Settlement Negotiations: 2 Things You Shouldn’t Leave Out Of Your Demand Letter

If you're the victim of an auto accident, your personal injury attorney works hard to get you a fair settlement from your insurance claim. During this time, you also need to write and send in a demand letter to the insurance company responsible for the payout of the settlement. A demand letter generally lets the insurance company know the extent of your injuries, as well as how much your medical bills cost to treat them. But there are two things you shouldn't leave out in the your demand letter that may help your claim, including these below.

You Pay Child Support

If you pay child support to your children's other parent, an auto accident may keep you from doing so. This may discourage you, especially if the other parent depends on the financial support to help pay for your children's rent, clothing and high food costs. You may even fall months behind on your support obligations.

As you recover from your no-fault auto accident, you may not have the option to bring in a steady income due to your injuries. This may place you in a bind with family court. If family court takes your child support obligations directly out of your weekly, bi-weekly or monthly paychecks, you may eventually face several problems like these below:

  • The loss of your driver's license – This may happen if the court suspends it from the lack of payment.
  • Jail time for falling too far behind – This may happen if you miss six or more payments in a row, and the amount you owe reaches a substantial amount.
  • Relationship problems with the other parent – It may create a hostile environment with your kids because they may experience financial hardships from the lack of child support.

If you inform the insurance company about your situation, your attorney may negotiate a higher settlement payout for you. Remember, the car accident wasn't your fault and you deserve a settlement that may cover your past due child support obligations until you get on your feet.

Loss of Current Job Position

Missed child support payments aren't the only things that may happen to you. If you worked for a long time at the same place of employment, it can affect your job standing while you recover. Unless your injuries are minor, you may not have the opportunity to return to work in a reasonable amount of time. You may lose your current job position because of this.

The Family and Medical Leave Act allows employees, who obtain 1,250 hours of full-time work during a 12-month time period, to return to their jobs if they suffer from a health or medical emergency. This act may also prevent an employer from firing you during this recovery time. However, your employer may choose to demote you if he or she feels that you:

Lost the Physical or Mental Capabilities to Meet the Job's Requirements

For example, you now suffer from an extensive brain injury that prevents you from carrying out your duties in a timely manner. You can work another position that doesn't require strong thinking skills, but it lacks the pay or prestige you had with your old position.

Took Too Long to Recover and Lost the Skills the Position Requires

For instance, the job position requires ongoing certifications in order to maintain specific state or federal stipulations for it. Because of your extensive time off, you didn't have the time or ability to update or keep up these stringent requirements.

You may list or add these problems to your demand letter because they affect your current and future livelihood. The settlement you receive from the no-fault accident may allow you to set aside money to help pay your bills, or to keep you afloat until your health gets better.

You shouldn't be afraid to tell the insurance company about any life-changing events you experience because of the accident. Although there's no guarantee that you'll receive a higher settlement, it doesn't hurt to list the above issues on your demand letter. If you need assistance with your demand letter, consult with your attorney for additional help and advice. 

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