Financial Assistance: Wage Loss

Many of our clients are unable to work following an accident due to their injuries. While they stop earning wages, their bills continue to pile up. However, there are a variety of programs that can assist our clients so that they can keep paying the bills. Our firm assists our clients in navigating the complexities of these programs so that they can focus on getting better.

The first line of defence is an employee’s entitlement to wage loss benefits through their employer. Many employees are covered under a Short Term Illness and Injury Plan, or a Short Term Disability Plan. These plans typically cover a large portion of the employee’s wage loss when they initially take time off work. For many of our clients, this will cover their wages while they recover from injuries such as whiplash, soft tissue injuries, and broken bones. However, these plans only cover the employee for a short period of time. Once the plan runs out, the employee needs a new plan.

This is where Long Term Disability plans kick in. They typically cover about two thirds of an employee’s regular salary while they remain off work in the long term. This might occur while an employee awaits surgery, deals with severe depression, or recovers from a brain injury. Under these plans, the insurer will often want to terminate the employee’s coverage, arguing that the employee is healthy enough to work. Our firm has experience in dealing with insurance companies to ensure that our clients keep getting the money they are entitled to. This can be a complex process, and sometimes involves sending our clients to medical specialists so that we can obtain assessments and medical reports.

Some of our clients work for employers that do not provide Short Term or Long Term Disability plans, and might instead find that they are laid off when they are unable to work. These employees may be entitled to collect Employment Insurance. This provides partial coverage of lost wages for a certain time period once the employee is off work. However, this will eventually run out.

Once all other wage loss replacement plans have been exhausted, an employee involved in a motor vehicle accident may be eligible for Total Temporary Disability benefits through ICBC. These cover a maximum of $300 per week. We assist eligible clients in obtaining these benefits.

These wage loss replacement benefits help our clients to make it through a difficult time period, but they usually do not cover a person’s entire wage losses. Once the client’s injuries get better or their recovery plateaus, we claim the remainder of the wage losses when we negotiate a final settlement. If you have a personal injury claim, call us before you call ICBC and let our experienced lawyers help you get compensation.

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