Example simple demand letter for auto accident personal injury matter

Example

September 10, 2009

State Farm Insurance

Attn: Helpful Adjuster

Auto Claims Central

P.O. Box 20707

Murfreesboro, TN  37129

1-877-336-5759

RE: Our Client:                  Really Hurts

Your Insured:              Really Negligent

Date of Loss:              01/01/2000

Claim No.:                   9999999

Dear Mr. Adjuster:

As you are aware, this firm has been retained by Really Hurt regarding the injuries she sustained in the above-referenced accident. We offer this letter as an explanation of our client’s injuries with the hope that we may reach an amicable and early settlement of this case. It is our desire to avoid the cost and time consuming nature of filing a formal complaint with the court. We therefore ask for your help in reaching a quick and amicable settlement.

Background

The accident occurred on January 1, 2000, at the intersection of Beale Street and Front Street in Memphis, Tennessee. Ms. Hurt was the driver of her 2000 Mercedes.  She was at the stop sign at the intersection of Beale Street and Front Street when suddenly, and without warning, Ms. Negligent violently rammed her vehicle from the rear. Ms. Negligent’s reasoning for ramming Ms. Hurt was simply that she “wasn’t paying attention.”

The impact was substantial enough that it caused Ms. Hurt’s vehicle to be catapulted into the intersection. Ms. Hurt’s head struck the headrest, causing her two front teeth to be loosened.  It is estimated that Ms. Negligent’s vehicle may have been traveling as fast as thirty-five miles per hour when she unexpectedly, unlawfully and violently struck Ms. Hurt from the rear.

Ms. Hurt is a 67 year old woman who has spent her life helping others and working to improve her life. She has been employed continuously for the past thirty years by the Lending Hands Hospice. And prior to being hit from behind in the above mentioned accident she enjoyed her days as a nurse.

Damages

Following the accident Ms. Hurt sought attention at Baptist Memorial Hospital East and complained of pain in several different areas of her body, including injuries to her head, neck, shoulders, and back. A series of X-rays thankfully showed no severely traumatic injuries or serious internal injuries, and Ms. Hurt was released home and prescribed Lortab, Robaxin and Naproxen to deal with swelling and pain. Ms. Hurt was also instructed to follow up with Dr. Help Meout for physical therapy and continued monitoring.

Due to the severity of the impact, Ms. Hurt suffered from increasing pain in her neck, left shoulder, and upper back.  At this point Ms. Hurt became concerned because she had shown no noticeable improvement in her condition and sought additional treatment and therapy with Dr. Help Meout, which has lasted over three months and is ongoing. Ms. Hurt was diagnosed by Dr. Help Meout as suffering from acute trauma, acute and chronic cervical spine strain, muscle and neck spasms, limited shoulder mobility, and muscle tension headaches.  Further testing and an MRI conducted by Dr. Help Meout documented supraspinatus and infraspinatus tendinopathy of her rotator cuff tendon and shoulder.

Because of the limited range of motion, pain, stiffness and swelling Ms. Hurt missed considerable time at work.  She has continued to take medication to assist with pain and range of motion and will most likely be required to continue with medication indefinitely in order to deal with her ongoing and non-relenting pain. And because of this continued pain she faces the potential of injection and/or arthroscopic intervention for her shoulder in the future.

Since the accident and resulting injuries, Ms. Hurt has been extremely limited in her activities. She has lost twenty-four (24) days of work on the advice of her physicians. At the time of her accident, Ms. Hurt was employed with the Helping Hearts Hospice. Ms. Hurt’s duties as a nurse were such that it was necessary to be on her feet for extended periods of time while helping patients. Since her accident she has been changed to a clerk position rather than as a nurse, due to her limited mobility. She was earning approximately $1,125 per week. We enclose herewith copies of her pay stubs for the applicable pay periods.

Accordingly, the following is a tabulation of Ms. Hurt’ losses:

Really Hurt – Medical Specials and Lost Wages

●          Medical Visits & Co-pays                                           $ 8,697.01

●          Lost Wages                                                                  $ 4,809.10

(12 weeks  – Corporate Management and Associates)

TOTAL                                                                                                $ 13,506.11

Liability

It is undisputed that Ms. Negligent’s gross negligence and/or recklessness was the sole and proximate cause of the injuries suffered by Ms. Hurt.  In fact Ms. Negligent was cited by the Memphis Police for failure to maintain a safe lookout. This negligence caused Ms. Hurt to amass significant medical bills and numerous serious injuries which have caused pain, suffering, reduced mobility, and lost wages.  Despite the fact that Ms. Negligent was insured at the time of this accident, her grossly negligent and/or reckless driving which caused the accident are especially egregious under the circumstances.  It is probable that a Memphis jury would agree that Ms. Negligent’s driving was grossly negligent and/or reckless and therefore assess significant damages.  With that in mind, it would seem that State Farm would have a desire to settle this matter before litigation is necessary.

Conclusion

On behalf of our client, based on the above, we thereby demand the sum of $122,073.32, or policy limits, in full settlement of the claims set forth above. These amounts take into consideration all past, present, and future medical bills; lost wages; and pain and suffering.  It should be noted that Ms. Hurt still experiences headaches, soreness and reduced mobility in the affected areas and total recovery may never occur. In fact invasive surgical procedures might be needed to correct damage that occurred to Ms. Hurt’ shoulder.  The amount of the damages, coupled with Ms. Negligent’s grossly negligent and/or reckless driving, and complete indifference to the condition of the occupants of his vehicle, would seem to dictate a quick and complete settlement.

As you are aware, time is of the essence in this matter and if an amicable settlement cannot be reached before the statute of limitations expires on January 1, 2001 formal action with the court will be taken. However, we would prefer to settle this case without the necessity for further legal actions.

Please call me with any questions or concerns. I look forward to working with you.

Yours very truly,

Jami K. Ferrell

JKF/

Enclosures

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Comments

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  2. Sherry Seman says:

    is that a realistic amount to be compensated? i was rear ended also not sure how much im getting but that seems like a lot

  3. Sherry,

    Thanks for your question. Your correct, that would be “a lot” for a typical accident where someone was rear-ended. Unfortunately the insurance system makes us play a silly game where must ask for the highest possible amount in our demand letter. The insurance companies we send these demands to know that the demand is almost always just a starting point. But if we started at a “more realistic” figure that we hoped to settle at then the insurance companies would come back with an ridiculously low offer and we would never get close to a fair settlement.

    Thanks for reading and thanks for your question.

    Jami

  4. Last year I was injured in an automobile accident along with my wife. Our vehicle was totaled and so far we have been compensated for it. We have not been compensated for our injuries, for which we are still recieving medical treatment. I want to send a letter to the other driver’s insurance company to determine the policy amount that he is insured. I want to do this to compare the policy amount versus our medical bills, loss of income from work etc. If the amount is less than our bills then I would seek legal counsel. Can you advise me what type of questions to ask in my letter?

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