What You Should Know About Personal Injury Demand Letters
The demand letter notifies the at-fault party’s insurance company of your demands for compensation for your injuries. The letter explains why you are seeking compensation, provides evidence to back up your assertions about the other party’s liability and details the compensation you are seeking.
The New Jersey personal injury lawyers with Lynch Law Firm, PC have drafted countless demand letters and successfully recovered millions in compensation for injury victims.* Below, we discuss the elements of a demand letter and explain why it is important to have an attorney helping you seek compensation.
Components of a Personal Injury Demand Letter
Although each case is different, most demand letters have the same structure.
The beginning of the demand letter informs the insurance company of the purpose of the letter, including who you are filing a claim against.
Presentation of Facts
Once your attorney has established who you are and why the letter is being written on your behalf, the next step is to provide further details on the facts of the claim. This part of the letter should discuss when, where and how the accident happened in as much detail as possible.
Description of Damages
The facts of how your injuries occurred are then followed by a description of your injuries and other damages you suffered in the accident, including economic and non-economic damages. This generally includes things like:
- Lost wages
- Medical bills
- Pain and suffering
- Property damage/loss
In this section of the letter, your attorney may also include how your life changed after the accident and how your injuries have affected your emotional well-being.
Proof of Liability
This part of the letter explains why you and your attorney believe the insured is the one responsible for your damages and why the insurance company should be the one to pay your damages. This section of the letter should include evidence to strengthen your argument that you believe the insured is liable for your injuries.
State Your Demands
The last section of the letter should state your demands, such as monetary compensation, and when those demands should be met. The letter should also state what may happen if your demands are not met, such as the filing of a lawsuit.
What Happens After Sending the Demand Letter?
In most cases, the insurance company replies to the letter with a counteroffer which kicks off the negotiation process.
However, depending on the circumstances of your claim, the insurance company may ignore your letter for a time, causing a delay in the negotiation process. This is a common tactic used by insurers to make injury victims desperate for relief and therefore, accept the first settlement offer which is usually well below the true value of a claim.
What if the Insurance Company Refuses my Demands?
Whether the insurance company is ignoring your demand letter or flat out refuses to pay for your damages by claiming they are not liable for your injuries, our attorneys are prepared to help you fight back by filing a lawsuit.
While going to court may seem daunting, you should know that most injury claims are settled out of court even if a lawsuit is filed. The purpose of filing a lawsuit when your demands in your letter are not met is to show the insurance company you are serious about your allegations and have the evidence to support your claims.
Generally, once the insurance company faces the possibility of a trial, it is more inclined to make a better offer. Insurers would like to avoid going to court because the jury could award much more than an insurance company may pay in a settlement.
Call an Experienced Today
Lynch Law Firm, PC is prepared to help you seek full compensation for your injuries. Our attorneys have decades of experience dealing with insurance companies and obtaining favorable settlements for our clients.
We do not charge you anything up front and only get paid if you do, so there is no risk to you.
Call today for a free consultation: (800) 518-0508