The first step in doing so is to write to your employer. You should set out what your complaint is, with enough detail for your employer to be able to investigate it .
It’s hard to know where to start when writing a complaint letter. If our inbox is any indication, this difficulty manifests itself in free-form rants and confusion about what to say. It doesn’t have to be that way: simply stating the facts and explaining why the company should help you is enough. If you aren’t much of a wordsmith, Consumerist is here to help.
Here’s an example letter, based on a recent successful complaint to a car manufacturer that crossed our desk recently. We’ve obscured the details, but the overall format of the letter remains the same.
The summary. If you can’t sum your problem up in two or three sentences, have someone else read your e-mail and do it for you. As Consumerist’s tipline reader, I cannot emphasize enough the importance of getting your point across before the letter-reader’s eyes glaze over.
In the first paragraph, put your problem and suggested resolution. Then get on with the details.
742 Evergreen Terrace
Springfield, USA 23456
July 19, 2014
Hoverbike Corporation of America
Attn: Customer Service
P.O. Box 1578
Kabletown, WV 25414
Dear Hoverbike Corporation:
I am writing to your company about a problem with my Hoverbike, a 2012 Skylark model. I began to have trouble staying aloft a few months ago, and this week the height control module completely failed. While the bicycle is a few months out of warranty, I believe that this occurred because of a design flaw in the Skylark, and I am asking that your company cover or share with me the cost of the required repair.
Next are the details: who, what, where, when? Include addresses, store numbers, and serial numbers if applicable to your situation. Here you can add more details about your incident or problem and elaborate on what you recounted in the opening sentences if you need to.
My parents purchased my Hoverbike (serial number 118532C423) for me on April 21, 2012 from our local authorized Hoverbike dealer, Krebs Cycles of Springfield. I have enjoyed riding my bicycle, but also taken good care of it, performing all recommended maintenance, keeping it meticulously clean, not hovering over bodies of water, and not riding recklessly.
After researching this specific problem and talking to other Hoverbike owners, I have learned that this is a common issue with Hoverbikes manufactured before 2013. I believe that the failure of this module was not due to neglect or error on my part. I am asking that the Hoverbike Corporation cover in full or share with me the cost of this repair.
I have enclosed a work order from my mechanic that details the repairs needed on my bicycle.
This next section is optional, but often helpful: discuss how your problem goes against the product’s branding and marketing, and also your relationship with the brand.
Of course, don’t feel the need to explain your relationship to the brand if you don’t really have a history of using their products or friends or family who do. Yet consider the product’s branding and marketing and how it relates to your situation: does the company tout its notebook computers’ portability while your own battery won’t charge, tethering you to your desk? Has a travel website that advertises itself as convenient and integrated caused serious problems with your travel plans? Mention any such contrasts if they apply.
Hoverbike’s reputation and marketing emphasize your bicycles’ durability, reliability, and safety. Before this mechanical failure, I was very pleased with my Hoverbike, and in a few years I will need to upgrade to a larger one as I grow, but now I hesitate to choose one. My brother and sister also own Hoverbikes that are functioning perfectly, and they aren’t so sure that that they will stick with the brand after watching my experiences with the mechanical failure of my Hoverbike.
If your marketing campaigns are any indication, I am your target customer, a young girl who is allowed to explore her town on her own and use her bicycle for travel and recreational rides. More importantly, I am eight years old and look forward to a future of eco-conscious commuting. I hope to have many decades of cycling ahead of me, and I want to continue riding Hoverbikes in the future. Please restore my faith in your brand, stand behind your product, and cover the cost of this repair.
Thank you for taking the time to read this letter.
That’s it! It can also help in some cases to give the company a reasonable deadline to respond to you, and to outline any other acceptable resolutions. Telling the company what you want is an important starting point, even if what you want is only an apology.
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Editor's Note: This article originally appeared on Consumerist.
If you can, write to the agency rather than making a complaint over the telephone. This means there is a written record of your complaint and the.
Avoid foul language. It will erode your credibility.
Don’t ask to be compensated for lost time. You may have wasted several hours on a defective product or waiting for a service, but demanding to be reimbursed for it will be seen as being unreasonable, Mr. Goodman said.
Mr. Goodman recommended getting the name of anyone who responds (even it’s just a first name) and note any case number assigned to your complaint. If you don’t get one, ask for it. You want some way to reference your issue in the future, without explaining your issue all over again. You also want to make sure you have records of who promised what and when, so no one can pretend those conversations never happened.
An email or web-based form you complete will get routed to a low-level customer care center or outside contractor, Mr. Goodman said.
