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Standard letter format

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Standard letter format
April 30, 2019 Anniversary Wishes 3 comments

make the information clear and readable. If you don't have access to a word processor, then it's fine to write by hand. Follow the same format.

Typically, a printed letter is reserved for the most important of job-related or other professional communications: recommendation letters, cover letters, resignation letters, legal correspondence, company communications, etc. Since it's such a formal mode of communication, you'll want to make sure you know to format a letter.

Proper formatting is especially important if you're sending a hard copy to the recipient rather than an email – the letter needs to fit the page properly and look good.

The following sample letter format includes the information you need to include when writing a letter, along with advice on the appropriate font, salutation, spacing, closing, and signature for business correspondence.

Sample Letter Format

Contact Information(Your contact information. If you are writing on letterhead that includes your contact information, you do not need to include it at the start of the letter.)
Your Name
Your Address
Your City, State Zip Code
Your Phone Number
Your Email Address

Contact Information (The person or company you are writing to)
City, State Zip Code

Dear Mr./Ms. Last Name: (Use a formal salutation, not a first name, unless you know the person extremely well. If you do not know the person's gender, you can write out their full name. For instance, you could write "Dear Pat Crody" instead of "Dear Mr. Crody" or "Dear Ms. Crody." Note that the person's name is always followed by a colon (:) in a business letter, and not a comma. If you do not know the recipient’s name, it’s still common (and safe) to use the old-fashioned “To Whom It May Concern:”).

The first paragraph of your letter should provide an introduction as to why you are writing so that your purpose is obvious from the very beginning.

Then, in the following paragraphs, provide more information and specific details about your request or the information you are providing.

The last paragraph of your letter should reiterate the reason you are writing and thank the reader for reviewing your request. If appropriate, it should also politely ask for a written response or for the opportunity to arrange a meeting to further discuss your request.

Handwritten Signature (for a hard copy letter – use blue or black ink to sign the letter)

Sample Letter

Download the Word Template

Sample Letter (Text Version)

Tips for Formatting Your Letter

  • When writing a letter, your letter should be simple and focused, so that the purpose of your letter is clear.
  • Single space your letter and leave a space between each paragraph. Left justify your letter.
  • Use a plain font like Arial, Times New Roman, Courier New, or Verdana. The font size should be 10 or 12 points.
  • Leave a blank line after the salutation and before the closing.
  • Business letters should always be printed on white bond paper rather than on colored paper or personal stationery.

Check for Formatting Errors and Typos

Once you have written your business letter, proofread it (using spellcheck) on the screen. Then print it out and read it through at least one more time, checking for any errors or typos. (It's often easier to spot errors on a hard copy.)

Be on the lookout for formatting errors as well, such as two paragraphs that don’t have a space in between, or lines that are indented incorrectly. Then before putting your letter in an envelope, don't forget to sign above your typed name, using blue or black ink. 

If you are using Microsoft Word or another word processing program to write your letter, there are templates available that can help you format your letter correctly. Here’s more information on free Microsoft Word letter templates. 

More Letter Writing Information

Knowing how to write business letters is an essential skill so here are several more articles for you:

If you like to learn by looking at examples, there are many types of business letters to choose from, such as cover letters, interview thank you letters, follow-up letters, job acceptance and rejection letters, resignation letters, and appreciation letters. You’ll find all those and more business and employment-related letter samples in this review of letter samples.

Nicole Thomas
35 Chestnut Street
Dell Village, Wisconsin 54101

August 1, 2018

Jason Andrews
LMK Company
53 Oak Avenue, Ste 5
Dell Village, Wisconsin 54101

Dear Jason,

I’m writing to resign my position as customer service representative, effective August 15, 2018.

I’ve recently decided to go back to school, and my program starts in early September. I’m tendering my resignation now so that I can be as helpful as possible to you during the transition.

I’ve truly enjoyed my time working with you and everyone else on our team at LMK. It’s rare to find a customer service role that offers as much opportunity to grow and learn and such a positive, inspiring team of people to grow and learn with.

I’m particularly grateful for your guidance while I was considering furthering my education. Your support has meant so much to me. 

Please let me know if there’s anything I can do to help you find and train my replacement.

Thanks, and best wishes,

Nicole Thomas

Most business letters follow an established, easy-to-learn format Follow these steps and modify as necessary to fit your company's standards.

Standard Business Letter Format

standard letter format

It’s always important to format formal letters correctly. They’re often being sent to professionals so your tone, style and wording are your chance to make a good impression.

