Demand Letters for Personal Injuries

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There are several ways that you can approach an insurance company to request money for your case, one of which includes a demand letter for a personal injury. Demand letters will lay out the dispute between you and the other party.

You can file a personal injury claim, which is a more informal way to open your case. You could also file a more formal demand letter, which could indicate the start of a more serious legal process. Your Aiken personal injury lawyer knows when it is best to file a claim or send a demand letter. Then, they will draft the necessary documents for you and submit them on your behalf.

The Law Office of Taylor S. Brathwaite helps injured clients as they seek financial compensation for personal injuries in Aiken, SC. Contact our firm to begin your case with a free evaluation.

The Purpose of a Demand Letter

If you were injured in a car accident, a demand letter would explain exactly why the insurance company has a legal obligation to pay you. Then, it would demand a certain amount of compensation for your injuries.

The reason why it is called a demand letter is ultimately because you are making a demand.

There is a dispute between you and the insurance company’s policyholder. When an insurance company sees a demand letter, they have a good idea of your intentions and what you may be prepared to do in your case.

What Is in a Demand Letter?

A demand letter will usually include the following:

  • Some brief details of the case
  • The parties who were involved
  • The basis of your entitlement to compensation
  • The amount of compensation you are demanding

The demand letter does not have to be a full legal brief (nor should it be). While it should be concise, it should also be strong enough to show the insurance company that you have a persuasive case.

Why Your Attorney Would Send a Demand Letter

A demand letter is a much more formal document than an insurance claim.

When a demand letter is signed by a lawyer, the insurance company gets a clear picture of exactly what your situation is.

Even though a lawyer may help prepare your claim, a demand letter is a surefire sign that you have “lawyered up,” and you are ready to fight. Essentially, it means that they can either pay you, or litigation can begin.

Demand letters often are written in more high-stakes cases, or when you know that you will have difficulty with the insurance company. They are a formal way of laying out the issue for the insurance company. If you have a very strong case for compensation, you may consider sending a demand letter.

A well-written demand letter can save you time in the future because you could have less back-and-forth interaction with the insurance company.

It is a documented fact that a large majority of personal injury cases will settle before they reach a trial. The key is for you to know how to gain the most leverage in the settlement process.

Two things frighten an insurance company:

  • Having to spend a lot of money to defend itself in court
  • The prospect of facing a jury

Sending a demand letter is a strong sign to the insurance company that you have the means to make the insurance company face both prospects. Less complex or potentially hostile cases could be resolved by other means, but you should go with a demand letter when you think that there is a high chance of litigation. It is part of your positioning in the legal process.

Do Not Try to Write a Demand Letter on Your Own

Many online websites think that they can give you a “template” that you can use to write your own demand letter. It is a bad idea to write and send a demand letter on your own for the following reasons:

  • When it comes to a demand letter, there is no such thing as a template. Everything depends on the specifics of your case.
  • Your demand letter would need to include some proof of liability and your damages to be effective.

Part of what makes a demand letter effective is the lawyer’s signature because it implies that you have legal options if the insurance company will not give you what you want. The insurance company needs to have a measure of fear to make them do what is right. They will never do that on their own, out of the desire to do right.

How Soon You May Expect a Settlement After a Demand Letter

The demand letter usually kicks off a lengthy legal process of negotiation between you and the insurance company. When you send a demand letter, it launches a more “legalistic” claims process, so the insurance company is going to take more time to respond than if you filed a claim. It could take them months for them to even respond in the first place.

The insurance company would first need to determine whether to accept liability in your case.

Then, they would make an initial settlement offer. Chances are that this settlement offer is just a marker in the negotiations.

You would need to negotiate for many months. Thus, you should not expect the demand letter to result in an immediate settlement. You just should expect it to be the first step in what is to come in your case. The crucial thing is to remain patient while your lawyer fights for you to get the money you deserve.

Contact a Personal Injury Lawyer in Aiken, SC Today

To learn more about demand letters for personal injuries, and other aspects of the legal process, contact TSB Injury Law. We can review your case and go over your legal options. The first step is to contact us to schedule a free initial consultation. You can reach us through our website or call us today at (803) 220-0000. We will not ask you to pay us upfront or anything at all unless you win your case.


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