Ask a Personal Injury Attorney: What Are Lost Wages, and Why Do They Matter?

If you find yourself in a position to file a personal injury case, and your injury has resulted in lost wages, then you should be compensated for them. However, at The Law Offices of Larry H. Parker, we have found that many of our clients are not clear on what we mean by “lost wages” and why they are so important to their case. Keep reading to get the facts, and then contact The Law Offices of Larry H. Parker at 800-333-0000 for a free legal consultation.

Lost Wages Are One of the Types of Damages an Injured Party Can Recover

The first thing to know is that lost wages are just one type of damages you might be eligible to recover if you are injured at work. Depending on the specifics of your case, you might be able to recover lost wages, future lost wages, compensation for emotional distress, punitive damages, and property damage, amongst others.

The Specifics of Lost Wages

As the name suggests, lost wages (also sometimes referred to as back wages) is money a court awards to replace a plaintiff’s lost income. It should be the money that you would have earned if whatever wrongful conduct you are suing over had not taken place.

Note that there is a difference between front wages, otherwise known as future wages. Front wages are designed to pay you for wages that you would have earned in the future if you had not been injured, while lost wages are designed to reimburse you for what you would have already earned.

Lost Wages Can Include Additional Types of Compensation

When determining your lost wages, do not just think about the actual hours you missed from work and the money you did not receive – think of all the compensation you lost. For example, did you lose your health insurance? Were you required to use paid time off, vacation time, or sick time due to your injury? These and other lost forms of compensation are considered lost wages.

The Importance of Lost Wages

Now that you understand what lost wages are, it is important to understand why they are such an integral part of a personal injury claim. When it comes to a lawsuit, your lost wages and your medical bills are the two biggest factors that impact the amount of your award. If your medical bills were just a few hundred dollars and you didn’t miss work, then you might have a case, but it would likely not be worth your time to sue.

On the other hand, if you have missed days, weeks, or months from work, and have suffered a serious injury that resulted in significant medical bills, then it will likely be worth it. To determine the facts about your own personal injury case, contact The Law Offices of Larry H. Parker at 800-333-0000 to find out how we can help.