If your memory of an accident differs from your statement, it can make it difficult to prove your case. It is important to write down what you remember quickly after an accident so that you can be as accurate as possible. It is also best practice to speak to a lawyer before giving any statement to police or insurance companies.
However, if you have already made a statement and later realized that some part of it was incorrect, you may need to see a medical professional. You may be suffering from memory loss as a result of the accident.
You should also speak to a lawyer. They can help you navigate the complex legal process, protect your rights, and help you get the compensation you deserve. We offer a free consultation, so at the very least, you can seek some no-obligation advice. Contact us today at (941) 444-4444!
Traumatic Brain Injury
Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is a disruption of the normal function of the brain, which can be caused by impact on the head, or when an object pierces the skull. TBI’s can range in severity and can affect your memory of a car accident.
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Post Traumatic Amnesia
If you can’t remember what happened before or after an accident, you may be suffering from post-traumatic amnesia as a result of a traumatic brain injury. There are two basic types of memory loss following a car accident, they are:
Anterograde amnesia is where someone loses their ability to form new memories for a period of time after a car accident and has no memory of what happened after the accident.
Retrograde amnesia is where someone is unable to recall what happened before a car crash.
Symptoms indicating that you may be experiencing memory loss include:
- Difficulty concentrating.
- Inability to organize one’s thoughts.
- Clouded or foggy thinking.
- Feelings of confusion.
- An inability to remember what occurred before or after the crash.
My Statement to Law Enforcement Is Incorrect
Even without suffering traumatic brain injuries, you could still forget important details or confuse the details of what happened. If you gave a statement to police immediately after a car crash, on the way to the hospital, or at the hospital, then many things could have affected your ability to give an accurate statement. Emotions may have been high, and you may have been full of adrenaline or anxiety.
If the police report was not accurate, then you should speak to an experienced accident attorney who can provide legal advice.
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My Statement to the Insurance Company Is Incorrect
Your insurance policy may require you to inform them that an auto accident has occurred within a certain period of time, usually 24 hours. However, there is no law that requires you to give them a statement or details of the accident. You have a right to give yourself enough time to figure out what you want to say, and you may also discuss this with an attorney first.
The other driver’s insurance company may also ask you for a statement. However, you are under no obligation to do so.
It is important to be aware that the goal of an insurance agency is to make a profit, not ensure fair compensation to victims. They will try to lower your settlement if they can, so you need to be careful about what you say. You may have spoken to an insurance adjuster, who is trained to ask the right questions to decrease the amount owed to you.
If you have already given a statement to an insurance company and think it may be incorrect, then you should speak to a car accident attorney as soon as possible.
A Lawyer Can Help Gather Evidence
It can be difficult to prove your version of events, especially if you have already given a statement that is incorrect. For example, perhaps you didn’t remember seeing what the other driver was doing before the accident, but later remember that you saw them looking at their phone. Your attorney can obtain cell phone records to provide evidence for your version of events.
Your attorney will also have a lot of tools at their disposal, such as accident reconstruction specialists and medical professionals. They can look to witness testimony, CCTV, and more to establish strong evidence.
In some cases, such as if you were suffering from head injuries, your attorney might be able to have your original statement suppressed from the record so that it can’t be used.
What to Do After a Car Accident
- Report the accident – In accordance with Florida Statute 316.062, if there has been personal injury or serious property damage, then the police must be called to the scene of an accident.
- Gather information – While at the scene of the accident, if you are able to, then try and exchange information with other drivers, such as registration number, insurance company, name, and contact information. You should also try and get the contact information of any potential witnesses and take photographs of the scene of the accident and any injuries. However, if you need to get to the hospital quickly, then this should be a priority.
- Seek medical treatment immediately – In accordance with Florida Statute 627.736, you have 14 days to seek medical attention in order to make a claim. However, you should seek medical advice as soon as possible. Proper diagnosis of memory loss after a car accident is incredibly important. It might even save your life. Even where the injuries are not life-threatening, proper treatment can speed up your road to recovery. Early medical attention will also help you to prove that your injuries were a result of the accident.
- Speak to an attorney – At the very least, seek a free consultation with an attorney so that they can give you some advice about your initial steps. Before hiring an attorney you should ask them about their past cases and years in service.
- Tell your insurance company – You may need to tell your insurance company about an accident quickly after it happens. However, keep details vague until you have spoken with a lawyer.
- Do not sign anything – Don’t sign any settlements, releases, or waivers related to your crash until you have spoken with your attorney. If you do, you may hinder your right to fair compensation.
Can I Seek Compensation for Short-Term Memory Loss After a Car Accident?
If the accident wasn’t your fault, then you can sue the at-fault driver for both economic and non-economic damages. Including:
- Lost wages – Compensation for any lost wages due to time missed from work, both past and future.
- Medical bills – Medical bills for past and ongoing treatment.
- Property damage – Reimbursement for any property damaged in the accident.
- Pain and suffering – Compensation for your emotional suffering. These types of damages can be highly subjective, but an attorney will know how to maximize the compensation you receive.
What If I Was at-Fault for the Accident?
Even if you were at fault for the accident, you might still be able to claim compensation.
As per Florida Statute 627.7407, Florida is a no-fault state. This means that regardless of who was at fault for the accident, you must first seek compensation from your own insurance company up to the limits of your insurance policy.
Furthermore, Florida operates under a comparative fault system, which is detailed in Florida Statute 768.81. Under this law, you can claim compensation up to the degree to which you are found not to be at fault. For example, if the other driver was on their phone, but you were speeding, you may be found 20% at fault for the accident, and as a result, your eventual settlement could be reduced by 20%.
If your case involves shared fault, then the other party may look to provide evidence to limit their liability. An attorney can make sure you are not taken advantage of and that your liability is fair. It is important to understand that you may not have all the details of your case. You may believe that you are at fault when the other party actually acted more recklessly.
The laws surrounding car accidents and compensation in Florida are complex. An attorney can help you to navigate the system and gain maximum compensation for your injuries.
Get Help From The Law Place Today
If you have been in a car accident and you have given a statement that you now believe to be incorrect, then you should contact The Law Place as soon as possible.
We know how to navigate Florida’s complex legal system and have over 75 years of combined experience. We can consult doctors to confirm your memory loss and help to ensure that documentation for the accident reflects what really happened.
Most of our attorneys are AVVO-rated 10.0. This is the highest rating possible and is awarded based on years in service, awards, client reviews, and more. We take every case seriously and put time and energy into gaining maximum compensation for you.
For a free consultation, call us today on (941) 444-4444!