How to Write a Settlement Demand Letter in Florida
Bill Allen | September 1, 2021 | Personal Injury
You can generally seek compensation after most types of Florida accidents by filing an injury claim against the insurer for the negligent party who caused your accident. This includes slip and fall accidents, medical malpractice incidents, and more.
There are some exceptions. For example, Florida is currently a no-fault car insurance state. After a car accident in the Sunshine State, you must first file a claim to collect from your own insurance — even if someone else caused your crash. If you suffered “serious injuries,” you could file an additional claim against the negligent party’s insurance.
Filing a claim involves writing a settlement demand letter. This letter describes your accident, documents your damages, and outlines your demand for compensation.
The strength of your settlement demand letter can play a major role in recovering fair compensation after your accident. Keep the following tips in mind when drafting yours.
Know the Format
A proper settlement demand letter consists of several key sections. They include the following:
A settlement demand letter should begin with a header. In this section, include your name, address, and contact information.
The header should also include the insurance company’s address. A proper header will list the names of any other parties involved in the accident, along with their contact information.
Description of the Accident
Introduce your letter by identifying yourself and other parties involved in the accident (even if you already included this information in the header). You may also mention your age and occupation in this section.
Next, describe when, where, and how the accident in question occurred. You must be extremely careful when doing so. It’s best to keep your description broad. You want to avoid making any statements that can be interpreted as admissions of fault.
Description of Losses
Describe the injuries you sustained in the accident and the medical expenses you incurred. It’s also important to describe any related losses for which you are seeking compensation. For example, you may be seeking lost wages if your injuries prevented you from working.
Next, you should provide a legal analysis explaining why you are eligible for compensation. This part is complicated. It’s always smart to coordinate with an attorney when writing a settlement letter.
Demand for Compensation
This is the section of a settlement letter in which you demand compensation. It should be fairly specific, explaining in clear terms why you deserve a certain amount.
Settlement Letter Essential Tips
Knowing how to format a settlement letter will help you write a thorough and convincing demand.
Other tips to keep in mind when drafting your letter include:
- Remain calm. Your settlement letter should not be packed with emotion, even if your accident is an emotional subject for you. Keep your letter neutral and professional in tone.
- Consider including extra documentation with the settlement letter. This can include pictures of the accident scene, documentation of your medical bills and lost wages, witness statements, and any other documentation that strengthens your letter. However, you may want to consult with an attorney before including additional documents.
- Keep it short. While a settlement letter should be thorough, you want to avoid unnecessary fluff. Remember, including a single wrong detail could make it difficult to recover compensation. Keeping your letter short will help you avoid this trap.
You don’t have to write your own settlement demand letter. In fact, you probably shouldn’t. A personal injury attorney can write a settlement demand letter on your behalf. They’ll know how to draft a compelling letter that highlights your right to damages.
This is just one of many reasons you’re more likely to secure fair compensation if you seek representation from a lawyer after an accident in Florida.
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