Many car accidents have obvious causes, and fault is easy to determine. For example, many Warrick County, IN car accidents are caused by a driver running a red light, or possibly by a car rear ending another at a stop sign.
However, if the other driver suffered a medical emergency and a serious accident resulted, assigning blame is much more complicated.
Most states recognize that a driver may make a ‘sudden medical emergency defense’ in a car accident. This can relieve the driver from any liability that comes from suffering a medical emergency they could not anticipate that causes a car wreck.
This is because the person who suffered the emergency was not negligent and should not be held legally responsible.
Some states’ laws on this matter may be different than others, but a driver who claims a sudden medical emergency defense usually must prove one of the following:
- That he lost consciousness just before the accident;
- That the loss of consciousness caused the person to lose control of the car; and
- That the loss of consciousness was due to a medical emergency that could not be anticipated.
If the driver can prove each of those, they may not be held liable for your injuries in a car accident.
There are many exceptions within these three points that can make the driver not able to claim this defense, however.
Consider: If the driver is driving along and suddenly feels faint, a reasonable person would pull over rather than continue to drive. If it can be shown in court that the driver had symptoms of feeling faint and did not pull over, it can be argued that the medical emergency was not sudden in nature.
There also are often issues of how foreseeable the medical emergency was in Warrick County, IN. If the driver has a heart attack while driving and he never had heart problems before, this could be viewed as a sudden medical emergency that was unforeseeable. However, if the driver has a history of heart problems and his doctor told him not to drive and he had an accident, then this defense may not work.
If the other driver is able to claim that he had an unforeseeable medical emergency and you have accident injuries, you may not have a source of recovery for the accident. You could have to pay for your injuries and property damage out of pocket.
There are some cases however where the person may claim a sudden medical emergency, but it comes out during the case that he failed to take his seizure medication. In such a situation, the ‘medical emergency’ was actually very foreseeable.
You should remember that in Warrick County, IN, a medical emergency defense can be used. Although it may not sound fair, the state laws of Indiana do allow this defense. If you are in an accident involving this type of defense, you will need to have a very good attorney to fight your case.