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Do I pay taxes on the money I get from the insurance company?

Yucaipa, CA |

I am expecting that a car insurance co. will pay me for pain and suffering as a result of a car accident. I am self employed, am I required to report the check from the ins company? Thank you, David

Attorney Answers 7


  1. No. Any money received for personal injuries is tax free and not treated as income.

    DISCLAIMER: David J. McCormick is licensed to practice law in the State of Wisconsin and this answer is being provided for informational purposes only because the laws of your jurisdiction may differ. This answer based on general legal principles and is not intended for the purpose of providing specific legal advice or opinions. Under no circumstances does this answer constitute the establishment of an attorney-client relationship.


  2. While compensation for pain and suffering is not considered income, whether or not to report something on your tax return should be discussed with your CPA.


  3. If your settlement was based on wage losses, you may have to pay taxes on that portion. If your settlement was entirely pain and suffering, then it is not. Best of luck.

    This answer is provided by Manuel A. Juarez, Esq., El Abogado de Accidentes de Autos de California: 510-206-4492. El Abogado de Accidentes de Autos provides answers of a general context. These answers are not intended to form an attorney client relationship. El abogado de Accidentes de Autos y Lesiones Personales is licensed only in California. This information is good only in California and it is not to be taken as legal advice on car accidents, personal injury, divorce, bankruptcy or in any other type of situation. Esta respuesta es del Abogado de Accidentes de Autos y Lesiones Personales de Acidentes de carros, Manuel A. Juárez, 510-206-4492. Abogado Hispano de Accidentes, Divorcios, Abogado Latino de Accidentes, y Abogado de Acidentes de Oakland, Hayward, San Francisco, y California. Estas respuesta son solo para información general y no consisten en consejo legal sobre divorcios, mantención de esposas, mantención de hijos o bancarrotas. Las respuestas son comentarios legales que no forman una relación de abogado y cliente. Manuel Juarez, Esq., esta licenciado solo en el Estado de California.


  4. Under IRS regs, money received on account of bodily injury is not taxable. Check with your cpa if you were not injured.

    This response does not create a lawyer client relationship. Each case is determined on its specific facts and this reply is intended for a general audience and facts particular to your case may affect the answer. Consult with an attorney in person for specific answers to your questions.


  5. This is a question should be consulting with your current attorney handling your case along with your CPA or tax preparer.

    Attorneys generally should not be giving tax advice unless they are also certified tax consultants.


  6. As with all tax laws, there is a lot of gray area... but in general, and I mean very generally, a rule of thumb to follow is based on the idea that Uncle Sam (and his nieces and nephews - the states) like to tax income. Getting repaid for something that is "lost" is not income. Thus, recovery for pain/suffering is repayment for a loss - and not taxable. Wages are taxed so when wages get paid by a defendant, there is a tax due - they would have been income whether paid by the employer or the defendant.

    - Paul

    Paul J. Molinaro, M.D., J.D.
    Attorney at Law, Physician, Broker
    Fransen & Molinaro, LLP
    980 Montecito Drive, Suite 206
    Corona, CA 92879
    (951)520-9684
    www.fransenandmolinaro.com / www.888MDJDLAW.com
    "When you need a lawyer, call the Doctor... Call Paul J. Molinaro, M.D., J.D... Call (888)MDJDLAW."

    * This post and all others I make on Internet are for informational purposes only. None of the information or materials I post are legal advice. Nothing I post as comments, answers, or other communications should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation. This information is not intended to create, and receipt or viewing of this information does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship. While I try to be accurate, I do not guarantee accuracy.

    ** Fransen & Molinaro, LLP practices in the areas of personal injury, medical malpractice, and real estate law.

    Paul J. Molinaro, M.D., J.D. Attorney at Law, Physician, Broker Fransen&Molinaro;, LLP 980 Montecito Drive, Suite 206 Corona, CA 92879 (951)520-9684 www.fransenandmolinaro.com / www.888MDJDLAW.com "When you need a lawyer, call the Doctor... Call Paul J. Molinaro, M.D., J.D... Call (888)MDJDLAW." (Personal Injury and/or Medical Malpractice) ** This post and all others I make on Internet are for informational purposes only. None of the information or materials I post are legal advice. Nothing I post as comments, answers, or other communications should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation. This information is not intended to create, and receipt or viewing of this information does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship. While I try to be accurate, I do not guarantee accuracy.


  7. Keep in mind, the IRS will use the settlement documents to determine the type of income. The better it is broken up on there, the easier it is to substantiate to the IRS. If any portion is considered lost wages, etc. it will be taxable.

    Christopher Larson
    Insight Law

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