Prove Lost Wages in Personal Injury Case
If you are injured in an accident, you would probably be wondering what your options are.
If the accident was no fault of your own, you can pursue personal injury damages. However, it can get tricky for some people to prove their lost wages. Lost Wages is a term that refers to the amount of money you are entitled to receive for wages you have lost because of an injury. It can be challenging for some people to gather the evidence required. The evidence you collect after an accident needs to show that you were not at work because of the injury caused by the accident.
It may cause some stress because it’s not always easy to remember what you have already submitted or if you sent the information at all. Sometimes there are repetitive records of the same information, which can be confusing. As if dealing with insurance adjusters, medical bills, and missing time from work isn’t already bad enough!
Ways to prove Lost Wages in a Personal Injury Case
For Employed People
The focus should be to provide documentation that shows the injured person was employed at the time of the accident along with the injury and the amount of income lost because of the accident. It is not enough to show that you were employed. You must also prove how much money you made, which will show the loss caused by your injury.
W-2 from the last Tax Year(s)
Recovering your lost wages, whether past or future wages, can impact your perceived long-term earnings potential and the value of your claim. The best way to prove this is by obtaining a copy of your W-2 from the last tax year(s). This form will confirm how much you earned during a given period at a given job.
In addition, you can tell by comparing W-2’s from different jobs that you were not able to work for a particular period or that you had to take a loss of income by working fewer hours due to an injury.
Wage Verification from Employer
You ask your employer for a wage verification form or a letter confirming wages. The wage verification form includes details such as hours worked, dates worked, and hourly wage information. Employers use this form to verify how much an employee earned during a specific period.
It is best if you provide your employer with written authorization from your attorney requesting the information you need. Employers are required by law to keep these records, so this evidence will be relatively easy to obtain.
Keep Track of Your Time Card
Many people who are not self-employed have a time card that they are required to turn in after each shift.
If you are employed, ask for a copy of your time card for the days that you missed due to your injuries. This is one way that your employer can prove the time that you missed and the pay rate for those hours.
Check Pay Stubs
Another option is to use pay stubs. Employers may not give out time cards, but they must give out pay stubs showing how much an employee made on any given day or week. You can use these stubs as proof of the money you made and the number of hours that you worked each day or week. They may also include information regarding overtime hours that you worked.
If you are currently employed, provide copies of your last two pay stubs. If you are currently unemployed, provide copies of pay stubs from your previous employment.
If you are self-employed, one of the most essential ways to prove lost wages in a personal injury case is to show your tax returns from the year of the accident. Self-employed people file tax returns as “self-employed”, and those tax returns will have the income from that period. It will be obvious how much you made for that specific time.
If you have business records showing how much you made at events or similar things, you can use them to show lost wages. However, one must keep these records for at least three years, so if you cannot get them now, it may not be possible later.
It will likely reflect in your bank account if you earned less because of the injuries caused due to the accident. If not, then you will likely see a change in your spending graph due to the injuries. For example, if you had to go on therapies, there would be evidence of money spent out for therapies and medicine. It is better to keep bank statements in a file for later verification.
Contact The Law Offices of Wolf & Pravato
Finding it challenging to handle lawsuits, need assistance for your personal injury case? Fort Lauderdale Personal Injury Lawyers at Wolf and Pravato are proficient at it. Connect with us today and our dedicated professionals will be happy to help!