If you are filing a personal injury claim, there is a chance that you have been injured enough to have to miss work. No one wants to miss out on wages, especially when faced with medical bills. Your recovery should be your main priority, but it is normal to be concerned about missed work and wages. Here is some important information you will need to know if you are seeking lost income damages in your personal injury claim.
What is covered under lost wages?
When looking at the compensation you could receive in your claim, lost wages can include several things. The money you lost while out of work, perks like a company phone, and even lost opportunities (like a new job you’ve been working towards) can all count. You and your personal injury attorney will need to decide which types of income you normally get and what you may be able to recover.
If you are paid hourly, this will be the first place to start for calculating lost wages. All you will need to do is count how many days of work you have missed, multiply that by your normal hours, and then multiply the result by your hourly rate.
Some car accident victims not only work full-time jobs, but they regularly earn overtime as well. If you are one of these employees, you can seek compensation for your lost overtime income. Even if you only get overtime pay for seasonal work, you may still be eligible to include this in your claim. Past pay stubs and timesheets can help prove your typical overtime pay.
Paid time off (PTO)
Many car accident victims will use their sick days and even vacation days (PTO) when recovering from their injuries. If you had not been injured by someone else’s negligence, you could have used those days for illnesses and vacations. Be sure to speak with your attorney about recovering this type of lost wage.
Proving that you lost out on bonuses may be slightly difficult. You will need to show past bonuses that you have received. If these are not regularly given to you, like a Christmas bonus, you can ask your employer for help. They can create a report that shows how other employees like you earn bonuses, what they can amount to, and other compensation you might not be able to get.
Perks and tips
Perks can be a part of lost wages. These include a company cell phone, car, or gym membership, for example. If you are no longer able to have these benefits, you may be able to ask for compensation for them in your claim. It should not be too difficult to recover compensation for lost tips if you keep a record of them and report them. Tax documentation and bank statements can show your average income from tips.
How to prove you have lost wages
Your personal injury attorney can help you figure out the best way to show proof of lost wages for your specific case. In general, information from your employer will be important. They can write a letter along with other documentation with your title, your start date, your usual work hours, and your rate of pay. Other information they can use includes:
- A statement that you were employed with them when the car wreck happened
- Your usual overtime hours and rate
- Any lost perks
- The structure of bonuses within the company and your level of employment
- The total days of work you missed
What does “lost earnings potential” mean?
Although it may seem the same, this term refers to your lost potential to earn future wages. Lost earning potential can include promotions, lost opportunities, and the ability to continue to work in the future. You will need professionals to help you figure out this portion of the damages in your claim.
Do you need a knowledgeable personal injury attorney?
If you would like to learn more about lost wages or need help with a personal injury claim, Attorney Dean Boyd and his team can help. You can reach us at (806) 242-3333 or Send Us an email to learn more about our Services.