Direct Mail

How to Write a Demand Letter

By 12 March 2024May 26th, 2024No Comments
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How to Write a Demand Letter for Payment Correctly to Resolve Matters

Have you ever dealt with situations where a contractor won’t fulfill their obligation or a customer refuses to pay you?

These scenarios can be stressful and push you toward initiating litigation. But is there a way to resolve the matter without going to court?

Yes. The law suggests you learn how to write a demand letter to inform your opponent that you plan on taking legal action.

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Most likely, they will come to mediation after discussing the issue with you. It saves both parties money, time, and trouble fighting a legal dispute.

This guide helps you understand how to write a demand letter for payment or other reasons. We also discuss different ways to send it to your opponents and present some samples for your reference!

Let us begin!

What is a demand letter?

A demand letter, or letter of demand (LOD), is a legally-binding document you can send to clients or third parties demanding something. Perhaps a party owes you money or sells you a defective item. Other cases could be property damage, a contract breach, or a car accident.

Knowing how to write a demand letter for money owed allows you to contact the opponent and discuss your contract for the final time.

Some people refer to this document as the “lawyer’s letter.” But you don’t need to consult an attorney before writing and sending it.

The law lets people and companies know how to write a demand letter and send one themselves. You only need to consider a few tips and best practices to get the desired response from the letter.

In French, people refer to the LOD as the “mise en demeure,” which means formally demanding something.

Benefits of Learning How to Write a Demand Letter for Payment

Many courts require you to understand how to write a demand letter for money owed before filing lawsuits. It ensures you don’t unnecessarily move to the small claims court when you and the other party could resolve the matter yourselves.

But writing and sending a demand letter is advisable even if it isn’t legally essential because

  • It helps create urgency and draw the opponent’s attention to the matter. Many people or organizations don’t bother responding to a message. Hence, the demand letter is an excellent tool for getting a reply.
  • The demand letter for payment lets you organize the case and get the upper hand when you move to court. Most state governments will likely favour your lawsuit if you send the LOD and don’t get a resolution.

Promote Settlements

The primary advantage of learning how to write a demand letter is you can save the effort of filing a small claims case.

Some people think speaking with the adversary over the phone or in person is enough to inform them of what you expect to receive as a settlement. But an official LOD shows you are ready to take legal action and won’t let the matter slip away.

It would be best to understand how to write a demand letter for small claims court in a concise and upfront way. Your opposite party can meet the terms you mention within the deadline. Or you can use this letter as legal evidence to sue them and win the case!

Organize Your Case Better

You can prepare well for your lawsuit by writing a strong demand letter for payment. Drafting and sending it at the correct time helps set your stand on specific matters.

It helps you organize your lawsuit’s details, like the facts, evidence, dates, and section under which you want to sue the adversary.

Here’s an example:

Imagine you give a floor repair contract for your office to a well-known company, and they complete the job in three days. You notice cracks and other issues a week later and call them up. What if they don’t respond?

Knowing how to write a demand letter allows you to get in touch and inform them formally of your plan to move to court. It safeguards your interests as a customer and lets you get relevant services for the price you paid.

How to Write a Demand Letter for Payment

The law does not specify what to include in your LOD. But it needs you to demand payment or other reimbursement in writing, not verbally.

Also, it suggests you give your opponent adequate time to fulfil your demand. Otherwise, they are automatically entitled to respond to your letter within a reasonable time.

If you are unsure how to write a demand letter for personal injury or other matters, follow these steps:

At the Top

Include the following information at the top of your letters.

  • Your name, company name, address, and more.
  • The date you write the demand letter for payment.
  • Your intended recipient’s name and company name.
  • Your preferred way to send the letter (First Class, Certified, or Registered Mail).
  • The term “WITHOUT PREJUDICE” helps you add more details during the legal proceeding that you may forget to add to the letter.

Completing this section is your first step toward learning how to write a demand letter for money owed before shipping it.

Ensure your recipient knows who the letter is from immediately after opening it. Many people add “URGENT” or “IMPORTANT” to the envelope to grab the reader’s attention.

Body of the Letter

Your letter body should summarize the crucial facts about your agreement with the recipient. Remind them of the clauses or terms so they can keep up with their word.

If you don’t know how to write a demand letter, refer to online resources or speak to an attorney. Please remember that sending a LOD does not mean you want to start a lawsuit. It indicates you may or may not take legal action, depending on the response you receive.

Many companies or individuals forget what they promised to deliver to you, making it hard to resolve the matter. An official intimation helps reinstate what both parties had agreed to and speeds up the process. Hence, knowing how to write a demand letter for payment solve many cases before things get out of hand.

Here are the points to include in the body of your letter:

  • The problem: State your issue clearly, for example- non-payment for an invoice or an agreement breach.
  • The contract summary: It would be best to quote what is written in the contract (if you have one). Please attach a copy with the letter to remind them of your previous discussions.
  • Demand for relief or settlement: One of the most crucial parts of learning how to write a demand letter is the resolution stage. You must propose a way the opponent can respond or settle the matter. For example- “Please send a cheque for $2,780 to my office to avoid moving this case to court.”
  • Deadline for settlement: Provide the recipient with a date as a deadline. Ensure you don’t allow them more than two weeks because they might forget about the matter until then. Understanding how to write a demand letter for small claims court helps you draft these points beforehand. And you can add the details later, whenever something comes up.
  • Your intent to initiate a lawsuit: It is essential to mention your plans to move to court if the letter’s recipient fails to comply.
  • Your contact information: Include your name and contact information, enabling the recipient to get in touch to ask any questions or settle the matter.

