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Can I recover lost wages after a car accident?

It is not uncommon at all to have to miss work for a few days, or even for an extended period of time, after an auto accident. If the accident was just minor, we may take a day or two off to allow our bodies to heal from any soreness or bruising. If the accident was major, we may require surgery, other treatments, or rehabilitation that can takes month to complete. All of these result in lost wages. So how can those be recouped?

The first step after an auto accident is to file an insurance claim with either the insurance company of the at-fault party, or with your own insurance company if they did not have coverage. You will be provided a claim number. Coverage for your lost wages will depend on what kind of coverage an active policy offered. Lost wages may be covered under liability, underinsured or uninsured motorist, or personal injury protection (only required in no-fault states).

A claimant will be required to submit documentation of lost wages. This can include one, or all, of the following: a letter from your employer, a letter from a physician, and/or a police report.

Sometimes, in order to reduce a policy deductible, insured parties will choose to exclude lost wage coverage from their policy. In these instances, a personal injury attorney can be of great assistance in communicating with an insurance company or at-fault party for you. If no settlement can be reached, then he or she can guide you into litigation in which you could be eligible for substantial compensation in addition to your lost wages.

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