If you have been involved in an auto accident, and were injured due to the negligence of another party, you can file a lawsuit against the other driver's insurance company in order to obtain a fair settlement. However, before you go to court, you should present them with a demand letter.
What Is A Demand Letter?
Very few personal injury suits based on auto accidents actually end up making their way all the way to trial. Generally, the cases are settled out of court before a trail date is even set. In order to reach a settlement and avoid trail, a demand letter is particularly useful.
In your demand letter, you let the other driver's insurance company know exactly how much compensation you are trying to obtain.
Before you write your letter, you need to gather up all of your evidence to support the claims you plan on including in your letter. This will help you write a more detailed, and convincing, demand letter. Here is some of the evidence you should gather-up before you write your demand letter:
- Police Report
- Witness Statements
- Medical Records
- Lost Wage Documentation
You should sit down with a lawyer to write your letter. A lawyer who specializes in car accident cases will know how you should word your letter and what type of information you should include. They can provide you with valuable advice and feedback on your demand letter.
The first thing you want to do with your demand letter is establish who was at fault in the accident. Write down everything that you remember from before, during and after the accident, include such details as road condition and any defensive actions you took to avoid the accident. This is a good place to include information from the police report as well as witness statements. Make sure that is clear that you were not at fault, but the party in question is.
Detail Your Injuries
Next, you need to detail your injuries. Be sure to start with how you felt right after the accident happened. Detail all the medical care that you have had to receive because of the accident. Include the names of the facilities, the dates you were there, and the diagnosis and treatment you received. Be sure to use the medical terminology used by your doctor instead of laymen's turns.
Support your claims by attaching copies of your medical bills to the demand letter.
Be Sure To Include All Your Loses
If you injuries you sustained caused you to miss work, be sure to include that information as well. Even if you were able to use vacation or sick days, be sure to still include that information since you had to use those days in a way other than you intended. Be sure to include how much income you lost out on due to your injuries.
If you missed out on other things as well, include that in your letter. If you were not able to take a vacation, include any money you lost out on. If you were not able to participate in a family event, include that as well.
Make A Big Demand
At the end of your letter you need to make a monetary demand. Your lawyer can help you determine what amount you should ask for. It is important to remember that you are providing the first number in a negotiation process, so make it big so you have room to negotiate.
A well-crafted demand letter can save you the expense and time of going through a trail. Be sure to provide as many details as possible; this will help the other party determine how much to offer you. Contact professionals like Fonvielle, Lewis, Foote & Messer for more information.