If you can successfully prove that you were injured in an accident that was due to no fault of yours, the court will award you compensation for loss of earnings for several different factors. These may be grouped into two categories:
- General damages, which include pain, trauma and loss of quality of life.
- Special damages, which include all out of pocket expenses that are directly related to the accident.
You can read more about the differences of general damages and special damages here.
If the physical injuries and mental trauma caused by the accident are so severe that you are unable to return to work, the court may compensate you for lost earnings along with other damages.
There are of course several factors that govern this clause.
Claiming For Future Loss Of Earnings
If the injury is so severe that your ability to return to work remains uncertain by the time the case comes to trial, then you may be able to pursue a claim for future loss of earnings.
If you were able to go back to work after a period of recuperation but your injuries deteriorated after returning to work and you had to give up your job or take on a position at a lower pay, you may still be able to claim for future loss of earnings.
You cannot claim for loss of pay if you are capable of going back to work after the accident but choose not to do so. In that case, your claim will be dismissed as the court tries their best to be fair to both parties. If you choose not to go back to your place of work for reasons other than your injuries, the other party should not have to pay you for that.
Claiming For Loss Of Overtime Wages
If you were working overtime regularly and were getting paid overtime wages, this is also taken into consideration when calculating how much to compensate you for loss of income. In order to avail of this, you will need to demonstrate that the opportunity to work overtime would normally have been available to you during the time that you were forced to stay home from work.
Getting Compensated For Loss Of Pension
If your injuries forced you to stay away from work for an extended period of time and this long period of absence jeopardised the pension that was due to you, you have a right to be reimbursed for loss of pension.
Claiming For Sick And Holiday Days
If you had not taken any sick or holiday days and they were used up while recovering from your injuries, you have a right to claim compensation for the value of every sick or holiday day lost because of the injuries.
You have worked hard the whole year round to earn these days off and should not have to lose them because of somebody else’s fault. Every sick day and holiday day that you’ve earned is counted as a day’s salary. This also goes for all national holidays and other bonus days off from work where every bonus day off represents a day’s income.
Getting Compensated For Lost Perks And Benefits
In many companies, employees get performance paid bonuses or non-monetary bonuses for getting the highest sales for a specific period or meeting some other goals. If you can demonstrate that you were working towards earning a monetary or non-monetary bonus and that your injuries prevented you from meeting the set benchmark, you may be able to claim damages for that amount.
Claiming For Loss Of Income If You Are Self-employed
Self-employed individuals are also entitled to reimbursement for loss of income. The only difference lies in the way that it is calculated. To prove their earning potential and how much income they lost because of the injuries, self-employed individuals will have to submit records of invoices and proof of the projects they were assigned to work on but had to forego because of the injury.
Some Points To Keep In Mind When Claiming Loss Of Earnings
- You will first have to prove that your injuries were caused in an accident that due to no fault of yours.
- You also have to provide evidence that the physical injuries or mental trauma resulting from the accident were so severe that they made it impossible for you to go back to work. Your doctor’s report, X-Rays and other tests done after the accident can help to support this claim. To claim for mental trauma you may need to furnish a psychiatrist’s report.
- In order to calculate the exact loss of earnings, you will need to submit your pay slips for at least six months preceding the accident. This will act as irrefutable proof as to how much you were earning before the accident took place.
How A Personal Injury Solicitor Helps In Claiming Loss Of Earnings
There are several advantages to hiring an experienced personal injury solicitor when you are claiming reimbursement for lost earnings.
For one thing they will know exactly what you can claim for so there is no likelihood that you will miss out on any reimbursements. With a solicitor in your corner, you can be sure that every bonus, perk, sick day, holiday day and overtime will be taken into consideration when filing the claim.
Secondly, having somebody else working on your behalf will give you time to recover from your injuries instead of stressing over them. The sooner you recover from your injuries, the sooner you can resume your regular activities and the sooner you can get back to work too.
Thirdly, in most instances you will not have to pay any upfront fees to benefit from the solicitor ’s experience if you are ready to sign a No Win No Fee agreement. According to the terms of this agreement, you do not have to pay any legal fees upfront or at any time during the proceedings. The solicitor ’s fees are only to be paid if your claim is successful and the court awards you damages for your injury. Both you and our solicitor will agree on the amount to be paid at the time of signing the No Win No Fee agreement.
Updated 28th February 2018.