Complaint Letter Format – Topics, Examples, Tips, Samples
What is a Complaint Letter?
How many times has it happened that you bought a product and it turned out to be defective? How many times did you avail a public service and were left dissatisfied? Or, did you ever notice any problematic practice taking place at a public place? What do you do in such situations? Most of the times, we do not take any action in such situations because of which the problem doesn’t get the attention it deserves and hence, negligence increases.
The most common way to address such problems and to make sure that your raised voice is heard, is to write a letter to the concerned authorities. Sometimes, the associated organization may not be aware about the troublesome issues which make it the crying need of time to report them.
A Complaint Letter is a type of letter written to address any type of wrong-doing, offence, grievance, resentment arising out of a product, service, etc. It is used to raise your concern about unfair things and seek a productive outcome. It is a fundamental right and duty of a citizen to seek justice arising out of any injustice, and the first step toward it is, filing a Complaint. It inspires other troubled consumers, influences the concerned authorities to take proper action and makes the defaulters more liable, responsible and responsive.
It can be of the following types-
- Personal Complaint letter- The type of complaint letter you write on your own individual level pertaining to your individual grievances is referred to as personal complaint letter.
- Professional Complaint letter- It is that type of complaint letter that is written on the behalf of the organisation pertaining to issues that are affecting the organisation as a whole.
Topics for writing a Complaint Letter
- Incomplete or defective order
- Abnormal delay in sending the consignment
- The goods arrive in a damaged condition
- The goods are different from what were ordered
- Quantity of goods is not what was ordered
- Goods are delivered at the wrong address
- Work undertaken is done unsatisfactorily
- Misbehaviour of staff or salesman
- Mistake in preparing the invoice
- Defective packing that might lead to the damage of goods in transit
- Mistakes in a bill or reminders for payment after the bill has been paid, etc
- Wrong-doing in public.
- Rash driving of the DTC drivers.
- Poor treatment of street dogs
- Any other
Class 10 English writing skills – Complaint Letter Marking scheme
(Sender’s address, date, Receiver’s address, subject/heading, salutation, complimentary close)
NOTE- No marks are awarded if only format is given.
Format of a Complaint Letter
SENDER’s ADDRESS- The sender’s address is usually put on the top left-hand corner of the page.
DATE- The sender’s address is followed by the date just below it, i.e. on the left side of the page. This is the date at which the letter is being written. It is to be written in expanded form.
RECEIVER’s ADDRESS- Whether to write “To” above the address depends on the writer’s preference. Make sure you write the title/name/position etc of the receiving official, as the first line of the address.
SALUTATIONS- This is where you greet the person you are addressing the letter to. Bear in mind that it is a formal letter, so the greeting must be respectful and not too personal. The general greetings used in formal letters are “Sir” or “Madam”.
SUBJECT- Then we sum up the purpose of writing the letter in one line. This helps the receiver focus on the subject of the letter in one glance. It is important to underline the subject.
BODY- This is the main content of the letter. It is either divided into three paragraphs or two paragraphs if the letter is briefer. The tone of the content should be formal. Do not use any offensive language. Another point to be kept in mind is that the letter should be concise and to the point. And always be respectful and considerate in your language. It should include-
- Short introduction paragraph- Provide details about the product or service that is the subject of the complaint. Include dates, location and the specifications about the item or service.
- State the issue with item or service. Provide details as to the cause. This may include malfunction, billing issues, details that were not disclosed, etc.
- Indicate how you would like them to resolve your problem. Provide specifics about what you’re seeking.
- Indicate you are including copies of transaction document.
- Indicate you look forward to their reply within a specific time period.
Indicate that they can contact you about the issue and provide your contact details
COMPLIMENTARY CLOSE- At the end of your letter, we write a complimentary closing. The words “Yours Faithfully” or “Yours Sincerely” are used.
SIGNATURE- Here finally you sign your name. And then write your name in block letters beneath the signature followed by your designation. This is how the recipient will know who is sending the letter.
Tips for writing a Complaint Letter
- Although the motive of complaint letter is to vent out your grievance and frustration, it is imperative that you use a tone which is polite and simple. Try to be formal and avoid using offensive and disrespectful words.
- Make sure that you introduce yourself properly.
- The purpose of writing should be loud and clear.
- Do not deviate from the topic and write to-the-point.
- Make sure you adhere to the format as it carries marks.
- Underline the subject of the letter with a pencil. Also, underlining the main points is very important, but it is advisable that you do it after finishing your exam. Use a pencil and scale for underlining.
- Make sure you double check for grammatical accuracy and spellings. They carry marks.
- Leave adequate number of lines between paragraphs to make it look clean.
- Presentation is very important.
- Read a lot of letters to get an idea.
Solved questions on Complaint Letter
QUESTION: Write a letter to M/s. Oxford Publishing House, London complaining that the books sent by them were not those you had ordered for. Ask for replacement. You are Varun Joshi, Sector-20, Chandigarh.
