How to write a breach of contract letter

A breach of contract letter needs to be clear, professional, and polite.

It should include the details of both parties, information about the breach in question, and a suggestion for resolution. 

We get into the nitty-gritty below. 

When would you send a demand letter for breach of contract?

A breach of contract is when an individual or company doesn’t hold up their end of an agreement.

Any failure to carry out the terms of the contract may count as a breach. 

Unfortunately, needing to send a demand letter for breach of contract is not uncommon. 

If a business or individual break a contract, most companies will offer them a grace period to give them a chance to fix the issue before sending out an official letter.

You might first try to resolve the problem informally over the phone or in person, by email, or by letter.

As a rule, a demand letter isn’t something you’d send straight off the bat at the first sign of a transgression. 

However, if you’ve tried to resolve the issue to no avail, it might now be time to draft one.

Most demand letters are sent only once informal attempts to fix the situation have failed.

They’re usually a final attempt at resolution before a civil court is involved. You should only use them when all other communication attempts have failed.

Demand letters are useful for creating a legal paper trail to show you’ve legitimately attempted to resolve the situation and given the other party ample time to remedy the breach.

What must you include in any sample demand letter for breach of contract?

A demand letter for breach of contract should include the following:

  • Your and the recipient’s details (e.g. company names and addresses, registration numbers, etc.). 
  • Important details of the contract in question, including things like significant dates, the parties involved, the type of agreement, and any reference numbers.
  • A description of the breach. This should be factual information demonstrating how the other party has failed to fulfill their obligations.
  • Proof a breach has occurred, such as emails, receipts, and any other documents that support your case. 
  • The consequences of the breach. These might include financial losses, missed business opportunities, etc. A breach could even, in some cases, invalidate a contract.
  • Applicable laws to support your claim of a breach, as well as relevant contract sections on the subject of the breach.
  • Ways to resolve the issue, such as monetary compensation or taking particular actions, like carrying out the contract as agreed.
  • A deadline to resolve the breach. 

Your letter should remain polite and professional throughout. 

How to write a breach of contract letter: A step-by-step guide

Here’s a rundown of how to write a breach of contract letter. 

  1. Insert the names of the parties involved in the breach of contract. If you don’t have a contract per se but rather another form of agreement, summarize the purpose of this in brief.
  2. Enter the date of effect for your contract. If there isn’t one, enter the date on which the contract was signed.
  3. In simple and clear terms, explain how the other party has breached the agreement. Include references to the terms that were breached, quoting relevant sections of the contract, and detail how the other party was in breach of said term(s).
  4. List the responsibilities and obligations you deem to be unmet, and explain how the other party is in breach of them. 
  5. Insert a deadline by which the other party must fix the issue. This should be set in accordance with the type of breach (e.g. take into consideration both the urgency of the required resolution and the time it’s likely to take to solve).
  6. If there’s a written remedy period stipulated in your contract, signpost the other party to this.
  7. Include how you would like the issue to be remedied.
  8. Finally, attach any documents that support your letter and provide evidence of the breach. 

Examples of how (and how not) to serve demand letters

When you serve a demand letter, you need to make sure it’s sent to the recipient in a legally acceptable way and with proof of delivery. 

These are some popular ways to send demand letters.

Tracked and signed mail

You can send your letter via tracked mail that requires a signature upon receipt.

This method provides proof of postage. You should not send letters via the post without this. 

Courier service

Having your letter hand-delivered to the other party is another option and means having a neutral third party witness the letter’s receipt.

You could request that the recipient sign to acknowledge the letter has arrived.

Be sure to choose a reputable company that won’t just leave this at their door.

Process server

You can also hire a professional process server who’s trained to deliver legal documents.

They can provide a certificate of service as proof the letter was delivered.

Email with acknowledgment

Additionally, some contracts allow for online communication.

If this is the case, you could send your demand letter via email with an acknowledgment of receipt request.

This helps ensure you receive read receipts and delivery confirmation.

Never email without an acknowledgment request.

Protect yourself from breach of contract with PandaDoc

PandaDoc offers a whole host of templates for your email and letter needs.

Head to our site today to download templates for free, and use these alongside your contract management software for maximal ease of use and streamlined legal processes.