Pedestrian vs Auto Accident Demand Letter

A car accident is a scary experience. Being struck by a car as a pedestrian is something no one wants to happen. But if you find yourself in this awful position, you may be overwhelmed by the process of getting compensation. Part of this process includes writing a pedestrian vs auto accident demand letter.

Serious pedestrian traffic accidents are on the rise. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), there was 6,283 pedestrians killed in traffic crashes in 2018, a 3% increase from 2017. The CDC reports that 137,000 pedestrians were treated in emergency departments for nonfatal crash-related injuries in 2017. 

It is perhaps not surprising that auto accidents involving pedestrians are common and often result in serious injuries. Pedestrians are often caught off-guard when struck by vehicles moving at high speeds. Pedestrians are typically in an excellent bargaining position when it comes to settlement negotiations with insurance companies.

To maximize your chances of receiving adequate compensation for your injuries, you or your pedestrian accident lawyer will need to put together a well-written and persuasive pedestrian vs auto accident demand letter. The following is an example of a demand letter for use by a pedestrian that was struck and injured by a car. 

To maximize your chances of receiving adequate compensation for your injuries, you or your pedestrian accident lawyer will need to put together a well-written and persuasive pedestrian vs auto accident demand letter. 

How to Assemble A Strong Demand Packet

The first thing that you have to do before starting your demand letter is to figure out the value of your claim. You do this by collecting all of your medical bills, receipts for any out of pocket expenses related to the accident, and any other proof of costs. These hard costs are special damages. You can also calculate the amount you expect for pain and suffering. This emotional distress is general damages. 

You will need to submit all of the bills and receipts that you collected, in addition to:

  • Police report
  • Eyewitness statements
  • Photographic evidence of the accident and your injuries

How to Draft a Detailed Demand Letter

Use these tips to ensure that your demand letter is informative and conveys your claim for compensation clearly. 

  • Have someone proofread your letter.
  • Check for spellings of all names and locations.
  • Double check your math with totals.
  • Use clean, white paper to print on.
  • Remember to sign the letter in blue or black ink. 
  • Send your letter via certified mail. Request proof of receipt. 

The demand letter should have these sections: 

  • Statement of facts: In detail, describe the accident. Be sure to mention what happened before and after the vehicle struck you. 
  • Liability: Explain why the driver was at fault for the accident.
  • Injuries: Describe your injuries. Don’t forget to include any emotional trauma and pain and suffering that resulted. 
  • Damages: Detail your special and general damages. 

Keep a copy of the letter, all bills and receipts for your own file. This will be important to have on hand if your claim goes into negotiations or further.

Sample Pedestrian vs Auto Accident Demand Letter

January 26, 2021

VIA FACSIMILE: 800-123-4567

Mr. Stu Rogers
123 Main Street
Los Angeles, CA 80000

RE:                 Claimant:                               Bruce Waynor

                       Claim Number:                     111-2222-3333

                       Date of loss:                           June 10, 2020

                       Settlement Demand:           $150,000.00

FOR SETTLEMENT PURPOSES ONLY

NOTE: Including “For Settlement Purposes Only” in a pedestrian vs auto accident demand letter ensures that the correspondence is not subsequently introduced at trial should you fail to reach a settlement agreement. 

Dear Mr. Rogers: 

This letter shall serve as a representation of damages that I suffered after your insured struck me with their car as I was crossing the intersection of 3rd and Ocean Avenue in Los Angeles, California. I am demanding compensation for my losses as detailed below. 

Facts Regarding Liability 

As you know, I was crossing 3rd Avenue in Los Angeles, when you insured, Tommy Stark, struck me with his car while traveling north on Ocean Avenue. Mr. Stark ran a red light, and I was walking within a marked crosswalk. Mr. Stark made no effort to slow down and the intensity of the impact sent my body flying 10 feet down the roadway. I was immediately knocked unconscious and did not regain consciousness until I woke up in the emergency room surrounded by friends and family. 

There can be no question that your insured was negligent. Mr. Stark ran a red light and struck a pedestrian lawfully walking within a marked crosswalk. Thus, Mr. Stark is liable for my injuries.

NOTE: Provide a brief summary of the important facts. Conclude with a statement that the insured is liable for your injuries. If any other facts support that the insured was at fault (i.e., he was issued a citation for running a red light) be sure to mention them.

