The Blameless Victim (Paperback)

Our Ten-Year Legal Battle Against Zurich American Insurance and American International Group

By Harold S. Rhodes

Createspace Independent Publishing Platform, 9781499543285, 376pp.

Publication Date: January 27, 2015

List Price: 15.95*
* Individual store prices may vary.


On January 9, 2002, there would be no predicting that a forty-ton tractor-tanker carrying liquid asphalt would crash into Marcia Rhodes's stopped car, leaving the wife and mother paralyzed from the waist down and with extensive secondary medical damages.

This is the story of the Rhodes family's decade-long struggle against the devastating consequences of this crash-horrible medical traumas, an unending financial struggle, a daughter's deep depression and alienation, as well as endless battles against insurance companies and an uncaring legal system.

This is also the story of how Marcia and Harold then did their best to protect future blameless victims against the awful delaying tactics used by insurance companies to deny compensation to crash victims whom they are legally and financially obligated to support.

Harold's daily diary details the crash, Marcia's days in the Intensive Care Unit, how the driver the tractor-tanker avoided significant punishment, as well as the hardship of waiting four years for due compensation, including a completely unnecessary and quite painful personal injury courtroom trial.

Harold's diary then documents the courtroom trial to punish the insurance companies for their delay. The diary includes an amazing "inside-look" at Zurich's claims processing manual as well as at the insurance claims notes and claims transmittals between Zurich and A.I.G.

During this trial, one insurance carrier even declared that it was not notified of this insurance claim for six months after this horrible crash.

(The reader can decide whether these subtle methods were used just to avoid processing this claim.)

The diary concludes with the unthinkable legal decision that was delivered by the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court on February 10, 2012.

Would the Court take this opportunity to protect future blameless victims, by substantially penalizing the insurance companies to the full extent of the law?

Or, would the Court side with the insurance companies, so that future blameless victims would be without protection against these delaying tactics?

From the date of the crash to the final verdict by the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court, The Blameless Victim takes a candid and realistic look at every step of the Rhodes family's fight for justice-in a system that makes no guarantee for even the most blameless victim.

All proceeds from the sales of The Blameless Victim will be given to the Milford Regional Medical Center (Milford, MA).

About the Author

Harold Rhodes mentors newly-injured individuals with spinal cord injuries, making them aware of their legal, insurance, and medical rights. He continues to be the primary caregiver for his wife, Marcia, who was catastrophically injured in January 2002. As Chairman of Milford (MA) Commission on Disability, Harold advocates for persons with disabilities to achieve equal access into businesses located in Milford and into all Milford town facilities. Harold is also a member of the board of trustees of the Milford Regional Healthcare Foundation, and a Corporator of the Milford Regional Medical Center. He is member of the Shining Star Pre-School Council (Milford, MA) for children with special needs and a corporate advisor for the SenseAbility Gym (Hopedale, MA) for children with special needs. Formerly, Harold was a member of the board of directors of the Greater Boston Chapter of the National Spinal Cord Injury Association, which previously provided assistance to his family. Harold and Marcia have resided in the wonderful community of Milford, Massachusetts, for more than thirty years. A graduate of Indiana University and Harvard Business School, Harold previously provided business consulting for emerging and large high-tech companies.