Brought to you by Zarzaur Law, P.A. – Attorney Joe Zarzaur talks about delayed diagnosis following a motor vehicle accident and whether you can still bring a personal injury case forward.

I recently had a potential client call me and they basically said they had a wreck but there was a lot of stuff going on, so they just got initial treatment and did not follow up – until…

The client went to the doctor, and they thought it was just a sprain or strain. The ER is not there to diagnose you after a car wreck. They’re there to make sure you don’t have something life-threatening, and you end up with a generic diagnosis of cervical strain or lumbar strain.

A year later he realized that the car wreck caused a tear in a ligament and was going to need rotator cuff surgery. Now he has a very serious car wreck injury that he didn’t act on immediately and he wanted to know if he has a case still.

Well, the answer to the question is you could still have a case in Florida unless you’re involved in a wreck with a government associated vehicle. You have four years to bring the case. That means you can bring the lawsuit anytime between the date that wreck happens four-year anniversary of that event.

The statute of limitations for personal injury cases in Florida, including car accident cases, is four years.

It doesn’t help your case that there’s a big gap between the time of when the wreck happens and the time you make the connection, as long as there’s no intervening wrecks or trauma to that same area of your body and as long as we have some idea that there was an injury initially then we can generally piece together using the medical records, the medical causation portion of the case and usually can make out a case of liability for the client.

Medical Causation – You must now demonstrate that the accident caused injury to you. A plaintiff must show that his/her injury would not have resulted “but for” the defendant’s action or omission.

It wasn’t until 10 months later that our client had an MRI, and it showed this tear in his shoulder. He worried because it had been almost a full year by the time, he got the diagnosis of a rotator cuff tear. We must eliminate all other causes, right? Because you don’t have a timely diagnosis. In Florida you just must prove more likely than not that the injury came from the wreck.

Joe Zarzaur, founder of Zarzaur Law, P.A., a Pensacola Personal Injury law firm, has created this video blog in an effort to educate the many citizens and visitors of Pensacola, Florida about their legal rights. Joe Zarzaur knows the ins and outs of Florida law, and offers quality legal help whether you have experienced an auto accident/car wreck, have been a victim of medical malpractice or are in need of a personal injury attorney.

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