Sometimes, getting compensation for your injuries can be as easy as writing a strong and convincing demand letter.
Here are some tips to help you write a powerful personal injury demand letter:
1. Gather All Your Facts
Before you write anything down, make sure you’ve gone to a doctor and had all your injuries diagnosed. Keep and gather any doctor’s notes and medical invoices. Get pay stubs if you missed any days of work and lost wages. If there was also other damage to your car, get an estimate of the damages or any receipts for repairs.
You want to make sure you’re demanding enough money to compensate you for all your injuries, and you want to have enough evidence to back up your demands.
2. Present Your Best Arguments
A demand letter opens the negotiation process. So, you want to have the high ground in the negotiation by presenting your claim in the most favorable way to you as possible.
Lay out your arguments for why the other party is liable. List out the injuries your suffered, the medical treatments you had, the income you lost, and any other damages you may have suffered. Point out any weaknesses you may see in the other side’s case.
3. Ignore the Weaknesses in Your Case
Don’t do the insurance company’s job and point out weaknesses in your case for them. It’s up to the insurance adjuster to spot any weaknesses and bring it up in the negotiation process. You do not have to do so.
4. Feel Free to Highball
Don’t write a demand letter without making a demand. Also, don’t be afraid to throw out a number that you may think is too high. Remember this is a negotiation. If your demand is too high, the insurance company will offer a lower number, and the two of you can go back and forth. If you demand a low amount, chances are the insurance company will offer an even lower number, and you won’t get anywhere near enough to fully compensate you.
5. Don’t Sound Desperate
With high medical bills and lost wages, you probably need your money fast. But, don’t sound desperate for a quick settlement in your demand letter. Insurance companies want to avoid trial as much as you do. However, if they know you’re desperately afraid to go to trial or need money fast, they may take advantage of that and offer you a low settlement amount.
Does this sound like too much work? Consult with an experienced personal injury attorney instead to have a lawyer write your demand letter for you.
- Have an injury claim? Get your claim reviewed for free. (Consumer Injury)
- 5 Tips for a Writing Flawless Demand Letter (FindLaw’s Greedy Associates)
- Ten Tips for Writing an Effective Demand Letter (FindLaw)
- 3 Ways to Get Compensation For An Injury Without Suing (FindLaw’s Injured)