Van Driver Accident: Solicitor sets out how to claim compensation for lost income & personal injury
Van driver accident victim finds out in an online question and answer how to claim for lost income when employer is only paying SSP following a collision with a car; how to claim for personal injury; the records you should keep; evidence to support lost income; compensation payouts for injury and accessing specialist solicitor free online assistance.
Van Driver Accident Question
I’m a van driver and on my way back to the yard Friday around 5/5:15 when coming towards a roundabout. The traffic was very slow and heavy, stop start for over a mile. Then the car behind me smashed into the back of the van. His whole bonnet was under the back of the van…. the van was a flatbed ford and he hit me as I was stopped, with a bang.
Police were called and only whiplash injuries thankfully.
Clearly it was definitely the fault of the car behind me.
Question: I’m off work with whiplash injuries…I have informed work that I will need another week off at the moment, as I have been off this week and still aching through my neck to back. I have been told by the doctors not to drive for now and to go for walks to keep mobile.
Where do I stand as I will only receive SSP from work?
Road Accident Solicitor Response
There are two issues when it comes to lost income:
1. Pay you should receive from your employer
What you should be paid by your employer when you are absent from work is determined by your contract of employment – some are entitled to full pay for a period and others SSP only. You will need to look at the wording of your employment contract to determine your entitlement.
2. Lost income as part of a van driver accident personal injury claim
The second relates to what you can claim in personal injury compensation for your van driver accident – at present this seems to be a whiplash neck injury and thoracic spine and/or lower back injury. You should however keep a diary of your symptoms as it may be that there are other injuries that you are experiencing as the days and weeks pass. You should also be careful to distinguish as to the different parts of your spine that are in pain (cervical/neck, thoracic/mid spine and lumbar/lower back) together with any other secondary symptoms such as headaches, shoulder pain, sensations in the fingers or toes, etc.
When you make a personal injury claim you are claiming primarily two things: pain & suffering & loss of amenity for the injuries you have suffered (here your whiplash injury) known as general damages and financial loss and expense (including lost income) known as special damages – see our article financial loss and expense in a road accident.
If you only receive SSP then your claim against the car driver that hit you (and the motor insurer) would therefore also include your net lost income. This loss however must be proven as the burden of proof is on the Claimant (namely you).
The actual fact that you were not paid would be supported by pay slips. Typically, 13 weeks prior to the accident showing your average pay with confirmation from your employer and subsequent pay slips showing absence from work and SSP payments only.
It may not however be enough to show that that you were not paid during your absence from work – there should also be evidence on your medical notes that you were signed off from work. In addition, as part of your claim your solicitor would send you to an independent medical expert (primarily for the purpose of describing your spinal injuries) who should also comment on the reasonableness of your absent from work given the nature of your injuries and your medical notes.
With these two pieces of evidence – there is a good chance that your full lost income could be recovered.
If liability is accepted early on by the driver’s at fault insurer – it may also be possible to receive an interim payment whilst your claim is waiting to conclude.
Making A Van Driver Compensation Claim
If you would like to discuss your whiplash claim with a specialist solicitor directly or commence a van driver accident claim online – please see our free road accident solicitor legal help options.