Can I Recover Lost Wages if I’m Self-Employed? 5 Documents You Can Use to Verify

November 29, 2023

Can I Recover Lost Wages if I’m Self-Employed? 5 Documents You Can Use to Verify

The number of self-employed workers have gone up since the pandemic.

Studies from the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics estimate that over 10 million Americans are self-employed. That number continues to exponentially increase following the COVID-19 Pandemic. 

There are many reasons why workers enjoy being self-employed

  • Self-employed workers can ditch a traditional 9-5.
  • Self-employed workers are their own boss. They do not have to answer to another person.
  • A self-employed worker is usually running their own business or going after more creative goals.

As with most job scenarios, there are always potential disadvantages.

  • Income may not be steady
  • If you work at home, you may struggle with a work/life balance
  • Paid time off like vacation and sick days are non-existent

Imagine a situation where you are in a severe car accident after another vehicle runs a red light. You suffer injuries that require you to step away from work for a bit. 

Working with a lawyer, you attempt to recover damages.  Damages are the amount of money awarded to a plaintiff following a lawsuit, and can include:

  • Medical bills
  • Pain and suffering
  • Lost wages

Lost wages are the amount of income one could have earned, but “lost” following an injury that forced them to take time off from work. 

  • Your regular pay rate
  • Overtime pay from working extended hours
  • Commission 
  • Bonuses
  • Vacation, personal or sick days 

What happens if you are self-employed? Can you still recover lost wages?

Yes, self-employed workers can still potentially recover lost wages. A successful claim will require workers to prove what they would likely have made during the time period in which they could not work.

To help with a claim, a self-employed worker can use the following documents:

  • Previous tax returns – Your tax returns can serve as documentation of previous income.
  • Billing statements in the months leading up to your injury – Any billing statements will showcase earned income.
  • Billing statements for the same time period from previous years – Similar to the previous example, this can provide a longer scope of payments. 
  • Receipts or invoices from clients – This can showcase money that you earned.
  • Bank statements – This will help document previous transactions and deposits.

A self-employed worker may still qualify for lost wages

Additionally, self-employed workers may be able to recover wages for lost business opportunities.

For example, if you work as a freelance graphic designer and break your hand, rendering you unable to perform your usual job duties, you could claim lost business opportunities. The claim would state that the  injury has prevented you from not only working with previous clients, but from taking on new ones as well. 

Although usually more difficult for self-employed workers, you may even have a claim for future lost wages, or lost future earnings.  Future lost wages showcase the potential amount you could’ve expected to earn. It can help victims recover for future losses because of the injury. 

If you are a self-employed worker injured in a car accident, the road to recovery can be filled with ups and downs. If you were hit by a negligent driver and suffered injuries, you may find yourself unable to work. The financial setbacks can be devastating.

Having a confident, hard-working attorney by your side can help ease the process of trying to recover lost wages.  At C&B Law Group, our team of Los Angeles attorneys has a 99 percent success rate at settling cases, including ones similar to yours.

A car accident can affect victims with various injuries like:

  • Damage to your neck that makes it difficult for you to work at a computer desk
  • Broken hands or wrists that render you unable to type or utilize materials you make or design
  • A traumatic brain injury that leads to memory loss
  • Lower back pain that decreases worker output and forces you to exert more
  • Cuts that disfigure your face, arms, etc.
  • Interior organ damage, like a puncture to your liver, or internal hemorrhaging
  • Paralysis
  • Wrongful death

Don’t stress about finances due to your inability to work after a car accident. Have a personal injury lawyer at C&B Law Group look at your case to determine if and how we can recover maximum compensation for you. 

Contact us today about a free consultation!

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