How to Calculate Lost Wages After a Car Accident in New York

Table of Contents

    Plaintiffs often incur more damages, injuries, and losses than they initially realize. An attorney can help you calculate all your damages, including lost wages and income, so you get the maximum compensation possible.

    Taking time away from work after being hurt in a car accident is normal. Unfortunately, many injured victims have to take significant time off work and lose income. An attorney can help you calculate how much income you lost and might continue to lose and add it to your overall damages. Important considerations include how much time you took off work, whether your career was negatively impacted, and whether you can ever work again. We can help you find evidence supporting our calculations, including records from your employer, pay stubs, and testimony from employers and coworkers. How we calculate lost income depends on how you are paid, such as salary, hourly, or freelance.

    If you lost substantial earnings because you could not return to work after an accident, call our New York car accident lawyers at (718) 841-0083 and set up a free case review with us at The Carrion Law Firm.

    Claiming Damages for Lost Earnings and Income After a Car Accident in New York

    When thinking about damages, many plaintiffs only consider the amount of money they have spent, not necessarily money they could have earned but did not. If you had to take time away from your job, or maybe even had to quit altogether, after an accident, the defendant should cover any income you lost as a result.

    Talk to your attorney about how long you were unable to work. If you only took off a few days, and your time away was covered by sick days or some other form of paid time off, you might be unable to claim lost wages. However, if you had to take an extended leave of absence or your employer did not cover your time off, you may claim any wages you missed out on.

    Even a few days of unpaid time away from work should be calculated and factored into your damages. For some, just a few days of lost wages might be enough to break the bank. It does not matter if your job does not pay very well. The fact that your lost income might not seem like a lot of money to the defendant does not mean it is not important.

    Important Factors to Consider When Calculating Lost Wages After a New York Car Accident

    One very important factor is how long you were unable to work. Generally, the longer you are out of work, the more income you lose, and the greater your damages calculations should be. However, depending on your financial situation, even a few days or weeks of missed work may be significant. Do not be afraid to claim even a single day of lost earnings.

    You should also consider whether your time away from work negatively impacts your career. Even if your job is waiting for you after a lengthy absence, your career trajectory might be damaged. For example, you might have been in line for a promotion before you were injured. However, because you were away so long, you were skipped over and did not get the promotion and pay raise. Not only can you claim the income you lost, but you can claim additional compensation for the loss of a pay raise you reasonably expected.

    If you cannot work at all, your damages for lost income may be even higher. You and your lawyer should account for the income you have lost thus far and the income you will continue to lose in the future. Your attorney can help you estimate how much money you reasonably would have earned over your lifetime if not for the car accident. In situations like this, damages for lost income are very high.

    Evidence of Lost Wages in Car Accident Cases in New York

    Like all other damages, we must support your claims for lost income with evidence. Depending on what you do for a living, there might be ample paperwork and documentation that could help us establish your income and how much money you lost. However, not everyone works a standard 9 to 5 job with an HR department to manage their paychecks. We might need to get creative with where we look for evidence.

    A good way to begin is to get pay stubs showing how much you get paid each pay period. If you do not have copies of pay stubs – many people prefer direct deposit where there is no paper stub – our Long Island car accident attorneys can get copies of your payment history from your employer. Your paystubs should be as recent as possible to reflect your income accurately.

    Your pay stubs might not sufficiently explain your income and wages. You might be paid on commission or in cash. We can go to your employer and ask for payroll documentation about you. The more records we have, the better.

    Things like promotions or pay raises you missed out on because of the accident might not be reflected in paperwork from your boss. As such, we can get employers and coworkers to testify about raises or promotions you were in line for before the car accident.

    Calculating Lost Wages for Different Types of Jobs in New York Car Accident Cases

    How you are paid for your work will influence how we calculate lost income and get evidence to support your claims. Calculating lost income may be a bit easier if you are paid by salary or an hourly wage. In such cases, we can multiply the time you are out of work by your standard weekly, monthly, or yearly income.

    The situation is a bit more complicated if you are an independent contractor or freelance worker. Such work is often sporadic, and different jobs might pay differently based on the work you do for each one. We can estimate how many contractors or freelance gigs you typically get and how much they are usually worth to at least get a ballpark estimate of your lost income.

    If You Cannot Work After an Accident, Call Our New York Car Accident Lawyers About Your Case

    Call our Queens car accident attorney at (718) 841-0083 and make an appointment for a free case review with us at The Carrion Law Firm to discuss lost earnings.