The Alternative English Dictionary: ambulance chaser

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Entry definition

ambulance chaser etymology The origins of this phrase date from 1897, from newspaper articles about attorneys seeking clients through targeted mail solicitation."[]" 15 Jul. 2006 “Ambulance chasing” was one of the descriptive phrases employed by the media for this activity. It later became a derogatory term for direct advertising.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (derogatory) An unethical attorney who solicits business at the scenes of accidents or in hospitals, in exchange for a percentage of the damages that will be recovered in the case.“[ West’s Encyclopedia of American Law, The Gale Group, Inc, 1998.]”, 15 Jul. 2006
    • 2004, Richard Lacayo, "Court and Spark: Edwards' Legal Career," Time, 19 July, Republicans have tried to cast him as a millionaire ambulance chaser, the kind of man who forces doctors and businesses to pay ever higher liability-insurance costs.
  2. (by extension) An attorney who engages in unethical behavior.
  3. (derogatory) An unethical funeral director or person who engages in the unlicensed sale of preneeds or other services to those who do not yet need them in an attempt to increase business.“[ State of Ohio Board of Embalmers and Funeral Directors, minutes, Sep. 17, 2007]” - specific contextual example.
related terms:
  • ambulance chasing

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