At the Bottom

The bottom of your demand letter for payment must look official and formal. Always mention your sign at the end after the closing statement. Also, add enclosures, like the invoice, contract copy, or details of previously-shared emails and messages.

Don’t want to remember how to write a demand letter each time you want to connect with a contractor or third party? It is advisable to create and store templates for such situations.

Also, you can automate the process using PostGrid’s direct mail API! It lets you trigger mailings based on specific actions.

For example, you can send automatic payment demand letters to debtors monthly. Just integrate our API into your CRM and set relevant triggers.

PostGrid can prepare, print, and mail the letters on your behalf online, helping you get timely responses and payments.

Tips to Consider When Writing the Demand Letter

Here are some tips to follow when learning how to write a demand for payment letter:

Mention All the Facts

Do not forget to mention every detail, even if you think the opposite party knows everything. Write your version of all the facts, which helps you set the lawsuit’s nature if you move to court. Your letter must provide adequate context for anyone unfamiliar with the scenario.

Avoid Using a Threatening Tone

Refrain from using disparaging or threatening words. The opponent can use them against you in court.

Refer to demand letter examples that help you write facts with proper evidence instead of getting personal. It displays you as a calm, confident person who wants a settlement and is ready to take legal action.

Don’t Ask for Too Much

Understanding how to write a final demand for payment letter needs you to be reasonable. Make achievable demands, and don’t ask for more than what the opponent owes you.

Mention whether you are open to Negotiation

You can demand a specific action or amount. But there are chances the opponent does not agree to all your terms. Hence, mention whether you are open to discussing and negotiating the conditions.

Store Copies

Always store copies of your demand letter for payment for legal purposes. It allows you to have evidence that you tried to contact the opponent before filing the lawsuit.

We understand that sending a demand letter to third parties is hectic and time-consuming. At PostGrid, many of our clients say they stop asking for payment or resolution because they don’t want to go through the trouble.

Luckily, we have a solution for them—automated direct mail! They can quickly and affordably draft and ship letters to the correct recipients and save copies hassle-free.

How to Send Your Demand Letter for Payment

You may use any method to send your LOD to the concerned recipient. But ensure you prove you sent it and the other party duly received it. 

Here are some options: 

  • Email: Many people learn how to write a letter of demand for payment and email it to the opponent. Though it is convenient and quick, proving they got and read your email is a task. The company or individual can easily claim the concerned person didn’t get the message. Also, the court might not give much emphasis to this communication form. 
  • By-hand delivery: You may send a representative to the opponent’s office to hand-deliver the letter. But it is not viable because the person may refuse to sign for it. And you may be unable to prove you tried to send the letter in court. 
  • Direct mail: Knowing how to write a demand letter for payment and sending it via post is your best bet. It lets you have mailing and delivery proofs. Also, it is the most official and trusted communication medium. 

PostGrid’s direct mail services enable you to prepare and send your letters on time via Canada Post. You can choose between First Class, Registered, and Certified Mail to get shipping receipts and the recipient’s signature on delivery. 

Sample Demand Letter for Payment

Below is a demand letter example to help you write formal notices the correct way:


Date: May 4, 2024,


Kate Suppliers

78 NW Queen ST

Toronto ON M5V 1Z4

Demand Letter

Without Prejudice

Dear Mr. Jim,

I am writing to discuss the non-obeyance of our contract dated February 8, 2024. The agreement states that your company will send 2,000 iron rods to my warehouse in Ottawa by March 20, 2024.

We have still not received the shipment. My staff tried to contact you many times, dated March 21, March 24, March 30, and May 2, 2024. We also emailed you on the evening of March 20, 2024, asking for the status of our order.

You have already cashed our cheque for $XXXX in February. Please return the payment in full with a settlement fee of $1,000 for the delay before May 20, 2024.

On non-acknowledgment of this letter, we plan to file a case in small claims court to resolve the matter legally.

Kindly contact me by email or phone as soon as possible. We are open to negotiation and would like to meet with you.

I look forward to hearing from you soon.


Miley McAllister.


Enclosure: Contract #1025

Why Should You Use PostGrid’s Direct Mail API to Send a Demand Letter for Payment to Clients?

PostGrid’s all-inclusive direct mail solutions help take the workload off your shoulders. You don’t need to worry about buying printing papers and stamps and asking your staff to take the envelopes to the Post Office.

Also, you don’t need to learn how to write a demand letter for personal injury or other issues. PostGrid offers end-to-end mailing fulfilment to help make the process flexible, quick, and affordable for you.

Some of our best features include

One of our clients shared their experience working with us-

“PostGrid makes printing and mailing in bulk a breeze.” We can send thousands of marketing and compliance documents whenever needed without any issues. “The prices are also affordable and competitive, making this company the best choice in the market.”

Do you also want to get on board with us and send direct mail online? Click here to stop thinking about how to write a demand letter and automate the process to save time!

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