Car Accidents or Truck Accidents Caused by a Sudden Medical Emergency
A less common but not totally unusual Cleveland car accident or truck accident involves what is called a sudden medical emergency. Imagine that you’re driving along I- 71 when all of a sudden a truck going in the other direction crosses the median and slams into your car, causing serious injuries to you, your wife, and family. It seems clear that the truck driver and even his employer are at fault. But then you find that the driver’s insurance company says that he’s not at fault because of something called a “sudden medical emergency.” At Rubin Guttman and Associates, we are experienced Cleveland truck accident lawyers who often win compensation for our clients for their injuries even when the at fault driver claims a sudden medical emergency.What Is a Sudden Medical Emergency?
As with any Ohio car accident the burden of proving fault, or liability, is on the party who claims that the other driver was at fault. In this case, you would have the burden of proving that the truck driver went left of center and hit your car. This doesn’t sound terribly difficult and, generally, it isn’t, but in a sudden medical emergency case, the at fault driver claims that even though he went left of center, crossed the median and hit your car he is not at fault because an unforeseeable medical emergency caused him to lose consciousness, even for a moment, and lose control of his truck. The key here is “an unforeseeable medical emergency.” So, if the driver lost consciousness and this had never happened to him before, he probably experienced a sudden medical emergency and can’t be held responsible for the accident. But if truck driver suffered from epilepsy and had a history of experiencing seizures which caused him to lose consciousness and chose to drive anyway, then the sudden medical emergency was “foreseeable.” In that case he is responsible for the accident because he chose to drive knowing that there was a real possibility that he would lose consciousness and be unable to control his truck. He could have prevented the accident by simply not driving.
To determine whether a claim by a driver that he could not avoid a collision because of a sudden medical emergency, your Ohio personal injury lawyer has to be very knowledgeable about the medical issues in the case. Unlike a typical personal injury case, in which only the plaintiff’s (the party suing for injuries) records will be gathered in order to prove the case, an experienced Cleveland trucking accident lawyer will know that he or she must gather all of the defendant’s (the at fault party) medical records, not just from the collision in question, but for at least five years preceding the accident. This will enable your lawyer to review the defendant’s medical history and determine whether the other driver knew or should have known that he had heart problems, severe diabetes, a history of seizures, or any other medical condition which would make it more likely that he would suffer an attack and lose control of his vehicle. Another issue will be whether the individual in question had these conditions but failed to take necessary medications. Any or all of these acts or omissions may demonstrate negligence (a failure to exercise due care) and result in the defendant being found at fault or liable for the accident
In short, disproving a claim of sudden medical emergency by a driver who causes an accident will require an aggressive, experienced and knowledgeable Cleveland personal injury lawyer.Schedule a Free Consultation with a Motor Vehicle Collision Attorney in Cleveland
Car accidents are among the most disruptive and stressful situations that you can face. While dealing with insurance companies and shouldering significant costs, you may also be coping with painful injuries. It only adds to your pain and suffering when the party who caused your injuries claims that she was not responsible because of a sudden medical emergency. At Rubin Guttman & Associates, our car crash lawyers proudly serve victims of rear-end collisions and other types of accidents, such as failure to yield accidents, in Beachwood, Cleveland, Parma, Lakewood, Euclid, Cleveland Heights, South Euclid, Strongsville, Akron, Columbus, Chardon, Toledo, Youngstown, Ravenna, Elyria, Lorain, and Mentor, among other cities. To set up your free consultation, call us at (888) 488-8529 or contact us online.