If you are injured because of a dog bite and want to file a claim with an insurance company for your damages, you must write and send a demand letter. This demand letter is an important aspect of your claim. During negotiations, the information and details included in your demand letter will be repeatedly used as reference.
For a dog bite injury, you will write your letter when you have finished, or are close to finishing, your medical treatment. Not only should your letter include a detailed account of the dog bite, you should be careful not to refer to the event of the dog bite as an “accident”, as this implies that it is not the dog owner’s fault.
If you need to write a demand letter, you should consider enlisting the help of a personal injury attorney. An attorney can help you write a strong demand letter and settle your claim quickly.
Sample Demand Letter in a Dog Bite Injury Claim
The following is a sample demand letter of a dog bite injury claim that includes what information and details should be included in your own letter.
[Your City, State, and Zip Code]
[Name of the Claims Adjuster]
[Their Job Title]
[Address of the Insurance Company]
[City, State, and Zip Code of the Insurance Company]
Re: Your Insured, [Name of the Defendant]
Claimant: [Your Full Legal Name]
Claim Number: (Only include this number if a claim number has already been assigned to you, and you have already been contacted about the matter).
Date of Loss: [Date of Accident or Incident in which the Medical Malpractice Took Place]
Dear Mr./Mrs. [Name of Claims Adjuster],
In response to my previous correspondence on March 2, 2014, please accept this letter as my formal demand for settlement in the matter mentioned above.
I was injured when your insured’s dog aggressively attacked me on my own property. The attack would not have happened if not for the negligence of your insured, Jonas Silverwood, who completely failed to properly restrain his dog in his own lawn. As a direct result of your insured’s negligence, I sustained serious injuries that resulted in medical treatment and loss of work.
At about 10:00 a.m. on December 28, 2013, I was taking down some holiday decorations in my yard. Your insured and his Rottweiler, who live down the street, happened to walk by and I noticed the dog started to growl. In the two years that the insured has lived at his residence, I have never taunted or teased the dog in question.
The dog, who happened to be unleashed, which is against the rules in our neighborhood, seemed to become anxious when he saw me standing on a ladder. He lurched at me, bearing his teeth and snarling before biting my pant leg and pulling me down the ladder. I sustained injuries from the bite as well as a broken nose and wrist due to falling off of the ladder. Another neighbor, Mrs. Eliza Jones, witnessed the attack and called an ambulance. Mr. Silverwood apologized and took his dog home.
While at the emergency room at Saint Michael’s Hospital at [insert address], I was treated by Dr. Hank Mays. He gave me five stitches to close the wound from the bite and wrapped my wrist and nose. He also recommended I stay home from my job at Flight Lines Delivery for two weeks for my injuries to heal properly.
Aside from my missed wages at work and medical treatment costs, pain in my broken wrist has caused me to require a prescription medication [name the medication] to manage the pain.
The expenses for my medical care, which are documented by enclosed bills, are:
Saint Michael’s Emergency Room: $350.00
Dr. Hank Mays, ER Doctor: $175.00
Prescription Pain Medication: $112.00
Due to the negligence of your insured, Mr. Jonas Silverwood, I experienced severe pain and suffering due to my injuries. I have also missed work, which resulted in lost wages that I need to pay required bills. As a result, I am seeking compensation for my injuries and general damages in the amount of $3,000.00.
I hope to hear back from you in no later than 30 days from the time of this correspondence, and I appreciate your timely response.
[Your Name – printed]
Note that the total damages you ask for should be more than the total medical costs. This will give you room to negotiate a fair settlement.
Getting Help with a Dog Bite Injury Claim
A detailed and thorough demand letter is an important document for ensuring that you get the compensation you deserve from your dog bite injury. A personal injury attorney can help ensure that you ask for the correct amount of damages and use the right language in your letter. They can also help you negotiate and file a lawsuit if necessary.