Accidents often happen when you least expect them. Unfortunately, this fact gives you no time to plan ahead or to get your finances in order beforehand. So, when an accident occurs, you may worry about how to continue to care for your family financially when you are not working. The good news is that there are several things you can do to protect your family during this time and to keep your finances in check.
If your accident occurred at work, you may be eligible for workers’ compensation, despite who’s at fault. In most cases, the employer must provide some type of financial support to any employee injured on the job. For example, an employer may have to cover medical bills, lost wages and some other out-of-pocket expenses. It’s vital that you contact your employer as soon as possible to file a workers’ compensation claim because many states have strict deadlines for when you can file this type of claim.
Personal Injury Claim
If your injury is due to another party’s negligence, you may be able to file a personal injury claim. For example, if you slip and fall on a wet floor at the grocery store, you may be able to file a personal injury claim against the store. There are different types of personal injury claims that you can look at to determine if your situation makes you eligible to pursue this avenue for the financial relief you need for you and your family. You can also seek out professional advice from a personal injury attorney, who can handle the claim process for you.
Many employers offer some form of short, or even long-term, disability. In addition, most insurance companies offer private short-term disability insurance policies. You must, however, have the policy in place prior to your accident. Short-term disability will pay a portion of your lost wages if you are unable to work due to an accident. It’s important to read your specific policy to understand the details, such as the length of disability pay, amount of payment and how to file a claim.
Readjust Family Budget
Whether you plan to be off work after an accident for a few weeks or a few months, it’s critical that you take action immediately. Review the family budget and look for spending categories you can cut or reduce until you go back to work. For example, you may be able to cancel some online subscriptions or cut back on your entertainment budget. If you are off work for several months, be sure to contact your various lenders to see if you qualify for hardship relief. Taking early action can prevent a financial crisis later.
If you were injured in an accident, your first step is to take care of yourself. Once you receive medical attention, it’s crucial that you take steps to secure your family’s financial future. Keep in mind that workers’ compensation, personal injury and short-term disability claims all have strict filing deadlines. So, be sure to take quick action to secure the financial support you need to protect your family.