Bodily Injury and Medical Treatment

Mountain Hospital 

Immediately after I was struck by your insured, I was taken to Mountain Hospital located in Los Angeles, California. I suffered large abrasions on my arms and legs from the road and received countless stitches to close the wounds. I will have permanent scarring as a result. An X-Ray revealed that my right arm was fractured. My injuries were diagnosed as follows:

NOTE: Be sure to include official diagnoses in your pedestrian vs auto accident demand letter. They will be notated by the insurance company. You can find your diagnoses on your discharge paperwork and other relevant medical records reflecting the treatment that you received. 

Diagnosis 

  • R/L Leg Abrasions 
  • 20 Stitches Right Leg
  • 15 Stitches Left Leg 
  • Head Contusion 
  • Concussion 
  • Right Arm Fracture 

I spent two nights in the hospital and was discharged with instructions to consult with an Orthopedic Physician. 

Dr. Stone – Orthopedic Physician 

The day after I was discharged from the hospital, I presented to Dr. Stone in Los Angeles, California to seek treatment for arm and other injuries. Dr. Stone examined me and diagnosed the injuries that I suffered as a direct result of your insured’s negligence as a right arm fracture and back/neck pain and discomfort.

Dr. Stone referred me to get an MRI and return for a follow-up visit. 

NOTE: It is a good idea to keep your medical treatment in chronological order. You are telling the insurance company a story through your pedestrian vs auto accident demand letter. Make it easy to follow.

Diagnostic Imaging Associates 

2 days after my consultation with Dr. Stone, I presented to Diagnostic Imaging Associates in Culver City, California. At this time, I received an MRI of my Lumbar Spine and Right Arm. The MRI report evidenced the following: 

Right Arm MRI:

  1. Right Arm Vertical Fracture 

Lumbar MRI

  1. L1-2: There is a 1-2 mm disc bulge
  2. L3-L4: There is a 3-4 mm disc bulge 
  3. There is a 2-3 mm disc bulge effacing the nerve root

Dr. Stone – Follow-up Visit

I returned to Dr. Stone following my MRI. Dr. Stone fitted my right arm with a cast. He examined my back and prescribed pain medication and referred me to a physical therapist to help me regain strength, muscle function, and range of motion. Dr. Stone directed me to follow-up if my back and neck pain persisted following completion of physical therapy. 

Dr. Jones, PT

On June 25, 2020, I presented to Dr. Jones for physical therapy treatment. At that time, I was experiencing severe neck, back, and shoulder pain. Since my arm was in a cast, he had to modify my exercises. I attended physical therapy twice per week for 8 weeks. My pain, strength, and range of motion improved over time due to physical therapy treatment. It was necessary for me to receive his treatment due to the nature of my injuries and diagnoses by my orthopedic physician. 

NOTE: To limit liability, insurance companies frequently make the argument that some or all medical treatment was not necessary. Justify treatment where possible and include a copy of your doctor’s prescription for additional medical treatment (i.e., physical therapy). This is very important to include in your pedestrian vs auto accident demand letter. 

Future Medical Care and Treatment

As a result of your insured’s negligence, I will require future medical care and treatment. Should my symptoms return it will be necessary for me to return to a doctor for treatment. For these reasons, I require compensation for the costs of any future medical care and treatment. 

Damages 

My medical bills were as follows: 

Mountain View Hospital – $12,000.00
Dr. Stone – $6,000.00
Ambulance – $1,000.00
Diagnostic Imaging Associates – $3,500.00
Dr. Jones – $7,500.00
Total: $30,000.00

I work as a construction foreman for ABC Construction. I earn $1,500.00 per week and missed 6 weeks of work. I have attached a letter from my Orthopedic Doctor explaining that I could not work during that time. Accordingly, my lost earnings claim is $9,000.00. My total special damages are $39,000.00.

NOTE: Be sure to include a letter from your doctor that clearly states that you were unable to work, for how long, and the reasons why. Without a signed letter, the insurance company will decline your lost earnings claim.

Settlement Demand

The enclosed documentation provides you with a sufficient basis to reasonably evaluate this claim. Due to the significant pain and suffering that I endured and the high likelihood of requiring future medical treatment, I demand $150,000.00 to settle this case. Please contact me should you require any additional information or to discuss this settlement demand in more detail.

I appreciate your prompt resolution of this matter. Thank you.

 

Sincerely,

Bruce Waynor
Tel: (213) 234-8888

Enclosures

Need a Lawyer to Help With Your Demand Letter?

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