Tap to Read ➤

How to Write a Letter of Complaint?

When written effectively, a complaint letter can surely yield better results.
Ashwini Kulkarni Sule Jan 26, 2019
One of the most effective forms of communication is letter writing. The main advantage is that it gives ample time to the writer to gather his thoughts and draft them effectively. Secondly, the recipient does not need to respond right away, as he can take his own time as well. This makes it a favorable medium for conveying complaints to the concerned party.
Complaint letters often include conveying things which the recipient party does not want to hear. Thus, it needs a skill to convey these undesirable matters to the recipient without offending them, and at the same time getting your job done without any hassle. Here, you will learn how to write a letter of complaint.

General Guidelines

  • The letter should be always typed without any grammatical or formatting errors. If you must write it with hand, make sure the writing is legible and clean.
  • Being a formal one, it should be always short and precise.
  • Avoid unnecessary detail, but at the same time, do not miss crucial information.
  • Avoid profanities of all sorts, and do not let the writing sound threatening.
  • No matter how angry you are, always maintain a polite language throughout.
  • Clearly state what you expect on the part of the recipient.
  • If possible, attach documented evidence for your complaint.
  • Do not forget to thank the recipient in advance.

Different formats

To a Company

You are required to write this kind of letter to a company on the occasions when you are not happy with their services. In this case, begin with how you have enjoyed the services of the concerned company in the past. Then, mention all the relevant details of the concerned incidence.
Then politely state how it has forced you to have second thoughts about the company's reputation (this part is optional!). Next, write what exactly you expect in return, refund, or service replacement or whatever. Thank the recipient in advance and express your desire to continue relations with this company in future.

To an Employer

There are a number of occasions where complaining in writing, to an employer becomes inevitable. However, this is a tricky area and you must tread cautiously. Firstly, explain your role in the organization and state how happy you are to work with such a wonderful company.
Then, clearly express the reason for your complaint, if it's a cunning supervisor who snatches your credit every time or a lazy teammate who forces you to work like a slave. However, avoid directly criticizing the concerned person under all the circumstances. State the facts and support them by giving relevant proofs. Let your employer decide what to do.

About a Coworker

If you want to get even with a nasty coworker, then send this letter to the right person, mostly your immediate boss or team leader. Express the cause of your complaint and clearly state how the behavior of the coworker is affecting your performance. Avoid direct criticism. Express hope to get fair treatment in future.

To Landlord

On certain occasions, you might be required to write to your landlord regarding the repair of house, payment of taxes, or any legal notices. This can take a form of informal communication if you share such relationship with your landlord. If not, clearly state your problem and what you expect from the landlord.
Photographs revealing damaged parts of the house, which need repair can also be attached. You may also attach the copies of lease agreement and highlight the particular clause.

To a Hospital

While writing to the hospital, you might be required to provide the detailed information and relevant particulars of your case. Mention the name of the doctor or other staff in question and clearly state the cause of your displeasure. Also, state the form of returns that you expect from the hospital authorities.

To a School

Sometimes, you may have to bring certain unpleasant facts about the school administration before the authorities. The trick is to be extremely polite and mention what exactly is the cause of your concern, if it's the pile of homework or poor food quality of the cafeteria or whatever.
You may suggest some ideas for improvement, but don't sound arrogant or pompous. Hand deliver your letter to the principal or ask a teacher or staff member to hand it over to the concerned authority.

About a Manager

This format is pretty similar to the format of the one written to the company. However, in this case, mention the name of the manager and explain how his failure to perform his duties has affected you.
Remember, do not criticize the person and limit yourself to only stating the facts about his poor performance. Let the management of the company decide what to do about the concerned person. Meanwhile, you can always ask for your refunds.
There are a few more things to remember while writing a complaint letter. Do not write it in the heat of the moment, always wait for your anger to subside. This way you are less likely to miss out on important facts.
Always wait for a day before sending, then read it from the perspective of the recipient and make any changes, if required. Adopt the most feasible option of sending it. Hope these tips have helped you.