Personal Injury Claims in Virginia: How to Draft a Demand Letter

If you were hurt in an accident, you need financial compensation to pay your bills and support the people you care about most. In Virginia, you can hold the at-fault party liable through a personal injury claim. The overwhelming majority of personal injury cases are settled outside of litigation. 

This raises an important question: How do you get a personal injury settlement after an accident? Sending a well-drafted demand letter is often one of the first steps in the process. Here, our Winchester personal injury attorney discusses the key things to know about demand letters. 

What is a Demand Letter in a Virginia Personal Injury Case?

A demand letter is a formal request (demand) for compensation. It is used in a wide variety of legal cases, including in personal injury claims. A demand letter serves to notify the defendant/insurer of your case, describe the accident, explain their liability, and request a specific amount of compensation to resolve the matter. When it is drafted the right way, a personal injury demand letter can often lead to good faith, productive settlement negotiations. 

The Dos and Don’ts of Personal Injury Demand Letters

Demand letters matter. When utilized properly, they can help move a personal injury case towards settlement. When done poorly, a demand letter can shut down settlement negotiations or even undermine your case. Here are five things a personal injury demand letter should do and three things a personal injury demand letter should not do: 

  • Do: Provide a comprehensive description of the accident and the injuries that you suffered. 
  • Do: Explain why the defendant/insurer bears legal liability for the accident. 
  • Do: Provide an account of your damages and make a specific request for compensation. 
  • Do: Include a reasonable deadline for a response from the recipient. 
  • Do: State your intention to take legal action if the personal injury case is not resolved. 
  • Don’t: Use threatening or abusive language that could shut down settlement discussions. 
  • Don’t: Include unnecessary details that could potentially distract from your case.  
  • Don’t: Make false statements or misrepresentations about the accident or your injuries. 

A demand letter should always be drafted and reviewed by an experienced Winchester, VA personal injury lawyer. An attorney will be able to take into account the specific circumstances of your case and help you craft a demand letter that puts you in the best position to get a full and fair settlement. 

Call Our Winchester, VA Personal Injury Lawyer for Immediate Help With Your Case

At Correll Law Firm, our Winchester personal injury attorney fights tirelessly to help injured victims get justice, accountability, and the maximum available financial settlement. If you or your loved one suffered a severe injury in an accident, we are ready to get started on your case right away. Give us a call at 540-535-2005 or contact us directly online for a free, no-obligation review of your case. We represent injured victims in Winchester and throughout the wider region in Northern Virginia.