If you were injured in an auto accident in Texas and you missed work as a result, you're likely frustrated and angry that you're now forced to miss work because of someone else's mistake. Do the bills fall on your shoulders? Will your insurance pay for them? And can a lawyer help? The good news is that you do have options.
Who Can Make a Lost Wage Claim?
If you were hurt in an accident that was someone else's fault (on the job or not), and you missed work as a result, you have a right in Texas to be compensated for missed work days and lost earning capacity.
Whose Insurance Pays for Lost Wages?
The first thing you'll need to do is look at whose fault the accident was. If, for instance, the other driver caused the accident, the claim will be made using their insurance company. At our firm, we mainly look at the at-fault driver's liability insurance to make sure they pay for what they should, which includes compensation for your medical bills, lost wages and pain and suffering.
If you have health insurance or personal injury protection (PIP), use it to help pay your medical bills. If you have PIP insurance on your car (or on the car you were in at the time of the accident), that insurance company should pay your 80 percent of the wages you lost from missing work due to injuries.
In summary, if you were hurt in an auto accident, it's best to use all forms of available insurance to ensure you're fully compensated for the days of work you missed.
How to Make a Lost Wages Claim (If You're Employed or Self-Employed)
Any claim for lost wages must be supported by documentation from your employer or, if you're self-employed, by your federal income tax returns.
You will need to provide proof that missing work was reasonable and supported by your medical records. If you were working in a warehouse and suffered a broken leg in an accident, it's pretty obvious that you were unable to work until you were out of your cast and back on your feet. But with other injuries, it might not be as obvious as to whether or not you're able to work. In those situations, you'll need support from your doctor.
Sometimes doctors don't record the fact that they told you to stay off work; instead they just give you an off-work slip. Make sure to keep all of those slips to prove that the work you missed was at the advice and direction of your doctor. Without a doctor's excuse, the insurance company might not think that the work you missed was justified, and therefore they might not pay you for it.
Can You Make a Lost Wages Claim If You're Unemployed?
No. To make a lost wages claim, you need to prove your wages.
If you're unemployed and an injury took away future earning capacity (like if the injury left you with a weak back that prevents you from doing manual labor), you CAN still recover money for that. This is different than lost wages - it falls under the category of future wages.
If you've been injured badly enough to warrant claiming for future earning capacity, you're case automatically becomes more serious in the eyes of the insurance company. In these cases, we strongly suggest you contact us here at the Anderson Law Firm. We offer free consultations.
Common Questions on Lost Wages
Question #1: Can I receive compensation if I'm self-employed?
Yes. You'll need to provide a history of your income to show the wages you've lost. This would include averaging your income per month to show that the months following your accident have significantly lower averages than those before the accident. Providing tax returns and financial statements can also be helpful.
Question #2: I get paid in direct deposit-monthly. How can I prove how much I earn?
You can request for human resources or your office manager to provide you with copy of a pay stub, or you may obtain one online if available.
Question #3: Can I receive compensation for benefits?
Yes. Vacation time or sick leave used to take time off work to handle accident-related tasks, such as treating injuries, is an example of this; you are using your job’s employee benefit of taking paid time off work to care for your health, which can be compensated for.
Question #4: I need to receive compensation for my lost wages, but the insurance company does not acknowledge the full amount of my wages. How can I proceed?
Basically, there are three things you need to prove your lost wages: proof that the doctor ordered you to take time off work, proof that you missed that time from work, and proof of what you are making.
Who Needs to Hire a Lost Wage Lawyer?
If you've never hired a lawyer before, you might be wondering, "What will an attorney do for me? Do I even need one?" You will benefit from hiring a lawyer if you:
- Were hurt in an accident caused by another driver
- You're missing work and losing wages because of the wreck
- Don't have health insurance after a wreck and can't afford to get treatment
- Have never handled a claim before and feel confused about what to do next
- Tried handling the claim on your own but encountered trouble with the insurance adjuster
- Received an unfair settlement offer from the insurance company
- Want a professional to ensure you win everything you deserve to cover the cost of your accident
If you were in an accident that wasn't your fault and suffered injuries as a result, you will benefit from having a personal injury attorney handling your case. The reason is simple. After a wreck, you're going to have to convince the other driver's insurance company to pay you the money you deserve for your medical bills, lost wages, damaged car, and pain and suffering. However, insurance adjusters are trained to pay you as little money as possible. It's how insurance companies make money.
