Writing an effective demand letter is an art. I caution against going it alone, especially when you know it will be acted upon by an attorney for the employer who is familiar with the employment discrimination laws. A well-written demand letter can result in an early resolution of your claims. While a poorly-written demand letter can end up in the trash can. Consider hiring a lawyer at Liszka and Gray, LLC to draft a demand letter that highlights the best parts of your claims and applies the most recent case law to your claims.
In general, there are several keys to well-written demand letters.
State the Basis For Your Belief That You Were Discriminated Against. I’ve reviewed many client-written demand letters that tip-toe around the heart of the issue. Leaving out the express language that you were discriminated against or that you are being subjected to a hostile work environment because of your membership in a protected class or characteristic defeats the purpose of the letter.
Follow an Organizational Structure, such as “CRAC”. Effective demand letters follow a Conclusion, Rule, Analysis, Conclusion structure. You want to tell the audience exactly what you want upfront. Follow that with what the rule or legal principle is that makes your case sound. Then give a brief recitation of the facts that are relevant to your claim. Follow that with an application of the relevant rule or legal principle to the facts, so that your conclusion flows naturally and reasonably from that application.
Frame the Facts of Your Case in an Objective Manner. Do not overstate or exaggerate your claims. It will harm your credibility and the audience will take the claim less seriously. Instead, try to frame the facts objectively. By doing this, you will build trust with the audience and you will establish credibility.
Decide Whether to Include Supporting Documents. Supporting documents can sometimes help or hurt your case. Deciding whether to include them in a demand letter is a strategic decision. You should consult with an attorney if you are unsure.
Have it Reviewed By an Employment Lawyer Before You Send it, if Possible. Or, simply have a lawyer draft the letter for you in the first place. Researching the law takes effort and skill, and marshaling the facts from an objective standpoint is impossible to do on your own. If cost is a concern, call or e-mail us and we will work with you to develop a budget that makes sense.