How To Prove Future Lost Wages in a Personal Injury Claim
Personal injury cases can sometimes be complex and complicated. For instance, if there’s an injury case in Sarasota Florida, there’d be an injury lawyer in Sarasota, Florida working hard to defend their client and bring compensation home. On the other hand, is a team of lawyers working against the claim for the insurance company. In the end, it all boils down to what can be proven and to what extent it is proven.
As with most injury claims, the claimant and their legal team are interested in getting the highest possible payout, while the insurance company is looking to pay as little as possible. This conflict of interest is enough reason for an injury victim to hire a competent and experienced attorney to handle their case. Experienced injury lawyers know what to look for and what to demand. One of such demands is future lost wages.
Future lost wages are common demands included in injury cases where the victim suffered catastrophic and life-altering injuries. In essence, this compensation aims to help the victim make sense of their future as they have been significantly robbed by their injuries. In calculating this compensation, an injury lawyer must consider all important factors. Some of the genuine factors that can be used in determining future earning power or lost income include;
- Medical reports
- Statement from the victim’s employer
- Testimony from an expert witness.
Using these documents above, your attorney may be able to prove how much you are likely to earn in the future and how your injuries may have affected those chances.
Calculating Damages in a Personal Injury Case
Most accident victims usually want to know how their accident attorneys arrive at the damages demanded from the defendant and their insurer. The idea is simple, injury lawyers consider several factors that would have been in place in the absence of the accident and injury.
Please note that some accident cases are so devastating and fatal that they may permanently affect the victim and their ability to live a normal life. In such cases, the accident victim may be unable to return to their jobs or continue in their career line. If this has happened to you, your injury lawyer may be able to help by calculating your losses and damages.
How injury lawyers calculate past damages
Calculating past damages is quite straightforward. Injury lawyers just consider the details of the accident and the costs incurred. The costs incurred may include medical costs, transportation bills, medication costs, and others. They may also consider lost income due to the accident, the cost of home modifications to make living easier, etc. In essence, past damages are the costs incurred due to the accident and injuries sustained.
The amount of money received in compensation for past damages will depend on the extent of the victim’s losses. Victims who suffered extensive economic and non-economic damages are likely to receive higher compensation, with all other factors being equal.
How injury lawyers calculate future damages
Future damages aren’t as easy to calculate as past damages. Past damages have a figure attached to them, that is, the cost spent on medical bills, the cost of prescription medicine, the cost of repairs, etc. On the other hand, future damages do not have a set monetary value and must be estimated. In estimating future damages, the lawyer must consider the many possibilities of the client’s case.
Proving future losses is made harder due to the lack of tangible evidence to support the costs. Attorneys can, however, leverage expert advice and tools.
Medical Experts and their Medical Knowledge
Attorneys can contact medical experts to discuss their clients’ injuries and the future possibilities of such injuries. For example, an accident victim who has suffered a Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) or spinal cord injury may permanently lose the function of their body parts. Medical experts with knowledge in such cases can determine the lifetime expected costs of such injuries by assessing the injury severity and the patient’s healthcare needs.
The overall future medical costs will be based on factors like;
- Future medications
- Medical devices needed to stabilize or improve the victim’s quality of life
- Physical therapy
- Surgical interventions
- In-home medical care services.
Proving Future Lost Income
In proving future lost income, an accident lawyer may consult with the victim’s healthcare provider to learn more about their condition. Medical experts can help lawyers to analyze how the injuries sustained from personal injury accidents affect the victim’s ability to return to work. Doctors can also estimate the possibility of the patient’s return to work and in what capacity they’ll be able to function after their injury.
Based on the estimation from the doctors, personal injury lawyers may be able to gauge the significant losses experienced by the victim and calculate their future income losses. Other vital information that may be essential to calculating lost income include;
- Victim’s income before the accident
- Victim’s age and life expectancy before the accident
- Victim’s fields or the industry they work in
- Victim’s entitlement to bonuses and other special pay packages
- Victim’s potential career progression, promotion opportunities, and prospects prior to the accident
- Victim’s expected work years
- It can be challenging to prove future lost income; however, an experienced personal injury lawyer can help.
What Is Included In Future Lost Wages?
When calculating your future lost wages, your personal injury lawyer will try their best to capture all of the benefits you may have been entitled to in the absence of the injury sustained. This means that future lost income may include;
- Sick leave and vacation time
- Commissions and bonuses
- Health insurance and other work benefits
- 401(k) matching
- Stock options (if applicable)
- And others.
What happens to the Unemployed?
If you sustained a life-changing injury due to another person’s negligence while unemployed, you might not recover any past or lost wages. However, your injury lawyer may demand compensation for the loss of future earning capacity. Your attorney will carefully assess your past work history and what you would have been capable of earning before the injury.
An experienced attorney is a major key to ensuring a better chance of getting the compensation you deserve. Speak to an experienced personal injury lawyer today or visit https://halelaw.com/sarasota-personal-injury-attorney/ for help.
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