What If I Missed Work Due to a Car Accident?
Being involved in a car accident is a stressful and jarring experience. But it can be even more frustrating if you miss work because of your injuries. Not only do you have to worry about the cost of repairs and medical bills, but there is also the risk of losing your job if you’re out of work for an extended period of time.
However, if you’re out of work due to a car accident caused by someone else’s negligence, you may be entitled to compensation for lost wages. In some cases, your employer may also be required to hold your job while you recover from your injuries.
If you have been involved in a car accident, it is important to speak with an experienced personal injury lawyer who can help you understand your rights and ensure that you are fairly compensated for your losses.
Employee’s Rights When The Job is At Risk of Termination After an Accident
California is an at-will state, which means that employees can be fired at any time and for any reason that is not illegal. There are a few exceptions to this rule, such as if the employee has an employment contract that states otherwise or if the firing is due to discrimination.
However, an employer can generally fire an employee for being involved in a car accident. This is especially true if the employee’s negligence caused the accident.
For example, if an employee was speeding and caused a multi-car pileup, the employer would likely be within their rights to fire the employee. In contrast, if the employee was involved in a minor fender bender that was not their fault, it is less likely that the employer would take disciplinary action.
Ultimately, whether or not an employee can be fired for being involved in a car accident will depend on the circumstances of the accident and the employer’s policies. A personal injury lawyer in California can assess your case and advise you accordingly.
The Family and Medical Leave Act
The Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993 (FMLA) is a federal law that provides employees with up to 12 weeks of unpaid, job-protected leave per year for specific family and medical reasons. The FMLA applies to all public and private sector employers with 50 or more employees. In California, the FMLA applies to all employers with 50 or more employees for at least 20 weeks in the current or previous year.
If you work under a covered employer, the law protects you when you need to take leave for a qualifying reason. This includes your serious personal injury. If you’re terminated while on FMLA leave, you may have grounds for a wrongful termination lawsuit against your employer. However, you must:
- Have worked for the company for a year or more
- Have worked for 1,250 hours or more during the previous year
- Be working at a location with 50 or more employees within a 75-mile radius
Can Accident Victims Recover Lost Wages From At-Fault Drivers and Parties?
In California, accident victims who have been injured due to the negligence of another party may be able to recover damages for their losses. This includes lost wages for time missed from work due to the accident.
To recover lost wages, victims must be able to show that they would have been able to earn the wages had the accident not occurred. For example, if a victim was in the process of training for a new job at the time of the accident, they may not be able to recover lost wages for the time missed from work during their training.
However, if the victim was employed at the time of the accident and missed work due to their injuries, they may be eligible to recover lost wages. In some cases, victims may also be able to recover future lost earnings if their injuries have caused them to miss out on job opportunities or promotions.
To learn more about recovering lost wages after an accident, victims should speak with an experienced personal injury attorney.
The Do’s and Don’ts of Trying to Get Back to Work After A Car Accident
After a car accident, it is important to take the time you need to recover both physically and mentally. Returning to work too soon can exacerbate your injuries and make them more difficult to heal.
Here are a few things to keep in mind as you navigate your way back to the workplace:
- Follow up with your doctor’s appointments and get an accurate doctor’s note outlining any limitations for your return. Insurance companies often try to find loopholes and argue that you weren’t injured if you miss appointments. Going for appointments shows them that you are committed to your recovery.
- Don’t go back before you’re truly ready. Your health should always be your top priority. If your doctor allows you to return to work, try not to push yourself too hard. Communicate your limits with your supervisor or boss so you don’t end up straining.
- If you experience any symptoms upon returning to work, document them, as this could be used as evidence if you need to file a claim later on. Symptoms can include both physical and psychological complications. This information will help your doctors in treatment and also help build up your personal injury case.
- And lastly, it is always a good idea to contact a personal injury attorney after an accident, even if you’re not planning on pursuing legal action. They can offer guidance and support as you navigate this difficult time.
Contact a Personal Injury Attorney in Los Angeles
If you have been injured in an accident, it is important to speak with an experienced personal injury attorney as soon as possible. A lawyer can help you understand your rights and options and fight to get you the compensation you deserve. Contact LA Century Law today for a free consultation.
What happens if I lose my job due to a car accident in California?
You’ll need to contact a lawyer if you believe the termination was unfair. A lawyer may help you bring a wrongful termination case. They may also help you file a claim with an insurance company for compensation, among other benefits.
What is the average payout for a car accident in California?
The average payout is $21,000. However, compensation will vary depending on the severity of the accident and injuries and other factors such as lost wages and property damage.