This guide shall focus on how you can go about claiming compensation for loss of earnings after a car accident. If you are injured in a road traffic accident because another road user neglected their duty of care then you may be thinking of making a personal injury claim. If your car accident personal injury claim is successful as part of the special damages head of your claim you could ask for any loss of earnings to be reimbursed.
In order to have a valid personal injury claim, you not only need to prove the accident wasn’t your fault but that your subsequent injuries were caused by the fault of the third party. Proving an accident was caused by a third party who owed you a duty of care would require providing evidence. This is something we will discuss as we go through the guide.
If you’ve been in a car accident and are thinking of making a claim, call our advisors today for free legal advice. They may even connect you to No Win No Fee solicitors who could help you in making a claim.
How to get in touch:
For information about how to claim loss of earnings after a car accident please read through the sections.
Select A Section
- Claim Loss Of Earnings After A Car Accident
- Claim For Loss Of Other Pay And Benefits
- How Do You Claim For Future Loss Of Earnings?
- How To Claim Loss Of Earnings As A Non-Employee
- What Evidence Do I Need To Prove Loss Of Earnings?
- How Much Will I Get From My Car Accident Settlement?
- No Win No Fee Claims
- Road Traffic Accident Resources
When making a personal injury claim, you can claim for general and special damages. General damages look to compensate you for the pain and suffering that your injuries have caused you. Special damages cover financial loss, such as those of loss of wages.
In order to make a personal injury claim, evidence is often needed to prove that those you hold responsible for your injury caused it because they breached their duty of care. In lots of areas of life, we are owed a duty of care including on the roads, in public and while at work.
Here are different types of evidence you could provide:
- Photographs of the situation and injury
- CCTV footage
- A report in the accident book
- Witness contact details (for statements to be gathered at a later date)
- Medical records
Medical records are especially important. Your solicitor will organise a medical assessment if they take on your claim. Still, it is imperative to have any injuries after an accident checked out this not only allows you to get the treatment you need but provides a detailed breakdown of the injury sustained.
To claim for special damages, you would have to be able to prove why you were claiming for loss of earnings. You could use payslips to prove how much you usually earn.
If you’re suffering from whiplash, a common injury associated with car accidents, it may be helpful to know about the Whiplash Reform Program. Recent changes mean that there is now a ban on settling whiplash claims without an independent medical assessment.
The changes also mean that you can now settle low-injury claims (those injuries valued under £5000) using an online portal. However, we would always recommend getting in touch with us first, as you could be undervaluing your injury.
Having to stay off work because of an injury could mean you lose out on more than just your wages. You could lose out on:
- Pension contributions – if you’re not getting paid, that means you won’t be contributing to your pension, nor will your employer. You can also claim if you are forced to retire early due to your injuries.
- Sick days – perhaps you’ve been forced to use up all your sick days in one go, meaning you won’t have any left if you’re forced away from work again.
- Holiday days – it could be that in your workplace, holiday days accrue after hours worked. If you’re unable to work these hours, you could miss out on taking your annual leave.
- Overtime wages – if you work in an industry where working overtime is a large part of your earnings, losing out on this could affect your earnings.
This list is not exhaustive, though. You could lose out on other perks. When considering special damages, your car accident lawyer will assess your situation accordingly. Ring our advisors today for more information on this.
When calculating special damages claims, your solicitor could look into any earnings you may be at risk of losing in the future. For example, if you’ve been in a car accident and been off work for two months, you would have lost earnings from those past months. But if your doctor has told you to continue to stay off work for another three months, your solicitor could take this future loss of earnings into account when assessing your case.
To calculate future losses, your solicitor will first have to look at your usual annual income to see how much you could be at risk of losing. This will likely mean collecting evidence such as past payslips.
Future lost earnings may take into account any number of things:
- Possible future promotions
- Possible pay rises
A non-employee can include self-employed workers, agency workers, contractors and any other type of worker who would not be classed as an official employee. Those who are self-employed may worry about how they would prove their loss of earnings when making a personal injury claim.
Different evidence can be used here such as financial account books from the past 3 months, forecasted jobs as well as contracts for the future. Although, generally, it is a little more difficult to work out loss of earnings when self-employed with the right evidence it is more than manageable.
To prove loss of earnings, payslips from your current employer and bank statements can be key. By looking at your regular income, your solicitor can figure out how much you’ve already lost and how much you could lose if you continue to have to take time away from work due to your injury.
To calculate any future loss of earnings, your solicitor will use payslips for three months (or more) leading up to your accident. They will then take an overall average from this.
If you make a successful personal injury claim after a car accident you would be awarded both general and special damages. Below in the table, we have taken figures courtesy of the Judicial College. They provide a document which legal professionals use to value various injuries. It is important to note that you may not be awarded the exact amounts shown here, as each case is assessed differently according to the circumstances. For more information, get in touch with our advisors today. The figures in the table only relate to general damages.
|Neck||Severe||£18,020 to £45,070||Significant disability that has resulted from serious damage to the brachial plexus.|
|Back||Moderate (i)||£26,050 to £36,390||Compression fractures of the lumbar vertebrae and prolapsed intervertebral disc requiring surgery.|
|Shoulder||Serious||£11,980 to £18,020||This involves cases where damage may have led to dislocation. Could cause pain in shoulder, neck, elbow and hand with a possible weakness of grip and restricted shoulder movement.|
|Shoulder||Moderate||£7,410 to £11,980||This involves cases where the shoulder has a limitation on movement, with symptoms persisting for about two years.|
|Leg||Moderate (iv)||£26,050 to £36,790||This involves cases where there may be multiple fractures. Award will be influenced by impact on employment, chances of future surgery or instability of the knee, among other factors.|
You may claim special damages as well, which would cover loss of past and future earnings. It could also cover:
- Travel costs
- Home adaptations
Special damages compensation will need you to prove that you have had to pay out of pocket. We have already looked at the evidence you could collate for loss of income, but you could provide different forms of evidence for other costs. For example, you could show receipts for any travel you may have had to do to and from the hospital. Or you could show invoices for any adjustments made to your home, such as installing a shower room.
No Win No Fee Claims
We hope this guide has shown you how to claim loss of earnings after a car accident.
If you are worried about paying solicitors fees upfront why not hire a solicitor on a No Win No Fee basis. No Win No Fee means that if your claim is not successful, your solicitor will not ask you for any payment for their work. However, if your claim is successful, your solicitor will take a legally capped, pre-discussed fee from your compensation amount, but only once it is paid in full.
If you’ve judged by our car accident compensation table that you could claim loss of earnings, get in touch today.
Thank you for reading our guide on how to claim loss of earnings after a car accident. We hope you found it helpful. See below for more relevant links.
Public Road Accident Claims Guide – A comprehensive guide on how to claim after an accident on a public road.
Compensation Payout Guide for Leg Fracture with Special Damages – A comprehensive guide to payout amounts for leg fractures and special damages.
Compensation Payout Guide to Fractured Coccyx – A comprehensive guide to payout amounts for a fractured coccyx.
Find an Accident and Emergency Service Near You – An NHS search bar for your closest A&E.
The Motor Insurer’s Bureau – The homepage for the Motor Insurer’s Bureau, who can help you claim if the other driver is uninsured or untraceable.
The Highway Code – Guidelines on safe driving practices.
We also have some other guides you may find useful:
- Public accident claims hot spots
- Council slip and trip accidents
- Public transport accidents
- How to make a public liability claim
- Making a claim against the council
- Claiming for a pothole injury
- Making a claim against a shop
- Accidents in a public park
- Cycling accident claims
- Claiming for injuries suffered while shopping