A demand letter is used by the injured party in a vehicle accident to request settlement on a claim. It is okay if you are still going through physical therapy, but necessary that you have recovered enough to return to work (or received certification that you cannot) and that you have completed all immediate medical procedures (such as having the stitches or casts removed) and completed any required prescription requirements.
The format for a demand letter is to start out using standard business letter style. Your name and address open the letter, placed at the upper right corner of the document, followed by the date of writing the letter, and the address (and adjuster name, if available) of the insurance company left justified. The first paragraph should include the date and basic events of the accident, including where and when the accident happened and the fault assigned by the police (including charges or tickets filed against the other driver).
The remainder of the demand letter should list your injuries, medical treatments you have received, and the final disposition of your injuries. List the damages to your vehicle, and the costs of repairs. Next, list any other expenses caused by the accident. This could include time off from work without pay, personal obligations that had to be canceled such as conferences or professional meetings, rental car costs and incidental costs such as concert tickets that had already been bought, but the event was missed due to injuries.
Attach a copy of all receipts, with identifying comments written on each one. Remember, you are making a legal case for damages owed to you, so be completely accurate and itemize the letter so make each part of the claim as clear as possible.
Here is a short sample of a demand letter:
Mr. John Doe
123 Mountain Dr.
Anycity, Yourstate, 99999
email@example.comÂ Phone: 123-555-9321
Friday, May 13, 2011
Adjusterâ€™s name (omit if you donâ€™t have this information)
Xyz Insurance Company
111 Oak St
Oakview, OK, 11111
Re: Claim #543-54443-12390
Insured: (The person whose insurance company your are contacting)
Dear Adjuster (replace with name if possible),
This letter of demand is in reference to the auto accident involving (at fault driver), and myself on December 10, 2010. In the accident, the rear door on the passenger side of my vehicle was struck by the front of Mr. Driverâ€™s truck when he failed to stop for a red traffic light. In the police report, Mr., Driver was found to be at fault, and charged with a moving violation as well as being given roadside sobriety tests which he passed. Property damage to my vehicle was assessed at $2954.17, and has been promptly paid by your company to the Wedabest Collision Company.
Both parties were wearing their seatbelts in the accident, but I suffered a dislocated right shoulder as well as damage to my left knee. I was transported to the hospital via ambulance, where X-rays were taken and medical provided. The cost for the ambulance was $585, and the total emergency rooms costs amounted to $1346.82. Please see the attached receipts for itemization of these costs.
My car was damaged beyond usability and I was forced to rent a vehicle for 7 days, for a total cost of $230. Towing my vehicle to a repair facility cost an additional $160. Receipts for both costs are included.
Due to my injuries, I was not able to return to work for 14 days, resulting in lost wages in the amount of $842, rounded down to the nearest dollar. A signed letter from my employer which lists the exact hourly wage and duties I was not able to perform is also included with this document.
Subsequent medical care has included one visit to my family doctor ($180), two visits to see specialists ($562), and the need for 4 prescriptions to treat infection, pain, and post-traumatic insomnia ($417). Physical therapy required only one visit ($225) and an ongoing home exercise program. No permanent damages are expected, but I am no longer unable to participate in charity runs for which I have been an active member for 10 years, resulting in additional therapy and medication for depression ($310).
I am not seeking restitution for pain and suffering outside of settlement for the costs of treatment and medication listed herein. I feel that it would be in my best interest to put this incident behind me as soon as possible, and request your immediate payment for the amount listed in this document ($4272.82). Please contact me immediately if additional information is required to settle this case.