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Determining Lost Wage Totals When You’re Self Employed

Determining Lost Wage Totals When You’re Self Employed

When it comes to personal injury, determining the wages you lost as a result of your accident can sometimes be straightforward. For example, if you make $10 an hour, and you missed one day or 8 hours of work, then you lost $80 in wages. 

The aforementioned numbers were simple and straightforward for a reason. However, a real-life scenario can be more complex. How do you determine lost wages if you are a self-employed individual? This can take many forms, and it doesn’t just apply to people who own their own business. Many people in the trucking industry are owner/operators, and other people freelance as web designers or writers. 

Factors To Consider

Save yourself the time and ask some of these questions before you approach an attorney. And even more importantly, gather the relevant documentation to back your answers. 

You need an idea of how much you lost as a direct result and how much you lost indirectly as well. In other words, how much income did you lose as a result of your injury? In addition to that, how much did you lose in potential future earnings? 

Do you need to know an exact figure? Of course not. This is one way in which an attorney can help you. But these are some of the questions that will get discussed, and it only helps to have at least considered these beforehand.


Everyone pays taxes. As someone who is self-employed, you are likely working as an independent contractor. Instead of a Form W-2, you likely received a Form 1099 MISC or NEC. If you have several clients, then you have one from each.

Using your 1099s is an excellent way to determine an amount for your lost wages. The more evidence you have to prove how much earning potential you lost, the better. As someone who is self-employed, you might have variations in your income from month to month. Again, this is something an attorney can advise you about, but be prepared to provide the documentation. 

Small Business Owners

If you own a small business and are seeking lost wages as a result of an accident, the idea is very much the same. The documentation, however, might be greater in scale. Rather than gathering your 1099s, you have a robust amount of documentation that can validate the worth of your lost time. How many invoices or bills did you receive that you had to pay while you were injured? Any profit or loss statements will stand as proof of you and your business’s earning potential. And much like the independent contractor, your previous tax returns are excellent sources of financial documentation.

Silberstein, Awad & Miklos, P.C.

If you have been a victim of an accident and are seeking compensation for lost wages, the dedicated and loyal attorneys at Silberstein, Awad & Miklos, P.C. will fight the compensation you deserve. Self-employed workers are entitled to recover their lost wages as well. Let us advise you, so you receive what you are worth. Call 1-877-ASK4SAM or send a message here for a free consultation.