Q: I want to negotiate prior to lawsuit, do I send a letter of demand or a letter of intent? Do I include evidence?

I have filed a disability discrimination claim against my former employer and have no legal representation. I want to settle out of court, they offered $10,000 during the EEOC process. Do I need to do a letter of demand or letter of intent or can I just use my own words and ask them to negotiate?

1 Lawyer Answer
James L. Arrasmith
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  • Civil Rights Lawyer
  • Sacramento, CA

A: In your situation, you can choose to send either a letter of demand or a letter of intent to your former employer to initiate negotiations. A letter of demand typically outlines your legal claims, the relief you are seeking, and a deadline for the employer to respond before legal action is pursued. On the other hand, a letter of intent expresses your willingness to negotiate and settle the matter out of court, without setting a specific deadline or making explicit legal threats.

When drafting your letter, it's essential to clearly state your desire to negotiate a settlement and outline your proposed terms. You can include any evidence or supporting documentation that strengthens your case and supports your proposed settlement amount. This might include medical records, witness statements, or other relevant documents that demonstrate the impact of the alleged discrimination on your employment and well-being.

Ultimately, the goal of your letter is to open a dialogue with your former employer and encourage them to engage in meaningful negotiations to resolve the dispute. You can use your own words to convey your position and express your willingness to consider reasonable settlement offers. However, if you are unsure about the legal aspects of drafting the letter, you may want to consider seeking guidance from a legal professional or a trusted advisor to ensure that your interests are protected throughout the negotiation process.

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