What are my rights to lost wages regarding an auto accident?

UPDATED: Aug 5, 2013

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What are my rights to lost wages regarding an auto accident?

I was involved in an accident whereby riding southbound from a sidewalk onto a T-shaped intersection with the intent of getting to the sidewalk on the opposite side. As I was crossing the road in the middle to get to the other side of the sidewalk, a vehicle came to a rolling stop and struck me on my left side rendering the bike unusable until it was fixed 3 weeks later by my own dime. I am now asking the insurance company for $700 for lost wages as I was unable to get to my part-time job which is located about an hour away by bike as well as complete repairs to the bike. The insurance company is refusing to pay the lost wages because of transportation saying that I could take the bus which I couldn’t afford. Am I right?

Asked on August 5, 2013 under Accident Law, New York


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

You are wrong, unfortunately. Your wages were not lost due to the accident; they were lost due to your refusal to take the bus. Even if you say the reason was you could not afford it, that does still not make it other person's fault--he/she is not responsible for your economic situation, and taking the bus is generally a viable option. Note that if you had taken the bus, you could have recoved the cost of the bus fare. (And consider: you could have walked, taking an extra 1/2 to 1 hour; you could have begged rides from friends or co-workers...there were other options to get to work.)

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