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Recovering Lost Wages & Future Lost Wages From The At-Fault Driver After A PA Or NJ Car Accident

Drivers and passengers involved in PA or NJ car or truck accidents may be seriously injured.  Such injuries often include:

  • traumatic brain injuries,
  • orthopedic injuries (broken bones throughout the body), or
  • spinal cord injuries.

As a result, injured car or truck accident victims cannot perform their daily activities such as basic grooming, going to work, etc. Further, they often worry about their financial situations, especially if they cannot work for a period of time or an indefinite period of time.  Can lost wages be recovered from the driver who caused the accident?  What if the injured driver/passenger can no longer return to his job and has to work at another job with a lower pay? Can the difference in wages be recovered as well?  The answers to those questions will be discussed in this article.

Recovering Lost Wages

Injured drivers and passengers who cannot work for a period of time after auto accidents may recover lost wages from the drivers who caused the accidents by filing PA car accident lawsuits.  This is known as a lost wages claim.  For example, a roofer who breaks his ankle in a car accident cannot work for several months due to his limited mobility.  He has to get ankle surgery and probably cannot bear weight on his leg for a period of time after the surgery.  He will undergo physical therapy to build up strength to help him start using his ankle/leg again.  During his recovery, he cannot work because being a roofer requires him to climb up and down ladders to perform his work.  After 3 months, the roofer's ankle heals and he is able to return to work.  He will be able to recover his lost wages as part of his damages claim in the lawsuit against the at-fault driver.

Related: PA Car Accident & Insurance Law - Who Is Eligible To Receive PIP Or Medical Benefits?

Recovering Future Lost Wages

Using the above example, if the roofer breaks his leg in multiple places, he may not be able to regain the mobility and flexibility in his leg in order to perform his job.  Having multiple fractures in the leg often requires placing hardware in the leg, such as a metal plate and/or screws.  The hardware may permanently affect the roofer's ability to bend his knee.  He also may not be able to stay on his feet for a long time.  As a result, he cannot return to his job as a roofer.  Instead, he gets a desk job that pays 1/3 less than his salary as a roofer.  In this case, the injured roofer can recover his future lost wages, also known as his future earning capacity. 

How do you prove lost wages and future lost wages? Click here to continue to part 2 of the article.

Injured in a car accident? Call Daniel J. O'Brien, Esq., who has been helping injured car accident victims for over 2 decades, to schedule a FREE consultation.  877.944.8396


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