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Self Employed? Here Is How You Can Prove Car Accident Lost Wages

Losing your job or missing work as a result of accident injuries is something that can be very heartbreaking. In the case of a car accident, awarding damages for loss of wages and income to injured victims is a common practice. Even if you are self-employed, the possibility that you may receive compensation for loss of business opportunities or income is very high, especially in situations where the other driver is at fault. Notwithstanding, the process for ascertaining damages is entirely different for self-employed workers, compared to regular employees. In this article, we are going to take you through the process on how to prove lost wages as an independent individual.   

Self-Employed vs. Employee

When it comes down to claiming lost wages, it is imperative to understand the differences between a self-employed person and an employee. Typically, you are regarded as a self-employed person if you are a sole proprietor, a freelancer, an independent contractor, who decides where and when to perform his/her work. But on the other hand, an employee is someone whose work is dictated by his/her employer.

 Lost Wages for Self-Employed: What are they?

Lost wages is a terminology often used interchangeably with other terms like lost compensation, lost benefits and lost income. All of these refer to the approximate amount of earnings you would otherwise have made if the accident had not occurred. Such earnings include future contracts, recent profits, lost goodwill and lost business opportunities. You have to remember that lost wages aren’t the same as lost earning capacity—another type of damage that deals with the loss of future earnings.  

Proving Lost Income and Wages

For a self-employed person, proving lost wages and loss of income is not like a walk in the park. It is more difficult for self-employed persons than it is for employees. To be able to receive any form of compensation, you must have proof of lost wages; otherwise, you won’t be entitled to any compensation. It is essential to show the insurance company or the law court documents and evidence supporting your claim.

Documents and Evidence

To prove a claim for lost income and wages, you must provide documents evidencing the facts so claimed. You can do this by:

  • Proof of lost opportunity and income: What you need to do here is to show the amount you would have earned beginning from the date the accident occurs to the time of full recovery. In that case, you might be asked to tender your correspondence, business invoice, your 1099 form(s), receipts (if applicable,) or your tax return from the previous year.
  • Medical papers: It is necessary to tender documents that will clarify your medical condition. Such materials can be in the form of a disability slip or a doctor’s note that contains a recommendation to stay off work for the time being.

How to Calculate the Amount of Lost Wages

The length of time you spent outside work should represent the seriousness of the injury sustained from the accident. If your independent profession or business has been steady, you can gauge your damages by calculating your tax returns from the past year. But, in a situation where your independent work or business involves growing additional benefits, profits, or any irregularities, you should consider hiring personal injury attorney or a forensic economist.

Get a Free Claim Evaluation

To put together a lost wage claim as a self-employed takes more than just calculating numbers and equations. For self-employed workers, car accident injuries are much more complicated than you could ever have imagined. Due to the difficulties in proving wages and the irregular work schedule of self-employed persons, filing and achieving a successful claim is even more tedious and difficult. But with The Injury Firm, you can get unlimited help and advice about proving lost wages. Get a free claim evaluation by contacting our Personal Injury Attorneys at The Injury Firm.   

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