In Wisconsin, future loss of earning capacity is an element of damages an injured person may recover in a personal injury claim. In addition to money for pain and suffering and medical bills, and past wage loss, the jury is asked what sum of money will fairly and reasonably compensate plaintiff for future loss of earning capacity. This occurs when someone has a permanent injury from an automobile accident or slip and fall, resulting in back surgery or neck surgery.
If the jury is satisfied that injured person has suffered a loss of future earning capacity as a result of the injuries sustained in the accident, the jury answers the question of what will be the difference between what person will reasonably be able to earn in the future in view of the injuries sustained and what he or she would have been able to earn had you not been injured.
If the injured person was the owner and operator of a business at the time of the accident, in determining his or her loss of future earning capacity, the jury must consider the character and size of the business, the capital and labor employed in the business, and the extent and quality of injured person’s services to the business, and the profits of the business.
While the injured person has the burden of establishing loss of future earning capacity, the evidence relating to this item need not be as exact or precise as evidence needed to support the findings as to other items of damage. The reason for this rule is that the concept of loss of future earning capacity requires that the jury consider factors which, by their very nature, do not admit of any precise or fixed rule. The jury is not required in determining the loss of future earning capacity to base its answer on evidence which is exact or precise but rather upon evidence which, under all of the circumstances of the case, reasonably supports a determination of damages.
In Milwaukee, Wisconsin McCormick Law Office attorneys get the best results for future loss of earning capacity claims by having the treating doctor or surgeon assign permanent work restrictions and having the a vocational specialist expert determine a loss of earning capacity, then have an economist project out the loss of earnings over a lifetime. These loss of earnings projections can be estimates, but they are honest and trustworthy future wage loss determinations based on the evidence. While we take great care in assembling quality proof to get the largest settlement value, we always respect the process and weigh that the cost of proving the case is affordable.