Lost wages due to injury

Can an injured person be reimbursed for lost wages in an insurance settlement?

After someone is injured in an accident, they must not only deal with the aftermath of the injury itself, but often lose income from missed work. If the injuries are serious, this loss of income can be devastating. In a personal injury insurance claim, the injured person has the right to be reimbursed for any income lost while getting medical treatment and recovering from an injury.

How is lost income calculated?

When a personal injury attorney presents a claim to an insurance adjuster or to a judge and jury, the attorney must calculate the value of lost income to his client. The total income compensation includes more than just lost wages. It can include lost compensation related to lost vacation or sick days, pay bonuses, and other perks and benefits like use of a company car, free sports events, or any other perk you realistically would have enjoyed if not for your injury.

How do you give evidence of lost income?

Evidence of lost income can be provided in several ways:

  • A doctor’s report that details the injuries, treatments, diagnosis, and prognosis for recovery, and the estimated time you should be off work to heal.
  • A letter from the employer giving legitimate proof of the income and compensation lost during treatment and recovery.
  • For self-employed people, who face additional challenges in giving evidence of lost income, hiring a forensic accountant may be necessary to document past income and forecast future income.

 It is important for an injured person to receive full compensation for the damages they have suffered due to the negligence of another person. An experienced personal injury lawyer will carefully calculate the value of lost income to ensure a full settlement or verdict for an injured client.    



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Everett-Bellingham WA

Lost wages? PIP to the rescue

PIP stands for Personal Injury Protection and is automatically included with many auto insurance policies. Though individual policies vary, it may include $10,000 towards wage loss. But there are some important things to know about PIP and what it means to put it into action. Bill Coats Law in Bellingham, WA put together this article and video to help consumers understand auto insurance policies and what next steps to take in the unfortunate event of a car accident. 

Everett-Bellingham WA

The most important thing you'll need to prove wage loss for your accident claim

If an accident victim's injuries are serious, it will be impossible to go back to work for awhile. Many people in this situation need to file an insurance claim to cover wage loss, and have many questions about this process. Click here for information on what you need to do to show lost wages for your accident injury claim.

Everett-Bellingham WA

Will your lost wages be covered if the at-fault driver carries no insurance? Most likely, yes!

States like Washington require insurance companies to include uninsured/underinsured motorist protection to all policy holders unless they specifically opt-out of this coverage. This might come in handy if you've been hit in a car accident by someone who has no insurance or not enough, and you've had to take time off work - or can never work again. Click to learn more about your options for covering wage loss if the driver who hit you has no insurance.

Everett-Bellingham WA

Lost wages is one thing, but what if an accident victim can no longer keep up with household chores?

It's easy to take health for granted, but if you are the victim of a car crash, suddenly a lot of things in life that were easy to do are harder - or impossible - to manage. Everyone automatically wonders about if they'll be able to work at the same job enjoyed before the accident - but what about other tasks? Attorney Bill Coats in Bellingham, Washington, talks about a rather obscure-sounding part of personal injury law where you can get money for yard work and other chores. Click here to learn about substitute domestic services in personal injury claims.

Everett-Bellingham WA

If your auto accident left you paralyzed, you may be entitled to compensation for future wage loss

Paralysis is a devastating consequence from an auto accident, one of the worst imaginable. Life will be different forever after, and many victims may have to leave a job and be re-trained for another kind that accommodate such a disability, though that may mean less pay. If so, there is a way to be compensated for that wage gap, and it's known as "future wage loss" in personal injury lawyer terms. Click to learn more about what to do if you're facing future wage loss due to paralysis

Everett-Bellingham WA

Being ejected from a vehicle in a crash may change your working life forever after

If you've been in a collision where you were ejected from the vehicle, it's very likely that you're dealing with some severe injuries. Sometimes those injuries prevent accident victims from going back to the same job they used to have. This doesn't mean you are fated to settle for a lower paying job for the rest of your working life. Click here for an article and video about wage loss, future wage loss, and your options.

Everett-Bellingham WA

Neck surgeries needed after a bike accident can mean expensive medical bills

Attorney Bill Coats’ took on a personal injury case in Bellingham, Washington, that involved multiple defendants. He obtained a settlement of over $1M for his client who experienced spinal injuries after a bike crash because of some high school kids' prank that went horribly wrong. So often, an injury to the neck or spine can mean complicated surgeries as well as a high incidence of chronic pain. While this particular case's story is unique and doesn't guarantee the same results for your case, it can help to get a glimpse of how the legal process works in personal injury claims with spinal and neck damage.


Mr. Davis, a 31-year-old respitory therapist, was riding his motorcycle in Phoenix, Arizona when a vehicle, driven by Mr. Ballecer, drove into his lane, resulting in an accident. Davis stated that he thought that the vehicle was parking on the side of the road when Ballecer suddenly turned left into his lane of traffic, resulting in the accident. Davis suffered severe injuries in the crash, including a closed head injuring resulting in a seizure disorder, a jaw fracture, a fractured orbital bone around the right eye, and a torn pectoral muscle.

  Juan Salas Fonseca, a 28-year-old route salesman, was operating a Mitsubishi F-100 cab-over-engine commercial truck when he was involved in an accident. In the course of the collision, he was thrown from the detached cab through the windshield and was run over by his own truck. He suffered extensive injuries, including multiple fractures to his pelvis, spine, and leg. He faced future surgies to replace his hip and his spine and was therefore limited to semi-sedentary work.
  On January 26, 1993, John Randolph was riding his motorcycle west on the Pacific Coast Highway in the right lane. Fahad Abdullah Maghrabi, an employee of Saudi Arabian Airlines, was stopped on Corral Canyon waiting to turn onto the highway to drive east. According to a police report, Maghrabi, who was driving a rental car from Budget Rent-A-Car, did not see Randolph coming and proceeded into the highway, causing a collision between Randolph's motorcycle and his car. The police report stated that Maghrabi was at fault due to his failure to yield to oncoming traffic.
  On January 24, 2006, 46-year-old ironworker James Jaworowski was riding his motorcycle on Bosworth Street in San Francisco, California when he was struck by a Mitchell Engineering truck driven by Finbar James Brody. As Jaworowski was riding his motorcycle in the right lane, Brody changed intersections, resulting in the collision between the vehicles. In the accident, Jawarowski suffered several ligament tears, requiring him to undergo physical therapy resulting in one year of missed work. He claimed to have ongoing pain following the accident.
On September 23, 2005, Shannon Nielson, a 38-year-old hairstylist, was riding on the back of a motorcycle that her fiance, Troy McDaniel, was driving on the Mt. Rose Highway in the Sierra Nevada range of California. As they were riding on the highway, they came across a flatbed truck operated by Carl McAlister, an employee of the White Cap Construction Supply company. McDaniel grounded the motorcycle to avoid striking the truck, which was making a U-turn on the two-lane highway. The couple skidded on the pavement towards the truck and were run over by its rear wheels.
  On July 13, 2006, Michael Hull, a 56-year-old general contractor, was stopped on his motorcycle at an intersection in Salinas, California, when he was involved in a collision with an SUV driven by Maria Ramirez and a tractor-trailer owned by Carolina Cargo, Inc. of Rock Hill, South Carolina. Hull suffered torn rotator cuffs in both of his shoulders, requiring two surgeries to repar. He claimed that his injuries left him permanently unable to raise his dominant right arm above his shoulder, and that because of this, he will be unable to return to his job as a contractor.