3 reasons a serious injury can limit someone’s earning potential

On Behalf of | Mar 28, 2024 | Personal Injury |

Car crashes, dangerous products and a host of other scenarios could lead to severe or catastrophic injuries. The long-term impact that an injury has is what leads to its classification as a catastrophic health issue. Brain injuries, limb loss and spinal cord injuries are among the most common catastrophic injuries experienced in the United States. Obviously, major medical issues create medical expenses. People require treatment ranging from surgery to rehabilitation after an injury.

Sometimes, there can be secondary financial consequences after a major injury. A catastrophic injury could have a lasting negative impact on someone’s earning potential.

By forcing time away from work

Immediately after someone develops a major medical issue, they may require emergency medicine care. Such treatment is often quite costly. They may also end up away from work for several weeks as they recover from their initial injury. Workers may experience ongoing wage losses due to attendance issues if they must have regular appointments with physicians or rehabilitation specialists. Catastrophic injuries often require ongoing care and could therefore take someone away from their work regularly for the rest of their lives.

By creating functional limitations

Catastrophic injuries significantly affect what job tasks an individual can perform. Many people with catastrophic injuries have to leave well-paid blue-collar professions and may require accommodations to continue working. Someone’s functional limitations can substantially reduce their current earning potential. Particularly for those who work in physically-demanding jobs, a major injury might force them to move into lower-paid work.

By altering their mental health

Catastrophic injuries often produce chronic pain in addition to changing someone’s abilities. There is a strong association between severe injury and increased risk for mental health challenges. Anxiety and depression, as well as post-traumatic stress disorder, are common issues for those adjusting to life with catastrophic injuries. Those mental health issues could limit someone’s ability to retain their job or continue developing their career as they previously intended to do.

Those trying to handle insurance negotiations or preparing for a personal injury lawsuit need to have a realistic idea of what their injuries may cost them. Quantifying the career impacts that an injury could have may benefit those preparing to seek compensation.