If you are in a car accident, you may lose time at work as you recover and may be on limited duty when you return to work. These circumstances can correlate with lost and lower wages. When you file a claim for damages, you can include an amount for lost wages. It is important to understand basic facts about how that works.
First, you’ll need to gather all documents that show how your medical condition was affected by the car accident that you were in. These documents will show why the car accident resulted in you needing to take time off from work or reduce the amount of work that you can do each day.
The documents should include a note from your doctor, or a disability slip, which communicates how much time off from work you need to recover from your injuries. You should also compile recent paystubs or checks to show how much you were earning before you were in the car accident. Additionally, you may need to make your W-2 or tax return available to the person reviewing your documents, so you should get copies of those too.
Once you have all of that paperwork together, you’ll want to calculate how much income you lost. If you make an hourly wage, you can simply multiply that wage by the number of hours you work per day and then multiply that by the number of days that you couldn’t work. If you make a yearly salary, you can divide it by 2080, which is the typical number of workdays each year, and then multiply the result by the actual number of work days you have to miss. Freelancers can submit their records of their past income.
If your injury limits the amount of work that you can do long term, you can include lost earning capacity in your claim. Your attorney can review the options for that and go over all of your documents with you.