Christmas Tree-Tossing Hobby Costs Woman Big

Kamila Grabska's $825K suit for 2017 car crash injuries nixed after she won unusual competition
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 26, 2024 8:07 AM CST
Woman Hurls Christmas Tree, Loses $825K Injury Claim
Stock photo.   (Getty Images/Xenlumen)

If you're going to claim serious injuries from a car crash have left you unable to work or play with your kids, entering a Christmas tree-throwing contest probably shouldn't be on your to-do list as your case winds its way through the courts. Kamila Grabska found that out the hard way after an Irish court dismissed her $825,000 insurance company lawsuit, following the emergence of a photo showing her not only taking part in the unusual tree-hurling competition but winning the women's division. Per the Irish Independent, which first reported on the case, the mother of two was involved in a 2017 car accident that she says left her with debilitating back and neck injuries that wouldn't even allow her to lift a heavy bag of groceries, let alone hold down a job.

Grabska, now 36, filed a suit against RSA Insurance after her vehicle was rear-ended in Ennis, and she recently described to the High Court in Limerick how she still experienced pain daily, though on good days she could take walks with her kids and do some light housework. On bad days, she noted, she wouldn't be able to get out of bed until noon and required pain meds. But a photo emerged in court that had been published in the Independent in January 2018, just months after she was in the accident, showing Grabska throwing a 5-foot-long spruce in the contest, reports the Guardian.

When asked in court by an attorney for the insurance company if she'd ever told her doctors that she'd been involved in a Christmas tree-throwing contest, Grabska replied, "No, because I forgot." Footage was also seen in court that showed Grabska playing and wrestling for more than an hour with her "large and strong" Dalmatian. After seeing the video and pictorial evidence, Judge Carmel Stewart dismissed Grabska's case. "It is a very large, natural Christmas tree and it is being thrown by her in a very agile movement," Stewart said in court. "I'm afraid I cannot but conclude the claims were entirely exaggerated." (More Ireland stories.)

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