Fort Wayne Indiana Personal Injury Lawyer and Attorney Blog

What is Loss of Earning Capacity in a Wrongful Death Case?

By Jack H. FarnbauchMay 22, 2020

If you find yourself in the unfortunate circumstance of a wrongful death case, it is emotionally devastating. If the person who passed was the primary source of your family’s income, you will experience current and future income loss. This is known as loss of earning capacity. 

In a wrongful death claim, the court will look at what the plaintiff’s ability to earn was and how their death affected what they would have potentially provided for their dependents. It is the plaintiff’s job to prove the impairment of earnings and future loss. Sufficient documentation (tax returns, paycheck stubs, etc.) will need to be provided to the court along with testimony from an expert witness to further explain the loss. 

Employment skills, abilities, talents, experience and more will be taken into consideration by an expert witness while assessing the loss of earning claim. An expert witness will identify the current market values of the deceased’s skills and determine how much future income a family will lose because of the death. Other factors, such as the victim’s health, life expectancy, occupation, etc., will also be considered. 

Under special circumstances, an accountant may be hired to serve as an expert witness to determine loss of earning capacity. An accountant can review profit and loss of the deceased’s company, if self-employed. 

Contact Sweeney Law Firm for more information.