What constitutes a formal letter? Formal letters are commonplace when sending business correspondence, contacting an individual you are yet to build a relationship with and scenarios where you’re trying to emit professionalism, such as job applications. If you’re struggling to decide, imagine meeting this person and think about how you would act. Would you shake their hand or pump their fist? If in doubt, format the first letter formally and use their response to guide how you continue to communicate.

Click here to download our free formal letter template.

How to format the top of a formal letter:

Top right: your details in this order

  • Full name and title
  • Job title
  • Full address
  • Today's date

     a. Use the full date without abbreviations i.e. October 3rd 2018

      a. Avoid using email addresses that aren’t professional i.e. [email protected]

Left-hand side: recipients details in this order

  • Full name and title
  • Company or organisation
  • Full address

Introductory line

  • Dear
  • Recipients title (when applicable)
  • Recipients full name
Tip: If you don’t know the recipient’s name, write ‘Dear Sir or Madam’.

Formatting the body of your letter:

Opening paragraph

Use your opening paragraph to introduce yourself and your reason for writing the letter. It’s crucial that your message is direct and underlines why you’re contacting the recipient. Consider this paragraph as a direct way to capture their attention.

Main body

Use this space to delve into the issues raised in the opening paragraph. Give more detail of what you’re offering or asking of the recipient, backed up by relevant information. Consider this paragraph as an exploration of the points raised in the opening paragraph.

Closing statement

Ensure that you include a closing statement that thanks the recipient for their time, knowledge or help with the discussed points. It’s good practice to include a line such as ‘please contact me at your earliest convenience’ to show your interest in communication and readiness to act.

Signing off

Signing off at the end of your letter is one of your last opportunities to make an impression. Depending on your relationship and reason for writing to the recipient, there are several options available to you. If in doubt, picture yourself as the recipient, how would you like to be addressed?

Very formal

These options are acceptable when you’re contacting someone for the first time or you’re discussing a serious issue.

  1. Yours sincerely
  2. Yours respectfully
  3. Yours truly
  4. Yours faithfully - appropriate if you don’t know the recipient’s name


These options would still be acceptable when contacting someone for the first time but demonstrate a friendlier tone.

  1. Kindest regards
  2. Kind regards
  3. Yours appreciatively

Relaxed formal

Once you’ve established a relationship with the recipient, there is no need to maintain a formal tone (unless you’re discussing a serious issue).

  1. Warm regards
  2. Best wishes
  3. With regards
  4. Thank you
  5. Best


Including your signature at the end of a formal letter displays professionalism. You can either do your signature by hand after printing the letter, or use this tool to create your digital signature.

What to avoid when you’re writing a formal letter

  1. Spelling and grammatical errors. Grammarly is a free tool you can use to proofread your work.
  2. Using contractions, i.e. ‘i’m’ should read ‘I am’. ‘That’s’ should read ‘that is’.
  3. Including unnecessary information.
  4. Making the same point multiple times
  5. Overcomplicated language, i.e. ‘the issues highlighted are indicative of future failings’ could read ‘I believe these issues will lead to a problem’.

Download our free formal letter template:

Microsoft Word Template
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Examples of business letter format.

standard letter format

Once you have fully decided to move on from your current job, the most professional thing to do is submit a resignation letter to your employer. Resignation letters allow businesses to be aware of the decision of employees to resign. This document will help them to identify their shortcomings, if there are any. More so, resignation letters can specify the remaining days of the employee in the business which can give the business time to look for possible candidates who can be placed in the position that will be vacated. Transition in relation to this matter is very important as the operations can be affected if there will be issues in the number of the workforce and if a particular function will not be done.

A resignation letter is defined as a short written document for the purpose of formally announcing to your employer or whoever the letter is submitted to your intent to leave a position currently held. Even if you have already discussed your resignation with your superiors, writing a letter is an act of courtesy that can leave the company with a clean final impression of you. Looking for samples? Check out our collection of Resignation Letter Templates on our website.

Standard Immediate Resignation Letter

Free Download

Standard Resignation Letter to Boss

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Standard Manager Resignation Letter

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Nurse Resignation Letter Template

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Standard Two Weeks Notice Resignation Letter

Free Standard Resignation Letter

Standard Resignation Letter Format

Standard Teacher Resignation Letter

Standard Director Resignation Letter

How to Write a Resignation Letter?

