The last thing you should be worrying about after a car accident is whether or not your bills will get paid next month. When you are trying to recover from serious injuries, you should not have to worry about missing work and losing pay. In some cases, if your insurance covers it, you can get your lost wages by filing a claim with the insurance company. However, insurance companies may seek to limit the amount you can recover to the bare minimum. There are personal injury protection, or PIP, policies that are sometimes offered as part of a car insurance policy that cover loss of wages. In some states PIP insurance is mandated, but not in South Carolina, although it may be a good idea and it is relatively inexpensive.
Claims Beyond Insurance
However, even without insurance that covers lost wages, you can recover for lost wages in a personal injury suit against the at-fault driver. Under South Carolina law, the definition of personal injury includes loss of wages as an actual economic damage recoverable in a personal injury lawsuit. If you sustain injuries that cause you to miss work, or even if you use your vacation and sick days to visit the doctor or other attend appointments connected to the accident, you may still be able to recover for that short-term loss of wages.
In some cases, an accident can leave a person disabled to some degree and this may cause a decreased ability to work. If this happens, a person’s ability to earn their same wage as before the accident is diminished. Fortunately, this type of loss of wage is also compensable, and a court would calculate the loss based on a variety of factors, including your age and career trajectory prior to the injury. In some cases, you may even be able to recover for missed job interviews or missed promotional opportunities if they can be sufficiently linked to your injuries.
Making Your Claim
To ensure that you can make a successful claim for lost wages, it is important to document your losses as thoroughly as possible. You may request letters from your physician showing a connection between your injuries and your loss of work, or a letter from your employer documenting that you missed work due to your injury. The more documentation you can gather to prove your case, the more likely you are to make your case and receive adequate compensation.
In South Carolina the law allows a person to recover for a personal injury within three years of the injury unless other exceptions allow. Therefore, it is important to act within the allowed time so as not to be barred from recovery.
Contact A Greenville Personal Injury Attorney
If you were in a car accident and sustained serious injuries, you need time to recover without stressing about the possibility of your financial life falling apart. Whether filing claims with an insurance company or pursuing a personal injury lawsuit, you need an attorney who can work for you while you recover. Contact experienced attorney Dan Pruitt in Greenville for a consultation on the facts of your particular case.
Dan Pruitt is a Personal Injury Attorney who practices in Greenville, SC. He graduated from University of Georgia, and has been practicing law for 25 years. Dan Pruitt believes in fighting for the injured. Learn more about his experience by clicking here.