CAN I COLLECT LOST WAGES IF I AM NOT CURRENTLY WORKING? – AUTO ACCIDENT BENFITS
The No-Fault Act normally requires your insurance company to pay lost wages only for work you “would have performed” but for the injury. As a result, the loss of the capacity to work is not usually compensated as a first-party benefit, unless it results in an actual loss of earnings. There is one exception to this rule: Anyone who is “temporarily unemployed” at the time of the injury may have the right to collect wage loss benefits based upon his or her last month of full-time employment.
It is clear that laid-off or striking workers can collect wage loss benefits during their disability period: the legislature specifically mentioned them in defining temporary unemployment. On the other hand, a worker who suffers a second disabling illness or injury probably cannot college wage loss benefits, because the Michigan Supreme Court does not consider such a person to be “temporarily unemployed.”
If you have a history of gainful employment, or if you were actively seeking work at the time you were disabled you may be entitled to first-party wage loss benefits. You should make a claim for lost wages based on your last full-time job or your anticipated job and consult a lawyer.
As of this writing, the survivors of a temporarily unemployed person who is killed in a car accident cannot collect lost wages from his or her insurer based on this provision. Because there is no logical reason for this distinction, it is possible that this rule will change.
KRUPP LAW OFFICES PC
GRAND RAPIDS AUTO ACCIDENT ATTORNEYS
161 Ottawa NW Suite 404
Grand Rapids MI 49503
616-459-6636 or [email protected]
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