There’s no easy way to inform your current employer you’re leaving your post. However, the best practice is to keep professional until they find a replacement for your position. When writing your resignation letter, keep this standard format in mind to submit a professional resignation letter:

  • Header and salutation. This should contain both you and your employer’s name, title, contact information, home address, phone number, and email. You should address your employer formally using Mr. or Mrs. or Dr.
  • First paragraph. State that you are leaving the company and include the date on which your resignation will be effective.
  • Second and third paragraphs. If you want, you may state the reason why you are leaving the company, but this is not necessary. If you choose to state why you are leaving, make sure to stay positive. Show gratitude to your employer for giving you the opportunity to work for the company. You may also state here what you appreciate most about the job and the people you worked with.
  • Closing remarks and signature. Sign off formally by saying “Sincerely” or “Yours Sincerely” and then place your handwritten signature over your typed name.

For more letter templates, you may check out our collection of Formal Resignation Letter Templates.

Standard Business Resignation Letter

Standard Basic Resignation Letter

Standard Resignation Letter with Notice

Tips When Writing a Resignation Letter

  • If you don’t need to leave immediately, give the company at least two weeks notice before you resign from your job.
  • If possible, offer the employer some assistance in looking for a replacement to fill in your position.
  • Never write about frustrations on coworkers, superiors, or the company in your letter.
  • Keep your resignation letter short, simple, focused, and to the point.
  • Observe proper business letter format including a header with the company and the employer’s name.
  • Proofread your letter thoroughly before submitting it.

Why Download our Templates?

  • These templates were written professionally by knowledgeable individuals.
  • These templates can be downloaded easily and for free.
  • You can choose between Doc, Docx, and PDF formats when downloading.
  • These templates come in high resolution to assure you of clear and legible printouts.
  • These templates are fully editable when used with the appropriate software.

For resignation letters with a touch of humor, you may want to check out this collection of Funny Resignation Letter Templates.

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Writing an Effective Business Letter

standard letter format

Whenever you leave a job you're required to give a resignation letter to your employer, even if you've had a face to face discussion. A Standard resignation letter is just to confirm to your employer that you will be leaving. Short, detailed and to the point is the best way to express this.

Standard resignation letter format

The simplest way to do this is to state that you're leaving, specify the date, explain the reason of leaving and to say thanks for the opportunity.

  • Date
  • Your Address
  • Addressee details
  • Reason for leaving
  • Resignation date
  • Closing & signature

Create a resignation letter that is detailed enough to identify the reason as to why you will be leaving the company and that you will be serving your notice period. You want them to understand quick and easy that you will be leaving and proceed to carry on with the professionalism for the duration of the notice period.

  • e.g: “If there are any areas in particular you would like me to focus on during my notice period, please let me know”.

This would be a good opportunity to recognise and thank certain members from this employment who have helped you through your journey at the company.

  • e.g: “I would like to thank [Member/’s from company] for their encouragement and help throughout my employment at [Company] that has really helped shape my career thus far.”

Download our free Standard resignation letter sample


Download this template in Words or PDF format:



[Insert your name]

[Insert your Address]


[Insert date]


[Insert Recipient name]

[Insert Title]

[Insert Organisation]

[Insert Address]


Dear [Insert manager’s name],

Please accept this letter as notice of my resignation from the position of [Insert job title] at [Insert company].

As per the terms of my employment contract, i will continue to work for the company for the next [Insert notice period length], completing my employment on [Insert last day you intend to work].

I have enjoyed being a part of the team and am thankful for the opportunities you have given me during my time here. If there are any areas in particular you would like me to focus on during my notice period, please let me know.

I hope that I can rely on you for a positive reference in future.


Yours sincerely

[Insert your name]


Don't think that this template is right for you? View our other downloadable resignation letter samples 

Why should you have a detailed resignation letter?

Has it come to that time in your life when you are changing career or taking a new path? Got to create a resignation letter but you don’t want to come across negative? Well you are in the right place, for your guide to create a professional detailed resignation letter to leave on great terms.

If your experience working at the company has been what you expected or maybe not so expected and you know it’s time to part ways. Make sure your resignation letter still follows conventions as you want to make sure you maintain good relations post-employment at the company.

Can you put too much detail in a resignation letter?

It’s good to recognise what you shouldn’t put into a detailed resignation letter.

  • Don’t add in any negative context that has reflected on the reason for you leaving. This may affect the relationship between you and the employer for the rest of your time with that company.
  • Try to be to-the-point. The employer doesn’t want to have to take a lot of time reading the letter. This is more just for contract and policy reasons.


Things to remember:

  • Professionalism is key
  • Stay positive
  • Make sure your letter is following the right conventions
  • Follow the procedure regarding the company you are currently employed in


Business letters are typically used for procuring new business opportunities and promotional activities. They are utilized for explaining any products that are.

standard letter format
Written by Goltirisar
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