How to Write an Overdue Payment Letter

How to Write a Letter

© Ugur Akinci

A well-written overdue payment letter could be the difference between a business that gets paid on time and profits and one that goes bankrupt.

This is not an easy letter to write due to its sensitive nature. You do not want to be impolite or threatening and lose the the other person. Yet you also want to be assertive and firm within your rights and hold the other person to the other end of the bargain. It's a delicate balance act to pull off.

Here is one example of an overdue letter that you can use as a template for all your overdue payment letters, by replacing the appropriate parts with your relevant information:


October 9, 2009

Pat Brown
123 Main Street
Main Town, NY 10001

Dear Pat Brown,

When you agreed to purchase the XYZ product [service, magazine, etc.] you asked us to bill you in three easy payments of $25.99 each.

Our records show that your first payment is now overdue by 30 days.

If you believe our records are not correct we'd certainly love to hear from you to correct our records and set the matter straight.

If you've just forgotten about it we'd encourage you to send in at least the MINIMUM PAYMENT of $12.45 today, by using the SASE enclosed for your convenience. Please return your payment by October 15, 2009 so that we can credit your account immediately and you can continue to enjoy all the benefits of the XYZ product [service, magazine, etc.].

I look forward to receiving your payment soon and clearing up your account status. If this letter arrived while your check was in the mail, please disregard this note with our apologies.


A. J. White
For XYZ Corporation

P.S. You're welcomed to pay the whole BALANCE DUE at this time to prevent any future notices and keep our overhead to a minimum -- a saving which is passed directly on to you in the form of a top-notch product still offered at a very affordable price.

Last note: Be prompt, clear, but polite when writing an overdue payment letter no matter what the circumstances are.

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