A Los Angeles MTA bus accident can significantly impact your life. One unfortunate result that we often see here in Southern California is that bus accident victims often lose their job. At Salamati Law, we understand how stressful and unjust this is for you and your family. Fortunately, there are laws in place that enable you to recover lost wages and lost earning capacity in the aftermath of a bus accident.
What are lost wages?
Lost wages typically refer to income that you lost due to the accident. In other words, it includes all amounts that you would have earned from your job(s) had you not been injured. Based on 25 years of experience, our Los Angeles bus accident lawyers have found that some of these amounts can include the following:
- Regular pay, whether salary or hourly
- Pay for overtime
- Income from self-employment
- Sick days
- Personal days
- Any other perks or benefits that you lost, such as free meals or car allowances
What information do you need?
At Salamati Law, our number one priority is our clients. To receive the financial compensation that you deserve for your lost wages, you should submit the following to the insurance company:
- Employment records: This includes records for your salaries, wages, and all other income, such as pay stubs, your contract for employment, and any other document that may establish your income. If you have access to pay stubs, it is a good idea to submit pay stubs from both before and after your accident.
- Employer statement: This is a letter that you can request from your employer. It should include your salary or wages, the hours you used to work before the accident occurred, the hours you have worked since the accident, and the hours of work you missed. Be sure that your employer lists your gross wages rather than your net.
- Income tax returns: This is another way to establish what you have lost due to this accident. You should include tax documents both from before and after the accident occurred.
What is lost earning capacity?
In addition to lost wages, a qualified Los Angeles personal injury attorney will understand that you may also be eligible to recover for what is referred to as lost earning capacity. Unlike lost wages, which looks to the past, lost earning capacity looks to the future.
What this boils down to is what you likely would have earned had the accident not occurred. Lost earning capacity is typically more challenging to prove than lost wages– because of its speculative nature. It typically comes into play for more serious injuries but could also emerge as an issue in a case where a settlement is reached quickly, and your injuries remain unhealed. Documents and information that may help prove lost earning capacity include the following:
- Proof of past income.
- Testimony from your employer regarding your past salary, job performance, and opportunities for promotion.
- Your doctor(s) can testify as to your physical and mental health both before and after the accident and shed light on how your injuries have affected your ability to work.
- An expert in vocational rehabilitation can discuss the treatment necessary, whether or not you will be able to return to work, and to what extent you may be temporarily or permanently limited in your job performance.
- A forensic economist can testify about salary trends within your industry and what you could have expected to earn but for the injury.
- Family, friends, and colleagues can discuss what you were like before the injury, such as your life goals, interests, and hobbies.
Hiring an attorney is essential
Losing your job due to a bus accident is stressful enough as it is. Do not compound that stress by attempting to handle your case on your own. A qualified Los Angeles bus accident attorney can guide you through this confusing and challenging process and help maximize your recovery.
Contact our team of Los Angeles bus accident lawyers
If you have lost your job due to a bus accident in Los Angeles, call Salamati Law today for your free case review. We are available 24 hours a day, and we never charge you anything unless you prevail.