Gig Workers: Recovering Lost Income following an Auto Accident

November 10, 2020 Accident

Gig Workers: Recovering Lost Income following an Auto Accident

If you are a gig worker, like a Lyft driver or a Postmates worker, you can recover any and all damages that you have suffered if you are the victim of a Louisiana car accident. This includes lost income during any “down time” while you are healing and waiting for your vehicle to be repaired.

Proving lost income for gig workers is a bit more complicated than for workers with traditional paychecks. It can be done, however, and you have a right under Louisiana law to recover any lost wages and income that you can prove. This is why it is important to retain experienced and battle-tested Louisiana auto accident attorneys — like the ones at Mansfield, Melancon, Cranmer & Dick LLC.

In simple terms, with traditional employees, proof of lost wages/income is accomplished by providing two types of evidence:

  • Copies of paychecks — business records showing pay and benefits
  • A statement or certification from an employer

Typically, this is the type of evidence that an insurance carrier needs to process an accident claim and, if your case must be filed in a Louisiana court, this is the type of evidence that a judge and jury will expect. From this evidence, the victim of a car accident demonstrates that he or she was employed and proves how much he or she was making per pay period. This is the evidentiary foundation for a lost wages claim.

For gig workers, there are three types of evidence instead of two. Like a traditional worker, a gig worker must prove that he or she actually had gig employment and must show the amount earned per pay period. Thus, a gig worker must provide something like:

  • Copies of earning statements from the gig online platform or bank statements showing deposits or other reliable records showing revenue
  • Records showing enrollment with and work for the relevant online gig employer

However, a third type of evidence is generally needed because, for most gig workers, the money earned is not generally “pure” income. Gig workers often have expenses that are necessary for generating revenue. A Lyft driver, for example, must buy fuel for the vehicle. Thus, gig workers typically need to provide records or other evidence with respect to normal operating expenses. Such expenses might include fuel, insurance, monthly car payments or rental charges, utility costs, phone and internet services, etc. As an example, if the revenue statements for a hypothetical Lyft driver shows $500 a week, but there are $100 a week in expenses, then $400 a week is the lost income that can be recovered as potential damages caused by the accident.

As can be seen, proving lost wages and/or lost earnings for gig workers is more complex than with traditional workers. The best solution is to retain proven Louisiana car accident and personal injury lawyers who know how to gather and present the right evidence.

Our Experienced Attorneys can Help: Call Today

If you have been injured in a Louisiana automobile crash, contact the Louisiana car accident attorneys at Mansfield, Melancon, Cranmer & Dick LLC. We have proven experience with many types of car accidents and personal injury cases. Contact us by calling one of our offices: New Orleans at (504) 500-1108, Baton Rouge at (225) 612-0800, or Lafayette at (337) 409-0003. You can also request a free consultation by using our “Contact Us” page.