Is a Driver Who Loses Consciousness and Causes an Accident at Fault?

Video Transcription:
When someone causes an accident in Florida by driving a car, holding them responsible means proving that they were negligent or at fault. It is not uncommon for someone who blacks out in an accident to claim that they had a sudden unexpected loss of consciousness, sometimes referred to as a sudden medical emergency and that they are seeking to be found not responsible because of this sudden unexpected loss of consciousness.

The test in Florida really is whether they can prove that they actually lost consciousness or a capacity before the impact and whether that was sudden and whether that was unexpected or not medically anticipated. So, certainly you'd never simply take the word or the position of the person who makes this defense. The question is whether in looking into their background it can be proven that in fact it was sudden and unexpected.

The classic example is someone who has been told or been told in their medical records that they have a condition which may result in them having black outs or losing consciousness from time to time. A diabetic comes to mind. Someone who is taking a medication that has the effect of making a black out or loss of consciousness. Or, perhaps someone who's prescribed medication but in fact not taking it. The other thing we are looking for is do they have a history of this having happened in the past or have they been warned that this is something that may happen to them and it simply came to pass.

So, when someone makes this claim of a sudden medical emergency, their background, their medical records, their conduct and their relationship with their physician in terms of what has been said in the past, need to be examined very carefully to determine if in fact they can prove that it was sudden and unexpected as they are claiming.

Jim Dodson
A Florida injury lawyer, family man and avid cyclist who clients have trusted for over 25 years.