Tutorial for “Write a Disagreement Letter”

Tips

Clearly state the problem and explain what you want the reader to do. Avoid accusations and threats, particularly in a first letter. If the problem remains unresolved, you may wish to state clearly in a later letter what action you will take, but only if you are prepared to follow through.

Steps

1. Refer directly to the point of disagreement.

Sentences

  • Pursuant to the notification I received on July 23, regarding my claim (#12345) on my policy (#54321), I regret to inform you that your proposed settlement is unacceptable.
  • I just wanted to let you know on an informal basis that I feel uncomfortable giving our contract to the Doe Corporation.
  • We just received your notice that our rent will increase from $555 to $655 per month, effective August 1.
  • We understand that despite many tenants' letters of protest, you plan to go ahead with a rent hike without correcting any of the lease compliance problems we mentioned in our last letter.
  • On Monday I received a rather confusing letter informing me that the article I wrote for next month's issue of The Report had been rejected because the topic was "not relevant" to the subscribers of the magazine.

Phrases

  • a notice that
  • according to the lease
  • according to my records
  • am not liable for
  • am disturbed about
  • do not understand the
  • have no recollection of
  • have enclosed a copy of
  • in accordance with
  • in spite of the
  • informing me that
  • is quite unacceptable
  • is our understanding that
  • just received your
  • may recall that
  • notified me of
  • on the basis of
  • please refer to
  • pursuant to your letter of
  • received notification that
  • seems to be an error in
  • the terms of our contract
  • understood that

2. State your disagreement. Give evidence or support for your view, if appropriate.

Sentences

  • The settlement you offered is not enough to cover the repair costs for my car that was damaged in the flood. I am enclosing photocopies of estimates from two upholstery repair shops and two auto stereo stores. To restore my car to its preflood condition, a settlement of at least $1650 is necessary.
  • I know their proposal sounds very attractive, but I doubt they can really do a good job for the cost they show in their bid. On an earlier job they gained a reputation for using inferior materials and attempting to add charges for "unforeseen expenses."
  • We protest this increase. It takes the rent price far beyond that of similar apartments in the area. Many tenants will no doubt move out.
  • Doe Apartment renters have elected my wife and me to represent their interests in this matter. We feel strongly that a rent hike at a time when the owner is not living up to his part of the rental agreement is unacceptable.
  • The letter was confusing because Jane Doe had assured me that the article would be published. I think it is very relevant in a time when government-funded benefits are the topic of much discussion. Other magazines with comparable readership have published essays on related topics.

Phrases

  • am enclosing copies of
  • an untenable situation
  • are certain that
  • a violation of
  • consider the ramifications of
  • contradicts the terms
  • does not seem fair
  • had previously assured me that
  • have you considered
  • in the long run
  • need more input
  • is not acceptable
  • long-term effects
  • may lead to
  • may give rise to
  • may initially seem attractive
  • must protest this
  • must disagree with
  • on behalf of
  • our previous agreement
  • situation certainly merits
  • this course of action
  • urge you to reconsider

3. Clearly state the outcome you desire. If appropriate, state what action you are prepared to take to protect your interests.

Sentences

  • Please review these data and send me a revised settlement offer sufficient to cover our replacement and repair costs.
  • I feel that the competing proposal would be safer. I know the bid is higher than Doe's, but in the end it would probably be worth it. I will be glad to talk about this in more detail.
  • When we moved in we were told that rent would not increase more than 5% a year. We request that you honor your word.
  • If you raise the rent in August without having repaired every item on the attached list of maintenance problems, we will begin a rent strike until all the work is done. We sincerely hope this action does not become necessary, but we are all determined to follow through if it does.
  • Please clarify for me what happened. Has the editorial policy changed since I spoke with Jane Doe? Are there other considerations of which I am unaware?

Phrases

  • a written explanation
  • a prompt correction
  • be aware that
  • honor the agreement you made
  • if necessary, call me at
  • in the light of
  • inform me of
  • it may become necessary to
  • kindly check your records
  • let me know
  • please review the
  • please clarify this
  • request that you honor
  • send written acknowledgment
  • set up an appointment
  • study the enclosed
  • trust that it will not come to
  • trust that it will not be necessary to
  • urge you to reconsider
  • wait a while before
  • will have no choice but to
  • will call you on

4. End by expressing your confidence in reaching a mutually agreeable solution.

Sentences

  • Our family has held policies with Doe Insurance for as long as I can remember, and we have always received good service. I trust you will honor this reasonable request, too.
  • I trust the right decision will prevail. Of course I will work closely with whoever gets the contract.
  • We feel you have been fair in the past, and feel confident that you will honor this request.
  • We are sure the owner will take action so a strike will not be necessary. Please contact us if you have any questions.
  • You can see why I disagree with the content of the letter. I believe you can make some sense of it for me.

Phrases

  • am confident that
  • am sure that this
  • appears to be a misunderstanding
  • can reach me at
  • can sort out quite easily
  • if you have any questions
  • if you need any more information
  • look forward to
  • please feel free to
  • resuming our mutually beneficial
  • take immediate action
  • thank you for
  • to our mutual satisfaction
  • trust that you will honor
  • trust that this will
  • will be happy to
  • will abide by your
  • would appreciate your
  • your immediate attention to
  • your attention to this matter

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