If you are involved an auto, bicycle, or motorcycle accident in the San Fernando Valley, you might be able to recover financial compensation for your injuries. For example, your lawyer may seek “lost income” and/or “lost earning capacity” damages in presenting claims to the insurance company or at trial. These types of monetary awards aim to make you or an injured loved one “whole” after an accident.
“Lost Income” Financial Recovery for Injuries
Personal injury victims may seek lost income damages as compensation for wages and benefits lost due to injury. For instance, if you were unable to work for two weeks following a car accident, your San Fernando Valley auto accident lawyer might seek two weeks’ worth of wages, because you “lost income” during that week. For purposes of calculating the damages, you need not miss the days of work consecutively. Any income lost can be counted, whether it was one day here, and two days the following week, due to pain and/or doctor’s appointments that prevented you from working. Lost income damages can be fairly straightforward to prove, because these damages involve examining the person’s work attendance record and their pay stubs.
Another type of damages is lost earning capacity. If you are permanently injured, you may not be able to work in the future, especially if the job you perform cannot be completed due to your injury. For example, if part of your job involved lifting boxes, and you hurt your back in the auto accident, you probably cannot perform your job duties in the same way as before. Chronic pain and loss of stamina are also disabilities that may affect your ability to work. Even if you can still work, you may be able to recover by showing that the accident caused a disability that prevents you from having a higher paying job. A judge, jury, or your attorney may make a damages calculation for lost earning capacity based on a variety of factors.
These factors include:
- reviewing the injured person’s work background, skills, talents, and experience;
- using current market values and wage rates to determine how much income would have been lost;
- and/or hiring an expert medical witness to determine the extent of the injury and how it would affect future work performance.
Age will also be taken into account. If the injured person is thirty years old, for example, she has several working years left in her life, which will result in a higher damages award than someone close to retirement age. Other factors, such as geography and local wages, may affect this calculation as well. It can be very difficult to prove lost earning capacity, because it is impossible to predict the future. In order to ensure that you receive the financial recovery you deserve, make sure you hire an experienced personal injury attorney with a proven track record of success.
For more information on how to recover lost wages after being injured in an auto accident, contact San Fernando Valley auto accident attorney Barry P. Goldberg today.