If you get injured in an accident caused by another person’s recklessness or negligence, you have grounds for a personal injury claim. A personal injury claim has complex components, making it necessary to hire a personal injury attorney. A personal injury attorney will ensure that you maximize the chances of getting compensated.
To start your injury claim, you need to initiate contact with the at-fault party and inform them of your intent to seek compensation for the damages caused. This is done by sending them a demand letter. However, several factors determine how long it will take to get a response from the other party.
What Is a Demand Letter?
A demand letter contains information about the monetary settlement you expect to receive, which is determined by you and your lawyer. It also contains evidence and other vital facts about the case. Demand letters are crucial in letting the at-fault party know your intent to file a compensation claim.
Even though most insurance companies hesitate to pay injured victims, they don’t prefer going to trial. Writing a demand letter allows the insurance company to review the evidence and facts. If they find the facts substantial, they will offer a settlement and prevent the case from going to trial.
Factors Affecting Demand Letter Response Time
A demand letter sent to an insurance company marks the first step to your injury claim. Several factors can affect how long you will have to wait to get your check. Discussed below are some of them:
The Amount of Documentation and Evidence in the Demand Letter
If the insurance company goes through the letter and feels that there is missing information or evidence, it may request more information. This can significantly delay the time it takes for them to settle the case. It is vital to ensure that your demand letter is detailed and not missing crucial information.
How Busy the Insurance Adjuster Is
Insurance adjusters are individuals working for insurance companies, responsible for managing claims from policyholders or victims of policyholders. If the adjusters are preoccupied with many insurance claims, it might take time for the insurance company to reply to your demand letter.
The Number of Potentially Liable Parties
If several people are thought to have contributed to causing the accident, insurance companies will not act right away. They take their time trying to shift the blame to other parties, as they minimize their clients’ blame.
The Amount of Money Requested
If a demand letter is requesting a huge payout, the insurance company might take a long time to act. It is important to request a fair and reasonable settlement amount to streamline the process. This doesn’t mean that you should request an amount way below what you deserve, though. Work with your personal injury attorney and come up with an appropriate figure.
Also, you should note that an insurance company offering to pay you immediately may not be in your best interest. They might offer you low-ball settlements immediately after the accident, knowing you are desperate and in need of help. After agreeing to this mediocre offer, you will not be able to pursue additional compensation later on. The same might happen even after you send a demand letter—they will negotiate significantly reduced settlements.
Therefore, you need to have a good attorney who will fight to the end without accepting reduced settlements. Once you accept any form of settlement, you will not receive any more money. This can be painful if it becomes clear later on that the amount you received was not sufficient. Getting a good personal injury attorney is a good way of avoiding such instances.
Get the Compensation You Deserve
Getting compensated after sustaining injuries in an accident will help in the recovery process. However, this is only possible if you have a detailed and factual demand letter. Considering you may not be well-versed with matters concerning law and demand letters, it’s best to seek the services of a qualified attorney to help you with your case.