I was slightly depressed, but not a danger to myself or anyone else, after I had told him the situation and how I happened to get there in the first place. My husband was told what happened, he came to get me, hugged, cried, he flipped on the 'friend' who did this to me, and it took about a week for life to go slightly back to normal.
I say it took a while because I was so ashamed it happened to me. This was all in November, and really, it took me all of this time to get to a point where I would even seek this advice out anonoymously online.... I can't talk to MOST of my friends about it. Just one, and she doesn't know what I should do.....
The problem is,... now I have this 1600 bill for an ambulance ride. This is why I went into the woods in the first place. Half of our problems at the time were money related,... and this 'friend' of mine, without me hinting that I cared to hurt myself, called 911 and guaranteed me a huge bill that I would have otherwise not had.
When the ambulance company called me shortly after to collect money, I wanted to dispute it. They told me that if I didn't want to go, thewy wouldn't have made me. I told her the cops made me go. She still insisted if I was halfway calm (which I was) and told them I didn't want to go, I wouldn't have had to. She sympathized with me, but pretty muchy told me that anyone off of the street could have called and they would have come for me, lie or not. The only difference was, she said I wouldn't have had to go if I didn't want to. I was ADAMENT about not going. I even told the cops I couldn't afford the bill and I was considering the handcuff option til he whipped them out. I've never been arrested, and I never have had any of this happen before. I don't know what to do, I cant afford this bill, that I have managed not to pay. But someday I will have to, or ruin my credit. Do I have to get a lawyer? Against the cops? I just have no idea what to do. I signed NOTHING in the ambulance or at the hospital because I didn't want to be legally responsible for something I didn't bring upon myself. If someone has any kind of advice or help to offer, I'd really appreciate it. It has taken me 6 months to even try to face this situation, because I know I will have to someday. Thanks for bothering to read, and for any words or ideas at all you can offer up!

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Anonymous

Asked by Anonymous at 4:04 PM on May. 16, 2011 in Money & Work

Answers (5)
  • I would tale the "friend" to small claims court and sue her for the money and even more for a false report
    mommy_of_two388

    Answer by mommy_of_two388 at 4:09 PM on May. 16, 2011

  • if you didnt sign the papers saying that you accepted the bill you shouldnt have to pay..but if they wanted to persist this i would politely mail the bill to the so called friend...maybe you can get a copy of the police report if there was one and maybe they made comments that you really didnt want to go and maybe that will help
    jorjiegirl

    Answer by jorjiegirl at 4:09 PM on May. 16, 2011

  • Start by writing a letter to the paramedic company. Tell them that they responded to a fake 911 report and took you, against your will and unnecessarily. At the hospital, the doctor's let you go because the report was false. Include the paperwork.

    Unfortunately, because you initially threatened to run away, and because you ran, it doesn't help your case much :( I think they would have expected you to call 911 right away to set it straight before personel arrived.

    But, start with the letter, and see if that helps.
    ImaginationMama

    Answer by ImaginationMama at 4:14 PM on May. 16, 2011

  • I agree with jorgiegirl. Your claim is that the call was a fake 911. The police report should back up that you were forced to get in the ambulance against your will.
    As for your friend, she does deserve to pay for the ambulance, but I doubt you can actually make her. If she truly was a friend she should offer.
    babytriana

    Answer by babytriana at 4:25 PM on May. 16, 2011

  • You might have to end up paying something and chalk it up to experience. I would do what has been recommended, put some paperwork in the mail to the ambulance company, but also ask for a discount if you have no insurance, are not working, or are under some general financial hardship (other bills, etc) Ask for a discount on your bill.
    dwmom2008

    Answer by dwmom2008 at 4:53 PM on May. 16, 2011

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