A demand letter is an official letter which makes a demand to the recipient. When someone receives such a letter, he also received a legal obligation. The person needs to resolve an issue such as acting on a contract they agreed upon.

You may even give a demand letter for money owed to someone who owes you money. Such demand letter samples can serve as official evidence in court. They can also serve as a solution to a specific dispute.

If you need to settle a problem, you don’t have to send a demand letter immediately. However, if you’ve already spoken to the person but you still haven’t come to a solution, then you can send a letter.

Such letters will help solve the problem in a timely manner. In fact, some courts would require you to have a sample demand letter before proceeding with a case. There may be cases when you’re unable to reach a settlement.

If so, having such document would allow you to present your case before a judge.

You may give the letter personally or send it in the mail. But if the letter comes back to you unopened, then maybe your records are already outdated. The person you’re writing to may have moved or the business may have already closed down.

In such cases, there’s a possibility that the recipient won’t have any liabilities. This is especially true if you’re unable to find the person you’re giving the letter to.

The recipient must officially receive your demand for payment letter. This is important for it to stand-up in court. So if you’re sending it in the mail, you really need to make sure that you have the correct address.

If it comes back to you, try to find out the new address of the recipient. Do this so you can still send your letter.

Demand Letter Templates

Types of demand letter templates

Nowadays people aren’t as careful as they used to be. Because of this, a lot of problems arise due to carelessness or forgetfulness. This is the reason why demand letters are very useful. You can use them to ask for what’s rightfully yours in a formal way.

You can use demand letter samples for compensation for damages caused by carelessness. You may even use a demand letter for money owed to ask for payment from a person.

There are different types of templates you can create. You can make a sample demand letter for:

  1. Advance payment
  2. Auto accidents
  3. Extension of payment date
  4. Final demand for payment
  5. Guarantor
  6. Insurance
  7. Legal purposes
  8. Money owed

No matter what the purpose of your letter is, you need to make sure it’s well-thought-out. Think of the wordings carefully. This is especially important if you think it might end up becoming a piece of evidence.

Such letters are official and so you need to structure them well too. If you don’t wish to write it by yourself, you can download a template from here.

Demand Letter Samples

Creating the structure for your demand letter template

If you watch the news a lot, you’ll learn that there are a lot of court cases being successfully solved. Because of this, you may want to go straight to court when experiencing a problem with another person.

Unfortunately, this can be very expensive for you. Besides, most times, creating a demand letter should be the very first step to take. For instance, you can make a demand for payment letter if someone owes you money.

Such letters are official documents which you give to a person you have a problem with. In the letter, explain the problem as well as the details of your demands. Do this as a first step to avoid expenses and complications. You may be quite surprised at how effective a simple letter can be.

You don’t have to have a huge problem in order to use a letter to make demands. Such letters are mainly meant to inform the other side that you need what’s due at the soonest possible time.

Such letters are especially beneficial when dealing with payments and money owed. A lot of times, people who owe you money may forget to pay. Either that or they don’t think you’ll do anything if they don’t give back what they borrowed.

In such cases, their thoughts will definitely change. This will happen after you give them a demand letter for money owed. In it, you should list the reasons why you’re asking for the payment already.

In more serious cases, you can even state that unless the person pays at a given date, you’ll go to court.

Giving such a document is important. It will make the person realize that you’re serious about solving the problem. It will make them think about a solution which will benefit you both. Usually, people will pay up rather than spend more money on lawyers because you sued them in court. But how do you structure such a letter? If this is your first time to do so, here are some tips to help you out:

  • State your reasons
    The very first thing you need to write in your letter is your reasons for it. You should state these reasons so the recipient will know what it’s about. It’s best to include a detailed explanation of all the events which led to the issue at hand.
    This way, you have all the details in writing. So if you end up using the document in court, it will serve as a strong piece of evidence. The judge can use it to understand all the circumstances of your situation.
  • Be professional and polite
    When you’re writing the letter, keep in mind that you need to stay professional and polite. Even if you’re angry and you have a lot to say, restrain yourself. You don’t want to end up insulting the recipient or making him angry.
    When this happens, the letter might not work as well. Don’t just let your emotions get the best of you. Instead, use a businesslike tone when writing the letter. If possible, make sure that the recipient sees what will happen if he doesn’t comply.
    The more transparent you make your letter, the more effective it will be. Also, if you use a polite tone, the recipient won’t feel bad about getting the document.
    When writing such a letter, don’t use your handwriting. It’s not really professional and your reader might not understand it. Use a typewriter or a computer to compose the letter.
    Then if you have your own letterhead or stationary, print your document out on that.
  • State your demands
    Apart from the reasons for your letter, you should also state your demands. Without the demands, your reader might just dismiss the document altogether. This typically happens when there aren’t any specific or detailed requirements included.
    Write down everything you want in your letter.
    If you’re asking for payment, give the specific amount. Then give the details on why the recipient needs to pay that much. On the other hand, if you’re demanding that the recipient perform tasks, list them down.
    All the tasks should be in complete detail to avoid confusion and misunderstandings.
  • Provide an ultimatum or alternative
    The next thing you should do is to give an ultimatum or an alternative to your recipient. In the case of payments, give your reader a deadline. Or you can provide an alternative in case the recipient won’t be able to accomplish the tasks on time.
    When you do this, the recipient can either agree to your demands or not. Then you also need to include the consequences. If the reader doesn’t comply, then he would have to face those consequences.

Demand Letters For Money Owed

Keep these in mind when writing a demand letter template

Now you have a better idea of what to include in your demand letter sample. But it’s also important to know how to write one. When you’re making a template for your letter, keep these things in mind:

  • Don’t write your letter by hand
    It’s never a good idea to write your demand letter by hand. If you don’t have a typewriter or computer, look for one. You can borrow one or even rent one in a computer shop. Doing this makes the letter more formal or official for your reader.
    Also, print it out on a letterhead or your personal stationary to make it legal.
  • Explain all the facts of your situation clearly
    You may think it’s strange to explain your situation to the reader but it’s essential. It’s extremely important to write everything down. Do this in case you’ll need the document in court.
    It’s also important to include this so the reader understands your perspective too.
  • Always practice politeness
    Never use an attacking tone when you’re writing this letter. Sure, it’s called a “demand letter.” But that doesn’t mean that you should have a demanding tone. State the facts simply and professionally.
    Also, never use threats or other statements which convey anger or frustration.
  • Make your demands clear
    It’s also crucial to make all your demands clear. Explain the amount you want as payment and the tasks you want the recipient to do. The clarity of this information is vital to the letter. Make sure of it so everyone understands the information in it.
  • Include all the consequences of inaction
    The consequences of the reader’s inaction are also a vital part of the letter. That’s why you must include this information too. Inform the reader of what will happen when he doesn’t pay or do what you agreed.
    Usually, the last resort would be to go to court with the case.
  • Make copies of your document
    When you’re done with your letter proofread it before you send it. Then you can print it out. It’s a good idea to make copies of your document. Do this so that if the recipient doesn’t get it, you can easily produce another copy.
    After printing the document out, don’t forget to sign it. Then you can either hand it to the person directly or send it in the mail. Either way, you need to make sure that the recipient gets the letter and acknowledges it.

Demand for Payment Letters

FAQs about demand letters

Demand letter templates are very useful. This is especially true if you want to avoid complicated lawsuits. Such documents are fairly easy to write but they do have a big impact. This is especially true for the recipient of the letter.

Before writing your own demand letter sample, let’s answer some questions about them:

  • When should you write the letter?
    When you’re planning to file small claims, the first step is to write the letter. It’s a legal way to put into words the situation and all other relevant information. Then you can give the letter to the person you’ve written it for.
  • What should you write in your letter?
    Write down all the details of the situation to make everything clear. Then write down all the reasons for the letter as well as your demands. After that, include what will happen if the reader doesn’t comply with your demands.
    These are the most important things to include in your letter to make it official.
  • What should you stay away from when writing the letter?
    First and foremost, you should stay away from rude and threatening language. Never berate or insult the reader no matter how upset you are. Using impolite or negative language will make the letter less effective.
    Also, remember that if you end up in court, the judge will read the letter. So if you write negative things, it might sway the decision of the court.
  • How long should your letter be?
    The fact is, there’s no minimum or maximum length for such letters. But it’s better to make it short and concise. Writing a lengthy letter which has too many words might confuse or bore the reader.
    In either case, he won’t read the document all the way to the end. That would be such a shame especially if you wrote the letter carefully. Also, remember to make copies of your document in case you need it in the future.
TemplateLab July 8th, 2018