As a personal injury law firm, our job is often to hold at-fault parties responsible for automobile accidents. These crashes sometimes involve multiple vehicles, pedestrians, and even homes or other property being struck by automobiles. In some situations, the party at-fault is easy to determine by investigating the police report and seeing causes such as speeding, distraction, or voluntary impairment. In some situations, however, the at-fault party may not be held liable for damages resulting from a crash. One such situation is in the event of an unexpected medical emergency which causes a driver to wreck.
In the event that you or a loved one loses consciousness or experiences a sudden medical emergency while driving in Georgia, it is not possible to be held liable legally as long as you were not aware of the imminent threat beforehand. In Georgia, crashes caused by inevitable physical causes are considered to be an “Act of God”. These events may include sudden illness or death and can include no human agency involvement. Unforeseeable medical conditions can only be considered unexpected if the person was not forewarned by a medical professional of the possibility. Georgia law states that the Act of God defense can be used only if an ailment causes a driver to lose consciousness suddenly, which is completely unforeseeable. On the other hand, if a driver has any reason to expect their own loss of consciousness prior to a crash, they may not be held as innocent.
If you begin feeling light-headed or ill while operating a vehicle, it is always best to pull over as soon as possible and seek medical assistance. Unexpected medical emergencies occur every day and no one is exempt.
Even if you are in perfect health, it is important to be aware of your rights and Georgia motor vehicle laws. Most individuals who find themselves in a position of defending themselves in a crash involving a sudden medical emergency were not aware that they would be facing that feat beforehand.