Warn a Customer About Credit Suspension or Penalization - Letters

Example Letter #1

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You are a valued customer and we have appreciated your business through the years. Reviewing your file today, I noticed that you are 90 days past due on your June 20, 2018 bill. As you know, all invoices are due 30 days net. We have called your office three times in the last month regarding your account. I must ask you to pay your account in full by October 31, 2018, or I will turn your account over to our collection agency. I am willing to work with you, but I can do nothing unless you respond.

Example Letter #2

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Thank you for patronizing Doe stores over the years. Doe values each customer's business. Unfortunately, the bank has returned two of your checks to us because of insufficient funds. We are charging you a $25 returned check fee on each check. We regret that we will no longer be able to accept your checks, although we welcome your cash or major credit cards. If you would like to discuss this matter with a Doe representative, phone us at 555-5555. We appreciate the opportunity to continue business with you.

Example Letter #3

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Have you forgotten us? Sometimes it is easy to overlook our bills. We value your patronage, and hope to be able to continue our business relationship. It has come to our attention, however, that your most recent invoice is 90 days past due. You have not responded to our two previous letters. If we do not receive a minimum payment within 15 days, we will be forced to cancel your credit line with Walfield Lumber and turn the account over to collections. Your payment must be at least $450, ($400 minimum plus two $25 late fees). If you have sent a payment, kindly disregard this letter. If you cannot make a minimum payment by the prescribed date, please telephone me at 555-5555 to make other arrangements. I am confident we can come to an equitable solution.

Example Letter #4

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I have enclosed a copy of your recent order which you charged to your credit card. Unfortunately your credit card was not approved. Because I am sure this is the result of an oversight or some mistake on the bank's part, please call me at 555-5555 and tell me how to proceed. You may also send a check or money order payable to the company:

Doe Corporation

1600 Main Street

Springfield, Kansas 12345

Your check or money order should be for the amount of your recent purchase, which you will find highlighted at the top of the copy of the enclosed order. Please include your customer ID number with all correspondence.

Your immediate attention to this matter will be greatly appreciated.

Example Letter #5

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We value our association with you and have enjoyed serving your needs. However, unless we receive payment for the $378.13 outstanding balance on your account by January 30, we will have to suspend your credit privileges. If you would like to speak to one of our customer representatives, please call 1-800-555-5555 between 8:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m. I am confident you will want to work this out so we can continue to do business.

Letter-Writing Tips

When warning a customer about suspending his or her credit or penalizing his or her account, be calm and courteous. Let the customer know that you would rather not have to take any action. Be concise and specific.

Step-by-Step Guide

1 Start positively. Assure the customer that you have valued his or her business and that you wish to keep him or her as a client.

Sentences
  • We appreciate the many orders your company has placed with us over the past six years and hope to provide you with the parts you need.
  • I have been happy to continue business with you in the last three months.
  • We know that there are many pharmaceutical companies on the market, and are grateful that you have chosen to do business with us.
  • We hope that the computer hardware we shipped to you last year has been reliable and has served your needs.
  • I have always appreciated the large volume of business that you have given us and have steered our way.
Phrases
  • appreciate your choosing us
  • are a valued customer
  • business you have steered our way
  • have been very happy to
  • have enjoyed working with you
  • have always appreciated
  • have appreciated your
  • hope to continue to
  • hope to keep providing your
  • is very important to us
  • large volume of business
  • mutually beneficial association
  • our long association
  • over these past few
  • profitable for both of us
  • relationship with you
  • serving your needs is
  • take great care to
  • to do business with you
  • value our association with

2 Tell the client what action you plan to take and why.

Sentences
  • Because you have been delinquent on the last two bills, we regret to inform you that we will charge you a late fee of $150 on your next bill.
  • We have not received a payment from you for six months, and you have failed to acknowledge our three written notices (May 7, June 7, July 7). Unless we hear from you within two weeks, we will terminate your line of credit and send your account to a collection agency.
  • Your last payment (check #1111, dated Sept. 1) was below the minimum amount, so your next bill will include a $25 service charge.
  • Enclosed you will find a statement for services rendered. You were to have paid the balance of the account no later than thirty days after we finished the job. Our records show that we finished job # 33-31, weatherizing your office, on March 4. If we do not hear from you by July 15, we will be forced to turn your account over to Doe & Associates, our collection agency.
  • If you do not send us the $300 you owe by the end of this month, we will terminate your line of credit.
Phrases
  • account has become delinquent
  • balance is due and payable
  • enclosed is a statement
  • entire balance has therefore become due
  • failed to pay the minimum amount
  • have not received payment
  • have to suspend your credit privileges
  • if we receive your payment by
  • kindly send payment promptly
  • last payment received was
  • late charge has been applied to
  • liable for a late charge
  • next bill will include
  • our payment terms are
  • regret to inform you
  • retain an unblemished credit standing
  • send your account for collection
  • terminate your line of credit
  • unless we hear from you by
  • will be forced to turn your account over to
  • will appear on your next bill

3 Close the letter on a positive note. Offer to do whatever you can to help. Assure the reader that you believe he or she will rectify the situation.

Sentences
  • If you cannot make the full payment, please contact us so that we can make suitable arrangements for payment.
  • We trust that you will heed this notice so that we can continue to do business together.
  • Should you need more time, please contact John Doe in the Credit Department and he will discuss the situation with you.
  • To facilitate your response, I have included a self-addressed stamped envelope. I hope to hear from you soon.
  • If you need to rearrange your payment schedule, please give us a call.
Phrases
  • accommodate you so far as we can
  • can make arrangements
  • can work out an arrangement
  • can possibly rearrange your payment schedule
  • continue to do business
  • do not enjoy dealing with you in this manner
  • for your convenience
  • have enclosed a postage-paid reply envelope
  • hope to continue our working relationship
  • hope to avoid this action
  • if you need to
  • if you cannot make full payment
  • keep your credit rating intact
  • please call us immediately
  • please contact us so that
  • should you need more time to
  • to facilitate your response
  • trust that you will
  • understand that unforeseen circumstances can
  • willing to discuss the situation with

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