You probably aren’t in a good place right now, both mentally, as well as financially. Someone has either damaged your property, owes you money, or the rent of something that belongs to you is due. You are losing your temper for obvious reasons yet you don’t yet find an urgent need of court redressal. Plus, all the legal claims in the court can be a financial burden as well. For instance, you might feel the need to hire a representative, that is an attorney who will claim fees, along with your time-cost involved in the meetings. Apart from that, there’s no guarantee that the decision will always be in your favor due to the lack of legitimate evidence. So, why consider it at all when you can extract the most ideal outcome by doing something much easier but also much more effective: writing a demand letter.
There is a lot to learn about demand letters but primarily you must be aware of its different types before diving into the detailing of each one of them. This will help you pick the most appropriate kind of demand letter considering the situation you are facing. Let’s begin:
- A Demand Letter demanding payment
Mostly, this type of demand letter is written by small business owners to customers who have been ignoring the invoices for payments. It is also opted by freelancers of different fields for the clients who have been too slow making payments to recover doubtful debts. Along with that, even B2B Companies also write demand letters to companies availing their services but ignoring invoice-calls.
Long story short, they are needed for comparatively smaller claims to avoid hassles in the court and showing the opposition party you are serious about the payment.
- A Demand Letter demanding the money owed
There are times when we lend a helping hand (in terms of money) to our friends or family during their crisis, but they forget to return it back. Things get worse when they start ignoring our phone calls. But since none of us want to spoil the relations for the future, dragging the matter to the court isn’t the best possible solution.
Thus, a carefully drafted demand letter will not only make them realize they need to make the payment but at the same time not cross the boundaries with ugly warnings. This type of demand letter is also useful when your landlord is playing dirty by not returning your security deposit.
- A Demand Letter demanding the damages to property
The name itself suggests what this type of a demand letter is primarily for and how useful it can get. For instance, drawing a scenario, you have a tenant, and he ends up damaging your property. You find out that his security deposit is not sufficient to cover it and you ask for the extra amount required. But, since the issue isn’t resolved, you draft a demand letter demanding damages. None of you really want to go to court for petty issues and this is a win-win for both parties.
- A Demand Letter demanding the return of property
This isn’t probably so common but here’s an example to help you understand better: You live with your roommate and one day your roommate moves out. While packing the luggage, he/she mistakenly picks a few of your priced stuff. Once you realize the misplacement of your belongings, you ask for it, and your roommate promises to return. But, every time you decide on a mutual date, he fails to show up.
It is understood that court is definitely not the solution here, so instead, you can draft a demand letter asking for your belongings. This works the other way round as well, for example, you had to move out, and you left some of your belongings with your roommate and every time you dial and ask him/her to handover your belongings, your calls are unanswered. So in that case, draft a demand letter seeking your property.
Your first demand letter isn’t going to be perfect but don’t give up. Because as the age-old paraphrase says, “Practice makes a man perfect”. Learn the basics of writing a demand letter, browse through a few examples and then draft your own. You can even seek help from a pre-collection service like LastDemand to create a demand letter for payment.
Internet and other journals can only give you a basic idea of what should and shouldn’t be included in the demand letters, the rest depends on your judgement and understanding.