After being in a car accident, you may recover damages from the at-fault driver. Previously, when we discussed the differences between compensatory and punitive damages, we explained how some calculations are more objective than others. For example, it is easier to quantify lost wages than to determine pain and suffering. Although a skilled personal injury attorney will assist you with both, there are scenarios when figuring out how much income you lost because of the accident will be challenging.
Proving Lost Wages When You are Self-Employed
Freelance workers such as writers and photographers are different from employees. If anything, they are independent contractors. Freelancers and independent contractors may not generate a steady income consistently throughout the year. If they are between assignments or contracts, how can they show how much you lost in earnings?
When we use the term “lost earnings,” it encompasses more than wages. It’s any money you could have made had you not been injured. Think of a roofer who runs their own business. In this example, the roofer is working on one house and is set to begin another in two months. On their way home from work, they are in an accident that was not their fault.
- How much did the accident impact their ability to finish their current job?
- Will their injuries prevent them from beginning the next job?
- Will their reputation be damaged if they cannot complete their current job?
- Did this injury hinder their future earning potential?
Determining “Lost Wages”
If you answered “yes” to any of those questions, the next logical step is learning how that would be proved. As in every personal injury case, your medical records will reflect the extent of your injuries. This is one of the reasons why it is essential to make and keep your appointments. Regarding income, independent contractors file 1099s. Your personal injury attorney can use these to demonstrate your earning potential for the previous year. If necessary, your attorney can contact subject matter experts to examine and testify about how the accident harmed your business and its growth potential.
Get Started By Contacting Beaty Legal, PLLC
The important takeaway is that if you are self-employed and have been injured, you can still get compensation for lost wages. To receive them, you need a competent and reliable personal injury attorney who can access the damages and argue on your behalf. Beaty Legal, PLLC will work to obtain a just and reasonable settlement. Contact our office today to schedule your free consultation.