A contract is a legal agreement between two parties where both parties have an obligation to the other. If one of the parties does not fulfill his end of the bargain, a breach of contract has occurred, and the injured party has the right to complain and perhaps even pursue additional actions against the offending individual. This often includes sending a breach of contract letter, or notice.
Steps to Complain about Breach of Contract
Check the Original Documents
Have a Conversation
Organize Key Points for Your Contract Letter
Write a Breach of Contract Letter
Deliver the Notice
Step 1 – Check the Original Documents
When you suspect that someone is not holding up their end of an agreement, you may be dealing with a breach of contract. Before you can confirm that there is a legal issue, however, you must review the original contract.
It is likely you read the contract carefully when you signed it the first time, but a close reading when a problem arises is always warranted. You may discover some fine print that you missed the first time that reveals there isn’t much you can do about a frustrating situation. More ideally, you may realize that you are exactly right to be upset and that a clear breach has occurred.
Step 2 – Have a Conversation
Before you call up your lawyer or sit down to write a breach of the contract notice, have a conversation with the other member of the original agreement. There is always a chance that there was simply a miscommunication or a problem that is easily resolved without resorting to more formal means.
Touch base with the other party and clearly state that you are concerned about the unfulfilled obligation. With any luck, the situation can be resolved easily at this point. Chances are, however, that you’ve already tried this step, presumably multiple times, and you’re ready to pursue more serious measures.
Step 3 – Gather Information
Writing a breach of contract letter requires specific information presented in a clear way. This means you will need to gather the specifics about the original contract and the actual breach of the agreement.
For example, if you signed a sales agreement to deliver furniture and you haven’t been paid for the furniture after delivery, the date of the signed agreement, the delivery date, the original terms of the contract and any contact you’ve made since the original contract are all relevant and should be included in your breach of contract letter.
Step 4 – Organize Key Points for Your Contract Letter
A breach of contract letter is the formal letter used to notify the other party that the original agreement is not on track. In fact, as you reread your original contract, you may find that you are legally obligated to send a breach of contract letter before pursuing any additional measures.
As you prepare to write a breach of contract letter, be sure of the following:
- Your original contract is signed and in good order.
- The other party has not performed their terms from the original contract.
- You are in good standing on your part of the contract.
- You are able to specifically state how obligations are not being fulfilled.
- You have a proposed resolution to the breach – either a continuation of the contract or a termination.
Step 5 – Write a Breach of Contract Letter
When you are ready to write a breach of contract letter, there are many examples to simplify the process. Learning how to write a breach of contract letter is as simple as following a set format.
A breach of contract letter is a formal letter that is typically written on letterhead or, at the very least, is written in a format to include both the sender and the recipient’s addresses.
The bulk of the letter is a succinctly written account of the actual breach of contract and a proposed solution. This is the area of the letter that should include:
- The date of the original contract.
- A contract number or identifying the element.
- The action that caused the breach in contract.
- Any additional attempts to contact or resolve the issue.
- A reference to the original contract that shows the required obligation that has gone unfulfilled.
- A proposed solution to the issue.
- A statement about what actions may follow the notice if action is not taken.
The closing of the letter should include contact information as well as your full name.
As you can see below, Pissed Consumer has its own template on this site to simplify the process. You can view the full template here.
You may also download a sample letter of a complaint about a service contract below.
There are many specific types of letters for specific types of contracts. A sales or service contract will have different requirements and responsibilities than a lease, for example.
While the contracts may be different, figuring out how to write a notice of breach of contract is very similar despite the contract type. Information will need to be gathered and sorted. The original contract will be consulted and the letter will include the same information about what has not be fulfilled under the original contract and a proposed solution.
For example, another common breach of contract notice to write is a termination of the lease agreement. Despite its different name and being used for a different style of contract, the process of writing the contract letter is very similar. You can see an example of this from Biztree.com below.
Step 6 – Deliver the Notice
A well-written letter has no bearing if you fail to deliver it. There are a few ways to send a contract letter.
- You may email the letter. This option will deliver the letter quickly, and if you turn on “read receipts” may provide you with evidence that the letter was delivered at a set time and on a set day. Emailed letters, however, do run the risk of being lost or overlooked.
- You may have the letter hand-delivered. You can deliver the letter yourself or have a courier deliver it for you. This option ensures that the letter is placed in the hand of the recipient, but does not provide a receipt if additional action is pursued later.
- You may send the letter via certified mail. Perhaps your best option if additional action is required down the road, certified mail will provide you with a receipt form the postal service of when the letter was received and, if requested, a signature of the person who received it along with a date.
Step 7 – Follow Through
Often a breach of contract notice is enough to encourage the other party to get back on track. This is not always the case, and it is possible that you will need to follow through with the actions you indicated in your original letter.
This may mean securing additional legal services or pursuing your claim through the courts. Having clear documentation of writing, sending, and having your contract notice received will help your case should it move into additional legal realms. You might as well use other ways to complain about the breach of the service contract.
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