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What Is A Demand Letter In A Florida Personal Injury Case?

By Team at Zimmet & Zimmet, In Personal injury, 0 Comments

Daytona Beach injury lawyer drafting a demand letter for a client

If you're considering filing a personal injury case in Florida, you need to know what a demand letter is and how to write one.

There are many ins and outs of a Florida personal injury case. From filing an insurance claim to obtaining all the compensation that’s owed to you, there’s no shortage of things to do, questions to answer, and challenges to overcome. As one of the first steps in filing a personal injury claim, you should become familiar with what a demand letter is and how to write one with the help of an experienced injury attorney in Florida.

What is a demand letter?

It’s not good enough to understand what a demand letter can do for you. You must also know how to write it, what to include, and the steps you can take to improve your chance of a positive reply.

The first thing you must do is decide what to include in your demand letter. Generally, you want to touch on the following details in a concise manner:

  • The facts of the case, such as where it occurred and who was involved.
  • The amount of the damages, including but not limited to medical care, lost wages, and property damage. 
  • The amount of compensation you’re seeking. Be clear as to what you hope to settle the claim for. 

There are two things you want to avoid with your demand letter:

  1. Coming across like you’re doing nothing more than money-seeking. This is often the case if you ask for more compensation than you deserve.
  2. Exaggerating your injuries. Your medical records will back up your injury claim. You don’t have to go into detail in your demand letter.

Now that you know what to include and what to leave out, it’s time to sit down and write the demand letter. Rather than do it yourself, hire an experienced and knowledgeable Daytona Beach personal injury lawyer to manage this task. 

Here’s why you should work with an attorney on this:

  • They know what to say and what not to say.
  • They know how to phrase the letter to improve your odds of success. 
  • They may have an existing relationship with the insurance company. 
  • They know how to “speak the language.”

Yes, you can write your own demand letter. However, if you go down this path and make a mistake, it’ll slow you down and potentially harm your ability to receive all the compensation you may be entitled to.

What happens after your lawyer sends a demand letter

counteroffer in response to a demand letter
Your demand letter may receive a counter offer from the insurance company which your Daytona Beach injury attorney can review with you.

There are three possible outcomes from sending a demand letter:

  1. The demand is accepted: This is what you’re hoping for. It means that the other party accepts your demands and is willing to make payment. 
  2. A counter-offer is made: The other party doesn’t agree to your demands, but doesn’t refuse them either. They make a counter-offer, thus giving you something to think about. You don’t have to agree, but at least you’re at the phase where negotiations seem possible.
  3. The demand is refused: This is the worst case scenario, as the other party is not willing to hear you out. A refusal may lead you to file a lawsuit. 

How long does it take to get a response?

There are no laws in Florida outlining how long an insurance company has to respond to a demand letter. This varies greatly and is based on factors such as:

  • The size of the claim: Generally, the larger the claim the longer it takes to receive a response. 
  • The size of the insurance company: In many cases, larger companies are able to move faster as they may have resources.
  • Communication: If your legal team has already been in touch with the insurance company, it’s more likely that you’ll receive a fast response.

Ready to send a demand letter? Contact our Daytona Beach injury attorneys today

If the time has come to send a demand letter to an insurance company, the experienced injury attorneys at Zimmet & Zimmet are ready and willing to help. We have more than 40 years of experience managing all types of personal injury cases across Florida. Contact us online or give us a call today to schedule a consultation.

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