It may be impossible for you to return to work due to the injuries suffered in a car crash. You might be out of work for weeks, months, or even years, depending on the extent of your injuries. In some instances, the injuries can permanently impede your ability to work.
Fortunately, lost wages are part of the damages you can recover in your car accident claim. Here is what you need to know.
Calculating lost wages is pretty straightforward in most cases. Simply put, it is the amount of money you would have earned if you were still working. Lost wages include your monthly earnings, overtime pay, tips, paid leave days, and other work benefits.
You may still be entitled to the wages lost if you could only work a lower-paying job than your previous one due to the injuries you suffered.
Long-term or permanent injuries are treated differently because it is impractical to base your earnings for, say, the next five or ten years, based on your current paycheck. Calculating lost wages over such a long period may involve financial experts who will ascertain your lost earning capacity. Factors such as your age, skills and career progression may determine the wages lost in such circumstances.
As with all other damages, you must prove the wages lost to claim them. Your most recent paychecks or tax returns will help establish the wages you have been earning in the months or weeks leading to the accident. Bank statements and a letter from your employer can help support your claim.
In addition, a doctor’s report with formal documentation of your injuries and how they affect your working ability is also vital to your claim.
If you were injured in a car crash and cannot work due to your injuries, it is best to have proper representation before getting started with the claims process. You will not settle for lowball offers if you know what you are entitled to and understand your legal rights if you are involved in a crash caused by a negligent driver.