A car accident can interrupt your life in many ways, leading to both financial and nonfinancial losses. One of the most common types of losses associated with car accidents in Texas is lost wages. Lost wages can refer to both the income lost while you are undergoing medical treatments as well as any future lost capacity to earn due to a long-term disability.
How to Seek Lost Income in a Car Accident Case
The first phase of a car accident lawsuit in Texas is filing an insurance claim with the carrier of the at-party. The driver at fault for causing your car accident will be financially responsible for losses since Texas is a fault-based state.
When you file an insurance claim with the at-fault driver’s provider, you will list all of the financial losses you suffered in the car accident. You also have the right to seek financial compensation for noneconomic losses, such as pain and suffering.
Before you can receive insurance benefits for these losses, however, you will have to prove that a) the defendant caused your car accident through an act of negligence and b) the car accident gave you compensable damages. A car accident lawyer can help you with this burden of proof.
Collect Proof of Your Lost Wages
To receive financial compensation for lost wages, you must present evidence of this type of loss. An insurance company, judge or jury will need to see enough evidence that proves you suffered a loss in income, and that this loss was directly connected to the auto accident. Common types of evidence used to prove lost wages are:
Most recent pay stubs before the injury
Payslips for special projects
Proof of tips or commission
Letter from your employer
Proof of employment benefits
Tax return documents or W2s from previous years
Medical records proving the longevity of your injury
Letter from a physician proving you cannot return to work
Testimony from an economic expert
A car accident attorney in San Antonio can help you gather evidence of your lost wages connected to the car accident. An attorney will take over negotiations with an insurance company on your behalf to prevent the carrier from taking advantage of you or offering less than your losses are worth. An attorney will also help you project the value of your future lost capacity to earn if you suffered an incapacitating injury.
Calculate Lost Future Capacity to Earn
With a long-term or permanent disability, you could be eligible for lost future capacity to earn in a car accident case. This is an amount of compensation that represents what you reasonably would have earned from your job in the future had the accident not occurred.
If the accident gave you an injury that will temporarily or permanently take you out of work, a lawyer can help you calculate this type of economic loss based on what you used to earn, what you can earn now (if anything) and how long you will foreseeably have your incapacitating injury.
How Much Is Your Claim Worth?
The value of your claim will depend on several factors unique to your case, including your average income pre-injury and the severity of the auto accident. An attorney can guide you through the steps necessary to accurately calculate your lost income, including the correct calculation method depending on whether you earn an hourly wage or salary.
The best way to accurately estimate the value of your case is by consulting with an attorney. An attorney will work hard to maximize the financial relief you receive from a car insurance claim or injury lawsuit, including an amount in lost wages. Hiring an attorney can be critical if a car accident in San Antonio took you out of work for any amount of time.