What Happens if a Personal Injury Affects Your Ability to Work?

If you cannot work because of medical malpractice or an accident which was not your fault, please contact us straightaway. You could be entitled to make a personal injury claim. This allows you to recover your lost earnings. You could also receive compensation for your loss of future earning capacity.

Cannot work following an accident or negligence

If you are involved in an accident, or you are the victim of negligence, your ability to work might be affected. For example, imagine that you are knocked off your bike and fracture both arms. This will likely make work very difficult for you, no matter what job you have. Maybe you are employed as a receptionist, a carpenter or a gym instructor – two fractured arms will have an impact on these kinds of jobs, and many more besides.

As a result, you might need to take time off work. This could be for a temporary period while you recover from your injuries. However, if you are left with permanent health issues, you may never be able to return to work. Or you may have to return in a reduced capacity, meaning you work fewer hours or take a more junior position. Alternatively, you may have to search for an entirely different career that accommodates your injuries.

This can have a huge financial toll. You may be entitled to some sick pay and Employment Insurance (EI), but if you exceed your limit, you will lose income. You may also miss out on promotions or overtime. If your ability to work has been affected in the long-term, you may have to give up work or start a lesser-paid role. However, you will still have to pay for your mortgage, rent and other outgoings.

What can you do?

Although the outlook may seem very bleak, there is action you can take. This depends on the level of insurance you have, the type of accident you have suffered, and whether or not the accident was your fault.

Lots of employers offer insurance plans. This provides you with a percentage of your income, should you suffer either short-term or long-term disability. If you are not eligible to EI/disability benefits and you are involved in a car accident, ICBC is contractually obliged to provide you with wage loss benefits. You can only claim a maximum of $300 per week, so you may still be out of pocket. If you suffer a workplace injury, WorkSafeBC can provide you with compensation. This is usually 90% of your average net earnings.

You may also be able to make a personal injury claim. This is available to people who have been injured through no fault of their own, perhaps in a public place accident, a motor vehicle accident or an animal attack. It is also available to those who have been harmed due to negligence, such as medical malpractice. Those who are injured at work usually make a claim through WorkSafeBC, although there are some exceptions.

Compensation for a personal injury claim

If you do make a personal injury claim, you are awarded compensation for your pain, suffering and financial losses. This includes your lost earnings. This is important, because although you may have recovered some of your lost earnings via ICBC or other means, you may still be in the red. By making a claim, you can recuperate your losses. You can also claim compensation for the way in which your future earning capacity has been affected.

If you are struggling to work following an accident, please do not suffer in silence. We understand the financial trauma that can be associated with a personal injury. We can help restore your finances, ensuring you are not left out of pocket.

To speak to a Vancouver personal injury lawyer, either fill in the free online enquiry form or call us on 604 684 0040.

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