Respond to a False Accusation from a Government Agency | Letter-Writing Guide


Most persons in this situation will resolve the problem through explanation and negotiation before going to the expense of litigation. Use this letter to correct factual errors and misunderstandings in an attempt to end the conflict.


1. Acknowledge having received the accusing document and very briefly summarize the essence of the complaint.

  • I have received your letter dated August 23 itemizing Ms. Doe's allegations of sexual harassment and discrimination.
  • Your bill for additional tax money, based on what you describe as a failure to report interest on a private loan, is inaccurate.
  • I just received your "notice of violation" on an apartment I own at 1600 Main Street in Springfield. The notice says that I must remove a recently installed floodlight near the garage because it causes a "nuisance" in the neighborhood.
  • We received your complaint dated September 15, concerning violation of certain OSHA regulations at our downtown Springfield construction site.
  • I received your notice claiming that I am delinquent in paying my property tax on my primary residence.
  • accusing me of
  • allegations of
  • am concerned about
  • appears to be an error
  • based on inaccurate information
  • concerning violation of
  • has filed a complaint against us
  • have received your
  • have forwarded
  • informing us that
  • just received your
  • must have sent it in error
  • regarding our failure
  • requesting me to
  • thank you for your letter
  • troubles me
  • what you describe as
  • your notice concerning
  • your enquiry about
  • your bill for additional
  • your letter of
  • your letter claiming that

2. Give facts and details of the situation from your perspective, casting the problem into a new or different light.

  • When Ms. Doe was dismissed from our employment for gross incompetence and failing a random drug test, she threatened us with the same legal harassment that we are now getting from you. Rest assured that we are fully prepared to defend ourselves against these charges.
  • It is obvious that my social security number was wrongly used, and the matter can be resolved very quickly by contacting the person who claims to have paid this money to me.
  • I would like to remind your office that I installed that light three months ago in direct response to another "notice of violation" which said that a floodlight was required. I had the light professionally installed (at considerable expense) according to the specifications you supplied.
  • Most of these violations are minor, but I have instructed the site supervisor to address the problems immediately. Other "violations," however, seem to be an inexperienced and overzealous inspector's misinterpretations.
  • I have no idea how this mistake occurred, but I have a receipt that shows I paid the full amount before the deadline. I am enclosing a photocopy.
  • a simple misunderstanding
  • according to our records
  • after examining the documents
  • appears clear that
  • are not required to
  • as required by law
  • complaint is without basis
  • enclosed is a copy of
  • fully prepared to defend ourselves against
  • have addressed the problems previously
  • have receipts for
  • have consistently conformed to
  • in accordance with the regulations
  • inexperienced and overzealous
  • must point out to you
  • resolve the matter easily
  • seem to have misinterpreted
  • trust it will not be necessary to
  • welcome to examine our
  • well within the legal limits
  • would be happy to
  • would like to remind you that

3. Close by reiterating your belief that the case is without merit.

  • Before you waste a lot of public money on this case, I would suggest a thorough investigation. We are happy to cooperate fully.
  • I will appreciate your looking into this matter from your end because I have absolutely no way of tracking down the identity of a person known to me only by the social security number you provided.
  • I am happy to comply with all laws and regulations pertaining to building codes and rental property, but I don't see how I can obey two laws which directly contradict each other.
  • I will welcome a visit by an experienced inspector and am sure that he will find that all is in order.
  • I trust this evidence is sufficient for you to correct your records. I also trust that you will delete my name from forthcoming delinquency reports.
  • a thorough investigation
  • ask for your assistance in
  • before wasting further
  • could save a great deal of time by
  • find that all is in order
  • happy to cooperate with
  • happy to answer your questions
  • happy to comply with
  • if you have any questions
  • if you need any further
  • kindly update your records
  • may we suggest that
  • please contact me immediately
  • sorting this out
  • spending taxpayers' money on
  • this awkward situation
  • trust this information is sufficient to
  • will welcome an inspection
  • would appreciate your looking into this matter

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