To improve the chances of a response, mail or email your complaint to the company’s president or other executives. You can search online for company contacts and addresses and on the professional networking site LinkedIn, he said.
Consumerist calls this approach the Executive Email Carpet Bomb, a well-written message to the right group of corporate executives. Keep it short, polite and use it as a last resort. Even if the executive themselves doesn’t address it, they’ll likely forward it to an assistant or customer service manager who will.
It may be tempting to blast a company on its Facebook page or on Twitter, but doing so will not necessarily fix your problem.
“Social media is really about shaming the company into taking action,” Ms. Yarrow wrote. “If you think the company is honorable and will help if they know the trouble they’ve caused, don’t use social media.”
If direct contact fails, post on rating sites like Yelp or Angie’s List, where other consumers will look for feedback on the company that’s wronged you, Ms. Yarrow wrote. Consider the company’s Twitter or Facebook as a last resort. Check their accounts first to make sure they actually conduct customer service there. Many companies have special accounts for support, while others just direct customers to call or email instead.
Always try to resolve a problem with a business before seeking help from a consumer protection agency. You can do this by speaking directly with the salesperson or manager or if this fails, by writing a complaint letter.
When writing a complaint letter you should:
Use this tool to develop a complaint letter that you can print or email to the business. You can vary it to fit your particular problem.
Write a complaint letter
Below is an example of a complaint letter:
RE: COMPLAINT ABOUT FAULTY TELEVISION CABINET PURCHASED AT CABINET WORLD ON 15 DECEMBER 2016
I am unhappy with the quality of a television cabinet I bought at 5 Street on 15 December and I am writing to seek a replacement.
The cabinet doors do not open and shut properly and the stain on the cabinet is uneven, with one half darker than the other. The cabinet was delivered on 30 December and I noticed this problem as soon as I unpacked it from the box.
The cabinet is not of acceptable quality and does not match the sample cabinet I was shown in store. I would like you to replace it with one of the same quality and finish as the sample and arrange for return of the faulty cabinet at no cost.
I have attached a photocopy of my receipt as proof of purchase.
I would like to have this problem fixed quickly please. If I do not hear from you within 10 days, I will lodge a formal complaint with Consumer Affairs in my state.
You can contact me on 1234 5678 during working hours or after hours on 123 456 789 to discuss this matter further.
Enclosed: Copy of the receipt for television cabinet
Repair, replace, refund
Obtain a copy of the Complaint Reporting Form by calling the college office at The Health Professions Act requires that complaints be submitted in writing and.
If you have problems with an item or service you purchased, you have the right to complain. If working with the company doesn’t get results, you can contact a government or nonprofit consumer organization to look into your case. Use these steps to get started.
To file a complaint against a company, first gather your records: sales receipts, warranties, contracts, or work orders from the purchase.
Then, print out email messages or logs of any contact you've had with the seller about the purchase.
There are several things you can do to try to resolve an issue before seeking legal help:
Contact a salesperson or customer service representative. You can find a company’s customer service contact information on their website. Look for "contact us," "customer service," "about us," "terms and conditions," or "privacy statement."
If you can’t solve your issue through them, you can go higher up to a supervisor, manager, or the company’s corporate headquarters.
Use this sample complaint letter as an example. You can also use USA.gov's complaint letter wizard to write and download a complaint letter.
If you still can’t solve your issue by contacting the seller, government and nonprofit consumer organizations may be able to help you:
File a complaint with your local consumer protection office or the state regulatory agency or licensing board that has jurisdiction over the seller.
Notify the Better Business Bureau (BBB) in your area about your problem. The BBB tries to resolve your complaints against companies.
Some federal agencies accept complaints about companies. While these agencies may not resolve your problem, your complaint helps them investigate fraud.
If the purchase was made online across international borders, you may also file a complaint with econsumer.gov.
Dispute resolution programs are ways to solve disagreements between buyers and sellers, without going to court. Some companies and industries offer programs to solve disputes. You can also contact your state's attorney general or consumer protection office, law school clinics, or the Better Business Bureau to find a dispute resolution program.
Mediation, arbitration, and conciliation are the three common types of dispute resolution. During mediation, both sides involved in the dispute meet with a neutral third party, a mediator, to create their own agreement jointly. In arbitration, the third party, an arbitrator, decides how to settle the problem. Conciliation is similar to arbitration; however, you and the other party meet with the conciliator separately (not a group meeting). Request a copy of the rules of any program before deciding to participate. You should ask questions like:
An informal guide to: Writing complaint responses. As a service provider, when you receive a letter of complaint about your like a report.