Having a lawyer on your side evens the playing field. Here at the Anderson Law Firm, we have over 25 years of experience winning money for hurt accident victims in the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex. We know exactly how to set up your case, and we handle everything for you.
What Our Personal Injury Firm Can Do For You
When accident victims come to us, it's often out of frustration with the insurance company. No one ever tells you how hard making a claim can be, especially when insurance adjusters refuse to call you back or create unfair excuses to deny your claim.
We Fight the Insurance Company So You Don't Have To
Insurance adjusters might find it easy to brush you off, but they won't be able to ignore us. Sometimes simply having a lawyer on your side forces the insurance company to stop messing around - they know we won't let them get away with undervaluing your claim or playing around with your case.
We Prove the Other Driver Was At Fault
This is a sticking point for many car accident victims. You might know that the other driver caused your accident, but how can you prove it? We have over 40 years combined experience building cases and proving negligence. We know exactly what to look for, who to call and how to handle your case in the right way.
We Immediately Investigate Your Accident
If we're going to convince the insurance company to pay you full compensation, words alone are not enough - we'll need to prove that someone else caused your car accident, and that your car accident caused your injuries. For this reason, quick and thorough car accident investigations are crucial, which is why we make yours a priority. Since evidence like skid marks, debris, vehicle damage, video camera recordings and injuries tend to diminish and disappear fairly quickly, we understand the importance of fast action.
We Fight to Win You the Compensation You Deserve for Lost Wages and More
If you've been in a car accident that wasn't your fault, you shouldn't have to pay the price. Under Texas law, you're entitled to compensation for your medical bills, missed work days, pain and suffering. The Anderson Law Firm can help you get it.
How Does It Work?
Schedule Your Free Consultation
First, you'll schedule your free consultation with our firm. When you come to our office, we'll listen to your story and get all the facts of the case, then form a plan to get you the medical care you need. From there, we'll gather evidence to build your case against the other driver and start our battle to win you everything you deserve to cover the cost of the accident, including all the wages you've lost and lost earning capacity.
You Pay Zero Upfront Costs
If you choose to hire our firm, there are no costs upfront. Instead, we work on a contingency basis, meaning we take a percentage of the money we win for you once you're satisfied with the results and your case is complete.
We Set You Up with Doctors
Even if you don't have health insurance, you shouldn't be left to suffer. We work with a network of doctors we trust who can get you the care you need now, and defer payment until later (after we've won your case and the money needed to pay these bills).
We Handle Everything, Giving You Updates Along the Way
You'll be assigned a case manager who is there to answer questions every step of the way. As your case progresses, we'll keep you updated on its status and check in with you to see how you're healing, but we handle all the paperwork, evidence-gathering and negotiations. Your only job is to get better.
Once You're Healed, We Fight the Insurance Company
After you're fully recovered from the accident, we'll gather all your medical bills, photo documentation, police reports and other evidence and bring it to the insurance company to demand a fair settlement. Attorney Mark Anderson has over 25 years of experience negotiating with insurance adjusters, and he won't let an adjuster lowball us. If at the end of negotiations we still don't believe the insurance company is offering you fair compensation, we'll file a lawsuit.
Filing a Lawsuit
In addition to our attorneys, we have a full litigation team trained to bring your case to court. We've won millions of dollars for our clients over the years, and we are confidant in our ability to bring justice to hurt accident victims.
Why Trust the Anderson Law Firm?
The Anderson Law Firm's founder Mark Anderson is one of the most recognized attorneys in our area. Most notably, Mark was named a Top Attorney by Fort Worth Magazine, and recognized as a 2016 Super Lawyer by Thompson Reuters. He is rated A+ by the Better Business Bureau and is ranked in the top one percent of practicing attorneys in the United States, according to the National Association of Distinguished Counsel.