When Medical Issues Cause A Florida Car AccidentJacksonville Accident News
Distracted driving, failure to yield the right of way, drunk driving, and others are the most commonly known causes of car accidents on the streets of Florida and across the United States. In these cases, it’s perfectly clear to tell who is at fault and should be held responsible. One of the less common causes of a motor vehicle crash is a medical issue.
Medical issues can include a sudden stroke, allergic reaction, or heart attack among other medical emergencies. However, some medical issues can be less obvious, such as undiagnosed dementia, but they can still cause serious wrecks with severe injuries. Some medical conditions like diabetes can have no effect on the individual’s daily driving unless there is an emergency with the condition.
We know what you’re thinking. What happens if a medical issue is the cause of an accident? Can the driver of the car still be held accountable? Am I still able to file a claim if a medical issue was the cause of my accident?
What Are Some Medical Conditions That Can Affect A Person’s Ability To Drive?
While some medical conditions don’t directly affect a person’s ability to drive, they can still cause issues that make driving unsafe. Statistics have shown that roughly 20 percent of all car accidents in the United States have been caused by medical issues. Some examples of medical conditions that can make driving dangerous include:
- Heart Disease- Most people with heart disease can drive a car. However, it severely depends on the individual’s symptoms. Some symptoms such as shortness of breath, fatigue, and a likeness to lose consciousness can make driving dangerous and should be checked by a medical professional regularly
- Epilepsy- This can be extremely dangerous while on the road and can potentially lead to a car accident. Epilepsy and other seizure disorders cause drivers to lose control of their vehicles, ending in catastrophe. People with epilepsy in Florida can get a driver’s license, but after they have had at least 2 years free of seizures, or unless they apply to the Medical Advisory Board after 6 months. Even at the 6 month period, the licensee should be carefully monitored by a medical professional.
- Diabetes- Sudden spikes and drops in a diabetic’s blood sugar can blur their vision, making it difficult to see while driving. Long-term diabetes can cause nerve damage in the feet and legs, which can make it difficult to feel the pedals.
If you have been in an accident with an individual with a diagnosed medical condition, it may mean that they have restrictions on their license. These restrictions are based on the specific medical condition and the severity of the condition. Some of these conditions may need to be regularly checked with the individual’s doctor in order to keep their license.
Can A Driver With A Medical Issue Be Held Accountable?
We know that dealing with an accident caused by a medical issue is a tricky subject. Depending on the situation, it can be challenging to determine whether the driver is at fault or not. One rule of thumb is if a driver has a medical condition that can make driving unsafe and refuses to do anything to have it treated, then they can be held liable for an accident.
In some cases, malpractice or misdiagnosis can cause a medical issue that leads to an accident. Doctors can prescribe the wrong medication or fail to give a warning to drivers about how certain medications can affect their ability to drive. Manufacturing companies can incorrectly label a drug or fail to indicate on the label that a certain drug can cause drowsiness.
What Kind Of Damages Can I Recieve If The Other Driver Had A Medical Emergency?
Regardless of who is at fault, if you have been in an accident involving a driver with a medical issue, it is extremely important to get to the bottom line of who is liable. With the help of a dedicated Florida car accident attorney, you can hold those who are responsible for your injuries accountable for their actions. The other driver’s insurance company may try to deny your claim due to what is called a medical emergency defense. Some of the damages you may be able to recover from an accident involving a medical emergency include but are not limited to:
- Medical Expenses- These are all of the expenses associated with the injuries caused by the accident including costs of treatment, physical therapy, surgeries, and more. This can also cover future medical expenses based on the future medical needs of the injured party.
- Lost Wages- This includes any wages you would have earned if you didn’t have to take off work to recover from your injuries. This can also cover future lost wages based on the extent of your injuries if you need time off for future doctor appointments and surgeries.
- Pain And Suffering- Includes the physical pain and mental anguish you went through as a result of your accident and your injuries.
- Loss Of Consortium- Loss of consortium mainly pertains to married couples. This term is used when a marital relationship suffers due to one of the spouse’s injuries. The injured spouse is no longer able to have a normal marital relationship.
Speaking With A Skilled Florida Car Accident Attorney
Have you or someone you love been seriously injured in a car accident where a medical issue was the cause? Our dedicated and compassionate auto accident lawyers at Sheftall Law are here to answer any questions you may have about your unique situation and will help you determine if you have a claim. We understand the complexities of medical issues and with decades of combined experience, you can be confident in our team’s ability to advocate for your needs and rights, and we will ensure that you get the maximum compensation that you deserve. Call us today at (904)-638-7712 to schedule your free, no-obligation, and confidential consultation.