Recovering Lost Income for Self-Employed Workers After a Serious Injury

The biggest task for injured Alabamians, besides physically and mentally recovering, is getting the money they deserve from the responsible party. It is not too difficult to see why compensation is so important for those who suffer a serious personal injury—medical bills often reach into the tens of thousands (if not hundreds of thousands). 

Compounding this problem for many injured people is their inability to work. Some people are out of work for just a short while; others may have to learn different vocational skills to accommodate their new limitations. After especially serious accidents, some people may completely lose the ability to work for an indefinite period of time. The method for getting damages (compensation) varies slightly depending on whether or not you are able to work again in any capacity.

Lost Wages for Alabamians Temporarily Out of Work

Compensatory damages in a personal injury case are designed to help victims and their families recoup verifiable monetary losses. As mentioned above, medical expenses are a common type of compensatory damages. As long as the victim’s representatives retain individual bills for hospital stays, doctor’s visits, medications, physical therapy appointments, and other treatments, it usually is not difficult to determine the appropriate amount of damages.

Those who work regular hours for an employer can usually submit pay stubs in a personal injury case in order to recover lost wages, another type of compensatory damages. This can be more difficult for contractors, sole proprietors, and other self-employed workers.

Contractors sometimes calculate their average income from the past several years for a lost wages claim, but seasonal fluctuations for some workers might require a different approach. In these cases, looking back to previous years’ earnings in the same time period can be helpful. 

Affidavit of Independent Contractor Regarding Loss of Wages

One document independent contractors should submit in a personal injury case is a particular affidavit that estimates lost wages for the time they are unable to work. An affidavit is a written statement with the same legal weight as courtroom testimony. If you are attempting to use this affidavit to allege lost wages as an independent contractor, you must submit information that you swear, under penalty of perjury, is correct. The affidavit must be signed by a Notary Public.

Tax documents such as 1099s and W-9s can also bolster lost income claims by contractors. Any contracts and emails between current and former clients should be gathered and presented to the court.

Don’t Fight Alone

The unfortunate truth is that getting the compensation you deserve after a serious personal injury is often much more difficult than it should be. The person or entity responsible for your injury might have deep pockets and fight your claim every step of the way. 

A personal injury attorney with a track record of delivering for clients is your best resource in these instances, and we would be proud to stand by your side. Contact us today for a consultation.

John M. Totten