Thursday, June 23, 2011

Can An Insurance Co. Deduct Taxes From Your Ohio Auto Accident Lost Wage Claim?

So you want to handle your own personal injury case with the at fault party's insurance company? If you were injured in an Ohio auto collision and missed considerable time from work, it stands to reason that you have a right to recover for your lost wages. But what is the measure of your lost wage claim: your gross lost wages, or your net lost wages after taxes are withheld?

Insurance companies are famous for arguing that they are only obligated to pay your net lost wages, which of course means a 30% discount in many instances.

Insurance companies are dead wrong on this issue. Under Ohio law, a jury is instructed to consider the gross income of the injured person or decedent (in the event of a wrongful death) and not the net income after taxes and deductions.

That has been the law of Ohio for years now. But that does not stop insurance companies and adjusters from insisting, time and time again, that they are only responsible for paying an injured person's net wages. Why do they argue this in the face of clear Ohio law prohibiting this argument? Because they can, particularly if they are dealing with a person (or even an attorney) who is ignorant of Ohio law.

Remember, their goal is not "fairness" to you as the injured person. Instead, their goal is to close your claim as soon as possible and pay as little as they can get away with paying. Doesn't make them evil, but it doesn't mean you have to roll over and take it because they spout this nonsense or tell you that their "company policy" prohibits paying the gross amount...

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