Claim Lost Earnings From An Auto Accident in Colorado Springs or Las Vegas
Being involved in an auto accident can cause more than just physical harm. If you have been injured and you’re unable to work, you may be at risk of losing your income. This can really be a scary thought and is precisely why you need to start preparing to reclaim these losses against the other driver’s insurance company as soon as possible.
Something like this is not your fault, and you shouldn’t have to worry about paying your bills and your mortgage because of another’s actions. Many drivers carry personal injury protection or medical payments coverage as a part of their insurance, but this only covers the cost of medical bills up to the limits of that coverage. You may end up being unable to recoup your lost income, and this can cause a real sense of panic.
In the same way that you can make a personal injury claim for physical harm, medical expenses, and property damage, you have a right to claim lost income. Here is our advice about preparing for your insurance claim to recover these costs.
Lost wages vs. loss of earning capacity
When looking into your lost earnings’ claims, there are two distinct areas. These are your lost wages and your loss of earning capacity.
Lost wages – This is the income you have directly lost from needing to take time off work between the accident date until the date of your settlement/trial.
Loss of earning capacity – This is what you can reasonably assume to lose over the course of your career/lifetime as a result of the crash. For example, if you work in construction and have chronic back pain from a car crash, you may not be able to continue in your chosen career. The loss of earning capacity claim would be the amount you will potentially lose when switching to a new job.
Your lost wages is easier to work out. It can be calculated by looking at your monthly pay stubs or W2s and multiplied by the number of days, weeks and months you took off work. Loss of earning capacity is a lot more challenging to calculate and most likely require some detailed analysis and expert testimony to calculate your lost earning potential because of the auto accident or as a result of any other type of accident.
In addition to your actual lost wage calculation, you can claim against the other party’s insurance for additional types of lost earnings. These different types of income recovery available will be specific to your circumstances. These include (but are not limited to):
- Tips (as long as they are documented)
- Sales commission
- Bonuses or lost promotions
- Overtime pay
- Used vacation days, sick leave, and personal days
- Company benefits and allowances.
These may be a little more difficult to calculate. For example, tipping is a valid form of income but is not consistent and can fluctuate wildly. To claim for lost tips, you will need a letter from your employer explaining what you could expect from tips on the average week/month, and possibly backdated bank slips showing regular deposits around the same time each week/month. Claiming for lost tips requires more work and evidence than simply presenting W2 forms but absolutely needs to be considered when filing a personal injury claim.
Making a claim for overtime would require proof that your overtime was previously scheduled, or that there is a track record of consistently working overtime in the past. There must be a justification behind any overtime claim.
You are entitled to take vacation days, sick leave, or personal days at your discretion. Using up sick days after an accident could cause further problems down the line if you were to fall ill. If you are forced to take any paid time off for accident-related injuries and medical appointments, you can be compensated for this through your personal injury claim.
There are many different areas of a loss of earnings claim. If you are unsure of all of the different types of losses that you can add to your personal injury claim, speak with your personal injury attorney today to get a comprehensive understanding of what is available to you.
Kim Welch Law is a dedicated personal injury firm that is experienced in dealing with all manner of car and auto accidents. We provide excellent customer service to our clients where we put our clients first. You are our priority, and we will work like a bulldog to get you the compensation you deserve. Call us today at (888) 590-5510 or head to our contact form and book your free no-obligation consultation.
Evidence that can help your claim
As with each area of your claim, insurance companies will not simply take your word for it that you have lost your income from the accident. That is why you need to compile a list of evidence to support your claim. This could include:
- Pay stubs or W2 forms to demonstrate your regular monthly income
- A letter from your employer to detail what you are likely to receive in tips, commissions, or bonus income on an average month. Letters from your employer can also be used as evidence that you have not been able to attend work.
- Bank statements highlighting regular deposits of tips or other compensation
- Email and text message exchanges or other documentation between yourself and your employer detailing that you are taking time off work due to your accident injury
When you speak with your personal injury attorney about your claim, they will be able to give you a list of documents to pull together to support your entire claim. Your lost earnings documents will be a part of the comprehensive claim for damages.
What to do next if you can’t work because of an auto accident that wasn’t your fault
It can be challenging to develop a strategy and approach insurance companies on your own when it involves auto accidents and lost wages. That is why we highly recommend that you speak with an experienced and dedicated personal injury attorney before submitting your claim. Call Kim Welch Law today to get help with overcoming these obstacles. We offer a free no-obligation consultation to all clients, meaning that you have nothing to lose and everything to gain by getting in touch. Call us today at (888) 590-5510 or using the contact form on our website.
We understand that making a lost earnings claim can be overwhelming. We are here to help and ready for your call. Let’s have a chat to see how we can help with your claim.