April 2019 FLATTMANN FILES “Quality Is No Accident”
THE LIFE AND TIMES OF GEORGE P. BURDELL
FROM THE DESK OF Grady Flattmann
Did you know that if you accept a settlement for a personal injury accident, the insurance company will require you to sign a release agreement that makes it your responsibility to reimburse any third parties who may have an interest in your settlement? This includes outstanding medical bills and the reimbursement interest of your own health insurance company (including Medicare). Settlement releases typically include an “indemnity” agreement. This means you agree to protect and defend the other insurance company if a third party comes knocking at their door demanding to be paid out of the settlement funds you received. Once you sign a release, the insurance company is out of the picture and you are on your own. A big part of our job is administrating settlements and making sure that our clients don’t run into trouble once their case is resolved. This can be a very complicated process and includes keeping our clients compliant with their own health insurance, negotiating medical reimbursements, and jumping through hoops with Medicare.
O ne of the M ost E laborate P ranks in H istory
Whether April Fools’ Day is a time-honored western tradition or a tired, unfunny festival of eyerolls depends on who you ask. Ask the mom who just got blasted with water via the old “rubber band on the sink sprayer” trick, and you’ll probably find the latter. But ask the kid who planted the trap, and you’ll get a hearty, cackling endorsement. Even if you’re sick of watching your back on April Fools’ Day and tired of the corporate cash grabs masquerading as (mostly) bad jokes that pop up like clockwork every year, you still have to give it up for the classics. Even the most bitter among us must admit that some pranks are so clever, elaborate, and inspired that they deserve their place in the annals of history. The name “George P. Burdell” will certainly reverberate through the hall of hoaxes for decades to come. Never make a clerical error with a young student who has too much time on his hands. In 1927, when William Edgar Smith was mistakenly sent a second enrollment form for the Georgia Institute of Technology, he had an idea. Combining the name of his then-principal, George P. Butler, with Burdell, the maiden name of his best friend’s mother, he enrolled the fictitious George P. Burdell in the prestigious university. Next, Smith signed Burdell up for all his same classes and, for the next four years, completed every bit of his schoolwork twice — once under his own name and once under Burdell’s, changing a few details here and there and varying his handwriting slightly so as not to raise suspicion. GEORGE COMES TO LIFE
If you are handling your own settlement, make sure to consider what happens after you sign a
release. For more information, check out our website and download our free book: The Essential Guide to Car Accident Claims in Louisiana.
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