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Understanding calculations for lost wages

On Behalf of | Feb 1, 2022 | Personal Injury |

When a person is injured in a car accident, he or she could have to pay expensive medical bills and may lose wages because he or she is unable to work. The lost wages can be temporary or permanent, depending on the extent of his or her injuries.

It can have a devastating financial impact on the injured person and the family that may rely on him or her for support. There is helpful information available about lost wages and how they are calculated in a personal injury case.

Lost wages overview and documentation

When an injured person is awarded damages for lost wages, that compensation is intended to help replace the income that he or she would have earned if the accident hadn’t happened.

The injured person may be required to produce medical records, a doctor’s note or other documentation indicating how much time they were told to take off of work in order to heal. Also, he or she may need to provide paystubs, tax statements and other documentation to confirm his or her employment.


For hourly employees, lost wages are calculated by taking their hourly wage and multiplying it by how many hours of work they lost. If the employee is salaried, the lost wages are calculated by taking his or her yearly salary, dividing it by the number of hours he or she works in a year and then multiplying it by how many hours of work he or she lost.

There are other calculations for self-employed professionals, future income losses and lost earning capacity, which also may be part of a personal injury case. If a person has been in a car accident and lost wages as a result, an experienced attorney can provide representation and advice about filing a claim.