Fonseca Law Solicitors


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Claiming for loss of earnings when injured in an accident

Accident and injuryBeing involved in an accident is terrible enough, but there are also other aspects that can cause unwanted stress such as having to take time off work. This can be problematic for anyone - especially those who are not entitled to company sick pay. Time off work is usually something that happens immediately following the accident as this is when any pain or trauma is typically at its most severe, but it can also be later in the future when flare ups may occur, or if further treatment or surgery needs to be carried out.

I’ve been injured in an accident that wasn’t my fault so can I claim for loss of earnings?

If you have unfortunately suffered a financial loss through the cause of an injury, which may be time away from work that you didn’t receive pay for, or a loss of overtime or bonus payment as a result of being unable to work due to the injury, then these losses could be claimed. Your loss of earnings can be included as part of your personal injury claim. Documentary evidence must be provided that proves the loss and the documents that are required will depend on whether you are employed or self-employed.

How can I prove loss of earnings?

If you’re employed, you’ll have to provide copies of your wage slips as evidence to show the salary or hourly wage that you earn both before and after the accident (provided you have returned to work). The employed is usually contacted to verify the period of absence and to confirm the reason. These claims are usually very straightforward, but fluctuating hours, loss of overtime or bonus payments, or unsociable working hour payments can make things a little more complicated.

I haven’t returned to work so will this cause problems?

This shouldn’t cause any problems provided you can supply your proof of earnings prior to you taking the time off due to the accident. The fact you haven’t returned to work yet won’t cause any problems.

Does being self-employed make any different to a claim?

Anybody who is self-employed will be asked to provide copies of self-assessment ta returns and profit and loss accounts to prove earnings. Claimants who are self-employed can sometimes face more difficulty with their claim as it’s not possible to see the loss in the same way as it is for an employed person who has a clear reduction figure on their pay slip.

This means it’s all the more important to instruct experienced solicitors who are experts in the field of personal injury claims and who understand methods of calculation and how to best present the claim. How it’s presented will depend on whether the claimant is a sole trader, in a partnership, or the director of the company.  It may be beneficial to instruct an accountant if the claim is very complex or high value so that your loss of earnings are calculated s accurately as possible.

I was fully paid while off work, do I still have to claim?

Even if you received full payment while you were absent from work there may still be a claim to be made, but on behalf of your employer. This claim is known as employer’s recoupment. Many employment contracts tend to include a clause that allow employers to recover any sick pay when a claim is being filed against a third party. As the injured employee, it’s important to consider this to ensure that the employment contract hasn’t been breached, which could result in the injured employee being responsible for those sums.

How much is statutory sick pay?

If eligible, the statutory sick pay (SSP) should be paid by the employer if their employee has been injured in an accident and have been unable to work for four or more days. The current level of SSP is £94.25 per week (which is payable following three initial “waiting days”). This amount can be paid for as many as 28 weeks.

Sick pay or benefits that are paid as a direct result of fan injury will be offset against a claim for loss of earnings. This is so that the claimant is placed in the same position as they would have been had the accident not occurred and helps to avoid any “double recovery”.

Our team here at Fonseca Law are personal injury specialists with many years of experience in handling all types of injury claims including loss of earnings. To discuss any of our legal services don’t hesitate to get in touch by calling 01495 303124, e-mailing or by completing our online contact form.