Once we receive details of your financial losses, we will prepare a schedule of damages. This is a list of all losses you have incurred as a result of the accident. The most common losses that you may have incurred are as follows;
Loss of earnings
There are multiple types of loss of earnings claims that can be made depending on your employment situation. We will give you an overview here but your case handler will be able to give you more specific advice based on your own circumstances.
- Employed – if you are employed and were not paid for your time off work, we will write to your employer for details of the loss you have suffered. If you are employed and have been paid in full for your absence, your employer may be entitled to make a subrogated claim within your personal injury claim. It is common for employment contracts to have a clause which states that, where you are off work as a result of an accident and you are pursuing a personal injury claim, you are required to repay any sick pay you have received to your employer. If you were paid in full, we will write to your employer to find out if they have a loss to claim and, once recovered, we would pay this directly to them. This is included as a separate head of claim and is not deducted from your injury compensation. It is therefore very important that you advise your solicitor if you are absent from your place of work so that this can be investigated,
- Self-employed – if you are self-employed, you will need to provide profit and loss accounts and tax returns for 3 years prior to the accident and for the period covering your absence, if they are available. Self-employed loss of earnings can be difficult to claim if you have a new business or if your income has fluctuated over the previous years. The third-party insurers, however, will need to see something which demonstrates your income. If you do not believe your tax returns would contain an accurate account of your loss, you may wish to provide copies of invoices or appointment books alongside your tax returns.
If Watermans have arranged treatment for you, we will include the cost in the schedule of damages and pay this back to the treatment provider.
If you have arranged your own treatment, you will need to provide receipts for this treatment and details of the person who carried it out.
If you have incurred travel costs as a direct result of the accident, these can be included in the claim. For example, this may be trips to your GP, hospital, treatment. If you traveled by car, we will put forward a claim based on how many miles you have travelled. If you used public transport, you will need to provide copies of tickets or receipts confirming the amount of the loss.
Care and assistance
If you have required assistance in your daily life from family, you can make a claim for this. You will need to let us know how much assistance you have received, how often and roughly how many hours this amounts to. We may also make a statement from the person who has provided this assistance to you.
Child car seats
If your car is in an accident, you must replace any car seats that were in the vehicle, even if they do not appear to be damaged. Make sure you buy a “like for like” replacement otherwise you may not be able to recover the full sum. In order to claim back the cost of a car seat, you will need to provide images of the original car seat and a receipt if you have one. You will also need the payment receipt/invoice for the replacement car seat.
Damaged personal items
Any items that were damaged in the accident can be included in your claim. Some common ones we see are mobile phones, clothing, dash cams. Evidence for these is the same as for car seats – we need proof of the original item, by way of images and receipts if you have them, and receipts for the replacement items. You are under a duty to mitigate your losses so if your damaged item is repairable, and this would be cheaper than replacing it, you must do this. If you have an item (e.g. a phone) inspected by an expert and they tell you it cannot be repaired, ask them to put this in writing. We recommend keeping hold of any damaged items in case the third party insurers wish to inspect them.
Finally, we will include a sum within your claim for the general inconvenience. This is a modest sum and simply represents the inconvenience of having to complete documents, speak to solicitors and attend a medical examination.
This list is not exhaustive so if there are any other losses you have incurred, let your case handler know and they can talk to you about evidence that it required.
Once you have provided details of your losses, we can begin to settle your claim.
If you have been involved in a road accident – and you feel sure it wasn’t your fault – you should contact Watermans Solicitors as soon as possible. Our expert accident solicitors can help establish whether you have a valid claim and advise on how much compensation you could be entitled to.