If Icannot work because my child was hit by the school bus and is scared to ride it, canI claim unearned income in the insurance claim?

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If Icannot work because my child was hit by the school bus and is scared to ride it, canI claim unearned income in the insurance claim?

I was going to go back to work when my child started kindergarten this year but 2 weeks into school the school bus hit her one morning and now she will not get back on the bus. Now Ihave to take her and pick her up from school every day which has become a problem with trying to find work. Can I claim unearned income because of this?

Asked on March 13, 2012 under Personal Injury, Georgia

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

It is very unlikely you can do this; the is a doctrine in law which requires parties to mitigate--or minimize--their damages or losses. If you had a job and gave it up to drive your child to/from school, that would not be mitigating your losses, since there are less costly ways--having a neighbor or family member drive her; hiring someone to drive her; taking her to counseling to get  over fear of school buses, just to name a few options--to deal with the situation. Since you would have increased, rather than mitigated, the cost to you, by going with the more costly option, you could not recover the lost income.

And if you don't currently have a job, you can't show that your child's fear or phobia is the reason you can't find work--it could be due to a tight labor market and high unemployment; it could be because your skills and experience are out of date; etc.--and without being able to show a causal link,  you cannot receive compensation. (Wrongful acts must cause a loss to allow recovery.) That is in addition to the failure to mitigate issue discussed above.


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