In a personal injury case, you want the person’s insurance company at fault to compensate you. Some cases are settled outside the court, but if this is not possible, the plaintiff takes the matter to court. As the plaintiff, you may need to write a demand letter to demand the settlement. You must know that a demand letter is a critical document that can be used against you should the matter go to court. Therefore, it is crucial to be careful when writing one. We advise involving a lawyer from the Recovery Law Center to help you draft the letter.
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Essential Facts to Know Before Drafting the Letter
There are two crucial facts you should know as the accident victim.
A demand letter can be used against you in court. The insurance company might decide to use the statements in the letter against you should the case go to trial. Therefore, if they notice a fault, the compensation amount will be reduced by the percentage of the extent of responsibility. Therefore, letting an attorney write the demand letter is crucial to prevent costly mistakes.
A demand letter could mean the end of your claim. If the insurance company agrees to the amount you have stated in the letter, you will have to sign the agreement. This sign means the end of your claim and relieves the parties of the burden of the accident. Therefore, you cannot file a lawsuit or demand more money even when you later discover other damages or injuries.
The Contents of a Demand Letter
The purpose of a demand letter is to let the insurance company know how they will proceed with your claim. It convinces the company to pay you and maximizes the compensation value. If you do not know what you should include in the demand letter, leave the job to a lawyer. The professional will have the following things.
- An explanation of how the accident caused the injuries
- An illustration of how the other party is at fault
- A description of the injuries you incurred
- A detailed description of medical expenses, including medication, surgeries and therapy
- Accounting or lost wages, income and benefits
- An attachment of supporting documents of allegations and expenses
- The amount you want to be compensated
Why Hire a Lawyer to Draft the Letter?
As we have mentioned above, a demand letter can work against you. It also means the end of your claim if the insurance company agrees to the settlement. With a demand letter, here are the benefits you receive.
- It shows you are serious, and the company will agree to negotiation rather than dealing with a lawsuit.
- It also shows you are willing to solve the issue. Therefore, if you take the matter to court, the judiciary will see you made an effort to resolve the issue.
- The letter saves you a lot of time and money if you solve the matter outside the court.
Even if you need to pay a lawyer to draft the demand letter, it is a worthwhile step when you do not want to file a lawsuit. It will show your seriousness and help you get a fair settlement without involving the court.