Can I Be Reimbursed for Lost Wages After a Car Accident in Georgia?
When you suffer injuries that prevent you from working, your losses are both tangible and intangible. Working adds meaning to your life and allows you independence and freedom. But the most important losses when you cannot work may be financial. You cannot pay for medical treatment or even living expenses without a paycheck.
One of the primary economic losses accident victims suffer is lost income. Fortunately, when someone else’s negligent driving injures you, your claim against them can include lost salary, wages, and other income.
The King Firm can help you explore your legal rights and options after a car accident in Tifton, GA. Call us today at (229) 386-1376 to schedule a free consultation with one of our seasoned car accident attorneys.
How The King Firm Can Help You Recover Compensation After a Car Crash in Tifton, GA
The King Firm has provided personal injury legal services to accident victims in Tifton, Georgia, and the surrounding areas since 2014. Our founding attorney has over 17 years of experience, including time defending insurance companies against personal injury claims. Our personal injury firm uses that knowledge and experience to help accident victims fight insurers.
After you suffer an injury in an accident, The King Firm helps with the following:
- Free consultation to discuss your accident and explain your legal rights under Georgia law
- A record of successfully recovering tens of millions of dollars in compensation for injured clients
- Contingency fee representation so you only pay legal fees after we win or settle your case
- Comprehensive legal services from start to finish, including internal investigatory work, collecting evidence, negotiating on your behalf, and taking your case to court if needed
Car accidents can cause devastating injuries that can cause physical and financial harm. Contact The King Firm for a free consultation to discuss your accident and the types of compensation you can pursue with a trusted Tifton car accident attorney.
How Much Income Do Georgia Accident Victims Lose After a Crash?
In 2016, the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) estimated that Georgia car accidents cost the economy nearly $10.8 billion every year. The cost of traffic fatalities alone tops $2.1 billion, with the remaining attributed to non-fatal injuries.
These losses include:
- Medical expenses
- Lost productivity for employers
- Lost income for workers
- Legal expenses
- Insurance administration costs
- Travel impacts, such as delays, fuel, and pollution due to crash-related congestion
- Property damage
Car crashes also have intangible costs that economists cannot measure, including:
- Loss of lifespan for fatal accident victims and their families
- Physical pain
- Emotional distress and mental anguish
- Lost quality of life
According to one study, about 71% of the economic cost of productivity losses represents lost income and fringe benefits. Suppose your car crash caused permanent ligament damage in your hand, preventing you from doing your job. When you quit your job, you lose your paycheck and benefits, such as insurance and 401(k).
Using the Georgia Department of Transportation’s Crash Data Portal, the state had over 156,000 people injured or killed in car accidents in 2021. Using Georgia’s economic loss data and car accident statistics, you can calculate that each accident victim in 2021 lost about $49,000 in wages and fringe benefits.
Just bear in mind that those crash victims who died had income losses spanning their entire remaining lifetimes. As a result, their numbers can skew the average.
How To Pursue a Car Accident Claim for Lost Income in Georgia
Even a minor injury can disable you from working. Most Americans rely on their paychecks to pay for housing, food, utilities, transportation, and other living expenses for themselves and their families. As you face the mounting costs of a crash, you may wonder, “Can I be reimbursed for lost wages after a car accident in Georgia?”
The answer is yes. Most car accident claims include lost income as a major component of their economic losses. Some questions that can arise around claims for lost income are:
What Income Gets Included?
The at-fault driver is responsible for all economic losses caused by their negligence. This can include:
- Independent contractor income
- Income from side jobs
If your injuries prevented you from working, you can usually include the income you lost during your recovery. When injuries cause permanent disabilities, you can include your reduction in income over your entire remaining work life.
For example, if you broke your wrist in a car accident and took three weeks off from work, your claim would include three weeks of income.
But suppose that you herniated a disc and had to quit your job as a truck driver and take a lower-paying job as a truck dispatcher. You can add up the income differences for every year until you would have retired. If you had worked an additional 20 years and lost $10,000 per year in pay, you could claim $200,000 in income losses.
What About Homemakers and Stay-at-Home Parents?
If you do not have a job, you still contribute to the household. You will not include any lost wages in your injury claim. But you will include the lost value of your household services. You will typically include the replacement cost of the tasks you perform, such as:
If it costs you $700 per week to replace all of those services, you would include that amount in your claim.
Schedule a Free Consultation With Our Tifton Car Accident Lawyers
A car accident can push you to the brink of bankruptcy. To discuss your crash and the financial compensation you can seek, contact The King Firm for a free consultation with an experienced Tifton car accident lawyer.