If you’ve been in a car accident in Georgia, one of the first steps you should take is calling a car accident lawyer. You’re likely dealing with hefty medical bills and other expenses from the accident. If the car accident was not your fault, you’re entitled to financial recovery for your costs—including work wages lost from having to miss days of work. And a car accident lawyer can help you pursue that recovery.
Personal injury lawyers who deal with car accidents specialize in helping accident victims get the money they need to both reimburse what they’ve already paid and cover future or ongoing costs related to the accident. Victims are already stressed about how to pay for the damages from the accident. They shouldn’t have to worry about how to make up for missing work time too. If you were in a car accident, this article will cover the claims process for lost wages when working with an experienced Georgia attorney.
How Do Loss of Wages Claims Work in Georgia?
Chances are, you had to miss work for the accident and during recovery for your injuries. “Lost wages” refer to the amount of money you would have earned if the other driver hadn’t caused your car accident. There are a number of reasons you might need to miss work after a car accident, including:
- Injuries that prevent you from working or performing all your job duties
- Needing to stay home and rest in order to heal
- Having work restrictions from a doctor
- Medical appointments or procedures, such as surgery, during normal work time
Lost wages are just one of many losses a car accident victim can claim for financial recovery. After the car accident occurs, the at-fault driver’s insurance company is responsible for covering all costs related to the accident—and that includes missed income.
When you hire a car accident lawyer, they will help calculate your loss of wages before submitting an insurance claim. To do this, you’ll need certain documentation to prove your claim. Insurance companies will, unfortunately, look for any reason to deny your claim or pay out less than you deserve, so the more evidence and documentation you can provide, the better.
Here’s what you’ll need to provide for a loss of wages claim:
If you receive work restrictions from your doctor, make sure he or she can provide you with paperwork for your employer. Your doctor will need to understand what you do at your job, especially the types of tasks you need to perform each day. If your doctor says he or she thinks you’re okay to go back to work but you disagree, let them know why you know you aren’t well enough to work.
Pay Stubs and Tax Records
Keep track of any recent check stubs or other evidence of your pay after the accident. You’ll be able to show your regular pay rate and any days that were missed or shortened because of the accident. If you can, also set aside pay stubs from before the accident to show the difference.
If you missed a long period of work during your recovery, tax returns and W-2s can also help show your lost wages.
Record of Days You Missed
Keep a detailed log of every day or hour you missed from work and why you missed it. Even if it was just a few hours you had to miss going to a doctor’s appointment, keep track of it.
Lost Wage Verification Form
Your employer, a supervisor, or someone in human resources will need to complete this form. It shows the amount of time you missed from work as well as your rate of pay. Ask your employer about this form.
Your car accident lawyer will use this documentation to help prove the time you missed from work and that you missed it because of the accident.
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What if I Was Paid But Had to Use Vacation Days Because of the Accident?
Sometimes, you can even claim lost wages if your employer was paying you during your time away from work. For example; maybe you were still paid for the missed days but had to use vacation days, sick days, or were receiving disability payments. These are still losses that you wouldn’t have had to use without the accident happening. Ask your lawyer about accounting for these losses on your claim.
Is It Necessary to Have a Lawyer for a Loss of Wages Claim?
It’s strongly recommended. An experienced personal injury lawyer who works on car accident cases will know the best way to compile evidence and present it to the other driver’s insurance company. They can also help you with your entire insurance claim, including medical costs, repair costs, and other damages that are harder to calculate.
These are details that only a car accident attorney can fully handle when working to get you the best financial recovery possible.
Talk to a Car Accident Lawyer for Free Today
At John Foy & Associates, we routinely handle loss of wages claims for car accident victims. Our goal is simple: we want to get you the absolute best recovery possible so you can cover your costs and move on from the accident. For a FREE consultation, contact us today! Call 404-400-4000, or fill out the form to the right for your free consultation.