If you have been involved in an Atlanta car accident, you may be entitled to compensatory damages. However, you will have to undergo the daunting task of negotiating with an insurer in order to recover these damages. A good Atlanta car accident lawyer can make the process easier for you.
When filing a personal injury claim for damages, a demand letter is of vital importance. This is like an opening statement from you when interacting with an insurance company. If the opening statement is firm and well-put, it gives the insurer an impression that you know what you are about. If the letter is disorganized, poorly drafted, and lacking in important facts, the insurance agent on the other end will instantly detect a weakness and try to use it against you.
For this reason, it is immensely important to draft a good demand letter before you send it to the insurance company. Here are some handy tips to guide you in that direction.
Clearly Mention the Liable Party
When you are seeking damages from an at-fault party, it is important to clearly mention and name this party in the demand letter. This helps in establishing formal liability. You should also cite your version of the crash, the relevant facts, witness statements, as well as supporting documents such as police reports to back your claim of liability.
Detail Your Injuries
A portion of your demand letter must be dedicated to the injuries caused by the crash. In this portion, you must note the impact of these injuries at length. Make sure you first detail the nature, type, and severity of these injuries. Where possible, it is best to use technical, medical terms to denote your injuries.
You must also mention the pain, suffering, discomfort, social embarrassment, and other effects of your injuries. If your injuries prevented you from attending a dear one’s ceremony or from going to your child’s graduation, make sure you note these crucial losses in your letter. These will help establish your claim for both economic and non-economic damages.
Note the Treatments and Associated Costs
Once you have detailed the injuries, it is time to shed some light on various treatments you received for your injuries. These treatments may be from a single medical provider or from multiple providers, depending on the length and nature of your treatment. When noting the treatments, it is important to also provide details of the fees or expenses incurred as a result of these treatments.
Do Not Accept Any Responsibility
If your own negligence contributed to an accident, that is a matter for subsequent debate. At the time of writing a demand letter, do not accept any responsibility. If you do, the insurance company will use Georgia’s comparative negligence principle to argue and bring down your amount of compensation to a minimum. So when writing the letter, make sure you say that you were not at fault for causing the accident. If any facts show otherwise, the insurance company will surely let you know in its response.
Talk About Lost Income
Car crash injuries can force you to take time away from work. This results in lost wages which you can recover in a car crash claim. When writing a demand letter, include details of your lost wages. You can ask your employer to provide a formal letter noting your time away due to injuries and the wages lost as a result. In your letter, you can refer to this letter.
Demand a Larger Amount
If you believe your car crash losses are worth $25,000, it is best to claim $40,000 to $50,000 in your demand letter. This is because it is always a good idea to demand a specific amount and make sure this amount is significantly higher than what you actually want to recoup. Once you send the demand letter, a lot of back-and-forth negotiations are expected. A higher initial demand allows you space to negotiate and eventually come down to reach an agreement.
Why Hire an Atlanta Car Accident Lawyer?
As noted above, drafting a demand letter is an important step in the car crash claim process. You want to make sure this letter is effective. Here at Ted Greve & Associates, we work with you to draft a demand letter that is sure to start the process in your favor. Our ultimate aim is to help you secure the maximum amount of compensation for your losses. Call us today to discuss your Atlanta crash claim with our lawyers.