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How to Write a Character Reference Letter

Must-read Rules and Tips on How to Write a Character Reference Letter

Here is a guide on how to write a character reference letter for varied purposes.
Penlighten Staff
Last Updated: Aug 8, 2018
A character reference letter is written as a recommendation for a person, one who seeks a particular position in a company or within a non profit organization. This letter involves at its core, talking about the person's qualities and how those qualities are the opportune and exact traits in character that the company needs for success.
This letter is usually written by friends or family members and is also known as a personal letter of reference. Though it runs on the same lines of an employment reference letter, it is not the same.
In a character reference letter, the main focus is placed on talking about the qualities of the person like, trust, integrity, and honesty, among others. Here, we will give you several character reference letter examples in different situations.
Character Reference Letter for Employment
A character reference letter for employment requires certain things to be taken care of. Those are the following.
  • Try to find who the employer is so that you can address the letter to him directly. This will show well for the efforts that you've taken.
  • In the first paragraph, introduce yourself, talk about the relationship you have with the person you are writing the letter for, and the amount of time that you know the person for.
  • In the next paragraph, mention the qualities of the person. Bring these out by stating specific and clear examples.
  • In the following paragraph, reiterate what you already stated (qualities) as a summary and talk about how you're pleased to recommend that person.
  • Make sure that you have spoken about his/her positive qualities before giving the recommendation.
  • Don't forget to sign off with a personal signature and the date. Provide your contact information so that they can contact you to verify things.
Character Reference Letter for Court
This letter is written to plead to the judge about the character of the defendant. Here is what should be done.
  • Find out where the case is taken, is it in the magistrate's court or the country court. Depending on which, the way you address the letter will change.
  • In case it is in the magistrate's court, then the letter should be addressed as 'To the Sentencing Magistrate', and if it is taken in the county court then it should be addressed as 'To the Sentencing Judge'.
  • Next, mention the charge that has been set against him so that the judge knows that you're aware of the case in its entirety.
  • Mention the number of years you've known the defendant so that it can be seen as a genuine effort on your part.
  • If the defendant has committed a crime for the first time then mention it as 'out of character' in the character reference letter.
  • Next, get into a little more detail about the person's character, focusing on the good qualities that will help redeem his beaten status. Mention any social work that he might have done in school or college.
  • Make sure to talk about how the charges against him are affecting his personal and professional life and leading to a damaging effect.
  • Make sure to sign off with a personal signature and date. You could also provide your personal contact number so that the court can call you anytime they want to verify the points.
This composition focuses mainly on two situations―how to write a character reference letter for court and for employment. You can go on to write your letter based on these rules and tips.