If you have to send out a letter to collect on a defaulted payment, then you need to refer to an example that will help you learn how a proper late payment letter should be drafted. This Buzzle article provides you with one such template and example.
Most people tend to view the entire task of letter writing very difficult, because, on most occasions, they are unsure of how to do it. This holds all the more true in case of those written for professional reasons, especially those written to reject someone, or to collect debts. In short, the ones that have a certain negative connotation to them. Trying to get someone to pay off their debts, especially someone who is a habitual defaulter is very difficult, and in most cases you need to resort to legal action, but courtesy demands that you send out a late payment letter that will ensure that the addressee knows that he has defaulted on a payment.
Such a letter also works as a proof that the addressee has been informed of his misdemeanor on several occasions, and has still failed to make the necessary arrangements to clear his debt. An example of such a letter serves as a good guideline for someone who needs to learn how to draft one. It is also a good idea to refer to a template which shows what should, and should not be included.
Name of Addressee
Reference: This is the section where you will mention the subject of the letter, in brief and concise terms. In this specific case, you can mention the bill or invoice number.
The very first paragraph of the letter needs to introduce the addressee to the reason for which the letter is being written. Without being aware of the purpose, it is impossible for the addressee to react at all. He needs to be informed that he has defaulted on his payment on the bill, that has been mentioned. You need to mention that a letter has been sent to the addressee before, which received no response. Mention the date on which it was sent. It is important that you send out a copy of the bill along, in case the earlier copy has been misplaced.
The second paragraph needs you to point out the transgression, and express in clear terms that, in case the bill is not paid by a certain date, then your organization will be forced to take legal action against the addressee. To avoid this he needs to pay the amount of the bill by a specific date which should be specified in this paragraph.
In the final paragraph, ensure that you apologize for the inconvenience in case the addressee has already paid the bill. Also mention that your organization is sure that the non-payment of the bill is a misunderstanding, and that you are sure that legal action will be unnecessary. At the end of the letter it is absolutely important that the person writing the letter mentions contact details enabling the addressee to contact you in case of any clarification.
Payment Letter Example
Accountant, Mssrs. Garcia and Botham
Sunset Boulevard, Cook County
Illinois – 505745
Date: August 19th 2010
Reference: Late Payment Reminder, Bill No #4582655
Dear Mr. Moffett,
This is with reference to bill no #4582655. As has been conveyed to you through our previous correspondence, our organization is still awaiting a payment of USD 3500 from you. We are yet to receive any payment on this bill and have not received any other intimation from you either. With this letter we are enclosing a duplicate of the bill mentioned herein for your reference.
Our company policy dictates that all bills need to be paid within a month of any kind of business conducted between the two parties. This is the third letter that our organization is sending you. We request you to kindly pay us by the 30th day of August. In case it is not made by then, we will be reluctantly forced to take legal action.
We truly believe that legal action of any sort will not be needed, and we are sure that this default on payment is a result of misunderstanding. We therefore request you to pay as soon as possible. Please ignore this letter in case you have already paid. In such a case we would like to apologize for the error of sending out this letter to you. In case you need to clarify something and need to contact us, our details are available on the bill enclosed with this letter.
We thank you for your cooperation, and hope that you will continue to do business with us in the future as well.
In any form of business writing it is important that you do not come across as rude or impolite, even in a situation where you are writing a letter to collect payments. Any good example will tell you how to walk the fine line between being polite and authoritative, without sounding crude and uncivil. It is possible that the addressee has defaulted on the payment due to a personal crisis of some sort. In such a case it is important that you be understanding while drafting the letter.