Settlement Demand Letters: What They Are & How to Write/Send ThemSeptember 19, 2017
When it’s time to seek damages for accident-related injuries and losses, sending a well-written settlement demand letter to the insurance company can be an important first step.
A good demand letter may be a catalyst for negotiating a fair settlement, potentially expediting the resolution of a claim. A solid demand letter can also serve as an opportunity to organize and outline your case as you move forward.
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What Are Settlement Demand Letters?
As the name implies, a settlement demand letter is written correspondence that demands a settlement for the injuries and losses arising from some accident. Generally, this demand letter is sent to the insurance provider for the negligent party.
Example: You are hurt in a car accident caused by a drunk driver. In the initial phase of your claim, you can send a settlement demand letter to the drunk driver’s auto insurance provider, formally requesting a specific amount of compensation for the damage, injuries, losses, and suffering you sustained from the accident.
How to Write & Send a Settlement Demand Letter: Essential Tips & Details
A strong settlement demand letter should clearly, formally articulate details regarding:
- The accident or incident – Concisely state the facts of the event at the center of the claim. Include details about the date, time, and location of the incident, as well as the involved parties, what occurred, and who is liable for the resulting accident and injuries.
- The impacts of the incident – Explain the precise scope of the injuries, damage, losses, and/or suffering incurred due to the accident or incident. These impacts can include both past losses (like previous medical bills and past lost wages), as well as projected future losses (like future medical expenses and future lost earnings).
- An acceptable settlement award – This is the “demand” aspect of the letter. Clearly state a specific amount of compensation you are demanding for your claim, and provide a deadline for payment. A lawyer can help you figure out what your claim is worth and how to properly phrase this aspect of the demand letter.
- The alternative action – Explain what action you will take if the insurance company fails to meet your demand. Typically, this alternative action is to file a lawsuit and litigate the claim.
When writing and/or sending a settlement demand letter, it is also important to:
- Keep the language polite, formal, and professional. While the language can and should be firm, it should not be needlessly insulting or disparaging.
- Make and keep copies of the demand letter.
- Send the letter via certified mail so you have documentation regarding when the letter was sent and received.
Given how complex and important a settlement demand letter can be, the help of an experienced attorney at the Amaro Law Firm can be invaluable when it’s time to write and send one of these letters.
Position Your Claim for Success: Contact a Houston Personal Injury Lawyer at the Amaro Law Firm
If you have been hurt by someone else’s negligence, you can turn to a Houston personal injury lawyer at the Amaro Law Firm for extraordinary advocacy and effective help pursuing financial recovery.
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