What Happens If I Lose My Job Due to a Car Accident?
by Eric Chaffin | Last Updated: April 10, 2021
A serious car accident has many repercussions. If you lose your job due to this– it just compounds everything else—including the growing stack of medical bills coupled with no available income.
However, you can file a claim for lost wages, missed opportunities, and other economic losses, no matter the type of job you held or whether the position was part-time or fulltime. Because of these complexities, it is wise to retain legal counsel as soon as possible to help you.
A Pittsburgh Car Accident Lawyer from our firm can determine who is liable and assist you in filing the appropriate paperwork for your claim, or file a personal injury lawsuit against the responsible parties.
Insurance and lost wages
In Pennsylvania, motorists have the option to purchase lost wage coverage with their auto insurance policies. Such coverage is part of the Personal Injury Protection (PIP) element of the policy.
If you did buy this insurance, your lost wages are replaced up to the total amount by your insurer. Keep in mind the insurance does not cover the first five days you miss work, and only pays up to 80 percent of gross wages up to the policy limits.
When the other driver is at-fault
When the other driver was at-fault for the crash, you may have grounds to file a personal injury lawsuit to recover compensation. These lawsuits require filing within two years, or they cannot go forward in court.
Besides lost wages, damages in a car accident may include:
- Medical expenses, current, and future
- Property damage
- Pain and suffering
Your attorney knows a reasonable settlement amount for your injuries and inability to work. While most cases are settled, if the insurance company will not agree to a fair settlement, the case may go to trial.
Proving lost income
When you can no longer work due to your injuries, proving the amount of lost income is vital. In addition to this, you should also receive reimbursement for sick days or vacation days that you used while you were recuperating.
The same holds for any other benefits because you could not work. These might include commission, bonuses, missed opportunities, and any aspects of your compensation package also come into play.
Documentation is critical, so collect evidence of your lost income by obtaining a letter from your employer with your salary and benefit information, as well as the amount of time missed from work. If overtime opportunities were missed due to your injury, that information should also be provided.
You should also include the prior year’s tax return to show how much you made. If your work was more casual, you should submit pay stubs so that there is documentation of your average earnings.
Medical documentation is crucial
In addition, you must submit a note from your doctor outlining your injuries and why you were not able to work during this period. If the accident left you disabled permanently, and you can never return to that job again– the doctor must also include the nature of the impairment and how it limits your ability to work.
If you had coverage through your insurance provider, your attorney would help you receive reimbursement for the five days of non-coverage along with the 20 percent of gross wages that were not paid to you.
Contact us today
Our core value is “Doing Good by Doing Right,” so we will make sure your story is told, and your injuries are not minimized. If you or a family member lose a job after a motor vehicle accident caused by a negligent driver, you need the services of an experienced Pittsburgh Car Accident Lawyer. Call us 24/7 to arrange a free consultation or use our online contact form.
We will evaluate your claim and advise you on the best way to move forward. Our dedicated attorneys will keep you updated on the progress of your case.