Claiming Lost Wages After A Texas Accident
One question we get asked frequently is whether or not a person is entitled to compensation for lost wages when they miss time from work as a result of being injured. In the state of Texas, you can be compensated for lost wages, provided that certain factors are met.
For most people who have been seriously injured in an accident, such as car accident or truck accident, missing work and losing wages because of someone else’s negligence is frustrating. The good news is that, in many cases, an injured person can make a claim for lost wages after an accident.
How Can You Make a Lost Wage Claim?
If you were hurt in an accident where someone else was to blame, and you missed work, and therefore suffered lost wages, you can often be compensated for whatever wages you lost because of the accident.
Who Pays Your Lost Wage Claim?
To know who should pay your lost wage claim, you have to determine who was at fault in the accident that caused your injuries. If another driver was at fault, then you would first look to their insurance company to pay your lost wages. However, you should know that the other driver’s insurance company will probably not pay your claims as they occur. This includes both medical bills and lost wages. If they pay you at all, they will want to do it at the end of your claim and will offer one lump-sum settlement that covers both your medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering, etc. It is almost unheard of for an insurance company to pay you for lost wages as you incur them. Usually, they will do everything they can to avoid paying you anything at all.
You should be warned, however, that the other driver’s insurance company will likely try to claim that their insured driver was not liable or responsible for the accident in order to avoid paying you anything. This is one reason that you may want to get an injury attorney to hold the other driver’s insurance company accountable.
If the at-fault driver didn’t have valid insurance in place at the time of the accident, you would need to file a claim with your own insurance company. Your own insurance company will ONLY pay your lost wage claims if you have the certain kinds of insurance coverage.
Filing a Lost Wage Claim With Your Own Insurance
If the other driver didn’t have insurance, you would need to file a lost wage claim with your own insurance company. However, your insurance company will only pay a lost wage claim if you have very specific types of insurance, which are discussed below.
Personal Injury Protection (PIP) Lost Wage Claims
First, if you don’t have PIP coverage on your own insurance plan, you should STOP what you’re doing, call your insurance company and ADD IT NOW! It’s that important.
If you do have PIP coverage on through your own insurance company, it will pay up to 80% of the wages you lost from missing work, as long as the lost time was related to an accident. The other 20% can be used to reimburse you for medical treatment,prescriptions, etc
Note: You can make a PIP claim on your own insurance even if the other driver’s insurance company pays you for lost wages and medical expenses. In this way, PIP is just extra coverage (icing on the cake).
Sometimes people are afraid to use the PIP coverage on their own policy because they think that it will negatively affect their insurance rates – THIS IS NOT TRUE! In fact, Texas law prohibits insurance companies from raising your rates, or cancelling your policy because you make a PIP claim.
Uninsured Motorist Lost Wage Claims
If you’re driving in San Antonio, or anywhere else in Texas, the chances are very high that someone who doesn’t have valid liability insurance will hit you. I always tell my client’s that it’s “When” and not “if” an uninsured driver hits you, because it will happen eventually.
If you’re unfortunate enough to get hit by someone who doesn’t have insurance, you may be able to submit a lost wage claim to your own insurance company if you have uninsured bodily injury protection on your own policy.
When someone who does not have proper liability insurance has injured you, your own insurance company steps into the shoes of the liability insurer as long as you have the proper uninsured motorist coverage through your own insurance carrier.
If you don’t have uninsured motorist bodily injury coverage on your own policy, you should add it. Anyone driving in Texas without uninsured motorist coverage is taking a serious risk that could jeopardize their health, and their family’s financial future. If you would like to know whether or not you have the best insurance coverage to protect you and your family, we offer a FREE no obligation insurance coverage review, and can help you decide what insurance coverage is right for you and your family. Click here to start your free insurance coverage review, or call us at (210) 910-4357.