February 20, 2019
M/s. Oxford Publishing House
Consumer Complaint Division
Subject- Complaint regarding receipt of wrong set of books.
On February 1, 2019 I bought a book set (Order No. 000154) to be delivered to Chandigarh, Sector-20.
To my dismay, I have not received the set I ordered for and have instead, received the wrong book set. I am highly disappointed.
To resolve the problem, I would appreciate it if you could replace the wrong book set with the one originally ordered. Please let me know as soon as possible what action you propose to take.I look forward to hearing from you within the next ten days.
Enclosed are copies of the transaction document and the receipt.
I look forward to your reply and a resolution to my problem and will wait until the aforementioned time before seeking help from a consumer protection agency or the Better Business Bureau. Please contact me at the above address or by phone at 098100XXXXX.
Enclosure(s)- Copy of receipt and transaction docs.
QUESTION: You are Sanjeet of 122, Arjun Nagar, New Delhi. A number of scooters and cars are parked in your locality without any order, causing blockage of the streets. Write a letter to the local Secretary of the Resident’s Association complaining against this problem.
122, Arjun Nagar
February 20, 2019
Subject- Complaint regarding the issue of bad parking habits in the locality.
I would like to drive your attention to the bad parking habits of residents in our locality. It is
resulting in a lot of chaos and no place for parking for those who come back late.
Despite defining the area assigned to each vehicle, cars are parked amidst two parking spots.
One vehicle occupies the space for 2-3 vehicles leading to mismanagement. Two-wheelers
are placed nowhere near the allotted zone. This creates problem for other people as they
have to then spend a lot of time finding parking spots in other localities. It induces
frustration and tension for safety of vehicles.
Various notices and warnings have been given to the rule-violators, but to our dismay, no
betterment can be seen. I request you to take strict action as this is leading to fights
between the residents. An effective and speedy action is expected considering the depth of
A concerned citizen
QUESTION: Write a letter to the in-charge of text-books section of NCERT, New Delhi complaining about the non-availability of text books even one month after beginning of new session. You are Rohit Rana reading in St. Xavier’s school, Delhi.
St. Xavier’s School
May 1, 2018
Subject- Complaint regarding non-availability of textbooks.
This is to bring to your notice that even after a month of commencement of classes; latest
NCERT textbooks are not available at any bookstore.
Students have to attend the school without textbooks. Some are borrowing the older
versions of their seniors with out-dated syllabus. This is resulting in problems in learning and
understanding. The lectures teachers are delivering are not having an effective impact on the
Books play an important part in learning and Sir/Madam; I hope you understand the
intensity of the situation. I request you to undertake a quick action in making the books
available as soon as possible. I hope my complaint does not fall into deaf ears.
QUESTION: Write a letter to M/s. H.M.T. Corporation Chandigarh, complaining that the wrist watch you recently bought from them does not function properly and ask for replacement. You are Dipti/ Deepak Gupta, 450, Sector 20, Chandigarh.
March 1, 2018
M/s. H.M.T. Corporation
Customer Complaint Division
Subject- Complaint regarding functioning of watch and its replacement
On February 27, 2018, I bought a Titan Watch (Model No. 2356) worth Rs. 5500 from your store.
Unfortunately, your product has not performed well. The watch doesn’t work half the time despite several attempts at changing its battery. I am highly disappointed because such act of neglect is not expected from such a renowned store.
To resolve the problem, I would appreciate you changing the watch with a new fully functioning model. I have the receipt intact. Enclosed are the copies of receipt along with the guarantee card.
I look forward to your reply and a resolution to my problem and will wait until a week before seeking help from a consumer protection agency. Please contact me at the above address or by phone at 098100XXXXX.
Enclosure(s): 1. Receipt
2. Guarantee card
QUESTION: Write a letter to the editor of a local daily complaining against the school-bus drivers for rash-driving and overcrowding of buses causing risk to the lives of innocent school children. You are Dipti/ Deepak, C-4C Janakpuri, New Delhi.
February 19, 2018
Mahatma Gandhi Marg
Subject- Regarding reckless driving of school-bus drivers
Through the columns of your esteemed newspaper, I wish to draw the attention of the
concerned authorities towards the grave issue of rash driving being done by school bus
drivers that pose a threat to the lives of innocent school children and trespassers.
Driving in a zigzag manner on packed roads, crossing speed-limits, not following traffic lights
has become very common. Despite such strict regulations regarding speed, none of these
drivers seem to follow them. This shows that there is lack of implementation. This is a
menace to other road users as the bus drivers that drive at high speed might crush down
whoever comes in their way.
By addressing this issue, it is hoped that the public awareness towards the dangerous
of reckless driving can be raised. It is also the time for the traffic authorities to take
strongermeasures against the reckless drivers, which includes levying heavy fines and
forfeiting of their licenses if they are found guilty of breaching the traffic rules.