What Happens When Accidental Injuries Make You Lose Income?
If you have suffered any kind of accidental injuries, you know it’s not just about your physical pain. For example, you could be concerned about property damage to your vehicle. More than likely, one of your major worries will be about the prospect of losing income. And, not just not now. Obviously, you might be anxious about your future earning as well.
It’s a sad reality. A number of Americans are just making it on paycheck to paycheck. In fact, one news source estimates that at least half of working families do not have emergency funds put in reserve. Of course, it’s bad enough to be concerned about temporary wage loss. There’s also the issue of whether your injuries will mean a diminished earnings capacity.
Loss of Earnings: Temporary Disability
First and foremost, if your accidental injuries cause you to stay out work, you will have concerns about replacing lost wages. You should know that the nature of your accident may dictate the source of your temporary disability benefits.
Work Related Accidents
For example, were you hurt in the course of your employment? In some cases, this does not necessarily mean you were injured in an office, warehouse or factory. There is the chance that a car crash is deemed a work-related accident.
An experienced workers’ compensation attorney can review the circumstances of your accident and make contact with your employer and their insurance company. There is a specified formula for temporary disability benefits payable under the New Jersey workers’ compensation laws. Your lawyer will work to ensure you are receiving the correct benefits.
Motor Vehicle Accidents
As noted, some motor vehicle accidents are work-related and injury victims will receive benefits from their employer’s workers’ compensation carrier. However, if you are injured in an automobile accident,you may be entitled to temporary disability benefits from your personal auto carrier.
According to the State of New Jersey, you may be afforded benefits under the Personal Injury Protection (PIP) portion of your automobile insurance coverage. Once again, your attorney can help determine your eligibility.
State Temporary Disability Benefits
With the exception of undisputed work-related accidental injuries, most employees are able to collect temporary disability benefits from the state. You can fill in the form online to ensure prompter service.
If you participate in a private disability plan, you may also be able to obtain reimbursement for lost wages as part of that coverage.
Income Loss Claim/Future Earnings
Without question, it is entirely possible to feel that you have not been made whole as far as wage reimbursement. If your claim is limited to what is available under workers’ compensation laws, there is nothing more than you can do. However, you should rely on legal counsel to provide you this advice.
An experienced personal injury attorney can help determine the extent of your wage loss claim as it pertains to the following:
- Self-employed earnings loss
- Diminished capacity to returning to the same type of job
- Reimbursement for vacation time used in place of sick time
In some cases, calculation of your lost wages or diminished earning capacity may require expert retention. Your attorney will determine if it is necessary to have you meet with a vocational expert. Additionally, it may be prudent to retain the services of an economist to prepare a report on your behalf.