Sample Cease Communications Letter To Creditor

Most people have good intentions of paying their bills. Unfortunately, bad things happen to good people. If you are swimming in consumer debt, you're probably familiar with debt collection agencies and their tactics.

Some debt collectors work hard to help debtors pay their outstanding bills. There are also collection agents who see nothing wrong with calling your phone number 10 times a day. If you're dealing with harassing debt collection behavior, a cease-and-desist letter may be just what you need.

Here, we'll explain what a "cease communications" letter is and offer a sample cease-and-desist letter that can serve as a template for your own communications with debt collection agencies.

What Is a Cease-and-Desist Letter?

A cease-and-desist letter is a formal letter requesting debt collectors to stop contacting you about a debt you owe. It prevents original creditors and debt collection agencies from communicating with you except to notify you that they have your letter and will stop communications.

Debt collection laws such as the Federal Fair Debt Collections Practices Act (FDCPA) require debt collectors to stop communicating with you after getting the letter. So, you must confirm the debt collector's address.

What Information Should You Include in Your Cease-and-Desist Letter?

To be enforceable, your cease-and-desist letter must include specific information. Otherwise, the creditor or debt collection agency will allege that you never asked them to stop further contact.

Some of the information you must put in your letter includes:

  • Your full name
  • The name of the original creditor (if known)
  • Any account numbers associated with the debt
  • Contact information for your attorney (if you have one)
  • Specific language instructing the recipient to cease all communications, including phone calls, voicemails, letters, emails, and text messages

Requesting a validation letter when you send your letter is also a good idea. The creditor can contact you one more time to confirm receipt and acknowledgment of the cease-and-desist and to provide validation of the alleged debt.

What to Do After Sending Your Cease-and-Desist Letter

Once you send your letter, you should discuss your options with an attorney. It is one thing to stop the creditor from contacting you, but it is another to resolve the debt that is the subject of the collection activity. The cease-and-desist letter will stop communications but not make the debt disappear.

Some of your options include:

  • Directing all creditor communications to your attorney
  • Getting an automatic stay through bankruptcy
  • Restructuring your debt
  • Directing the collection agency to deal with a debt relief or credit counseling company
  • Working out a debt reduction settlement with the creditor

Below is a sample cease-and-desist letter to a creditor. You can draft this letter yourself or hire an attorney to do it for you.

Sample Cease Communication Letter

Date _______________

Creditor Name





Re: Account Number: ___________________ Creditor: _________________

To Whom It May Concern:

Pursuant to the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, please stop communicating with me regarding the above-referenced account.

I am unable to make payments at this time for the following reasons:

[List reasons]

Your employees have taken the following actions that are prohibited by law:

[List actions]

I will make payment arrangements on this account when I can do so.

____________________ [Name]





Sending the Letter

Make sure to send the letter through certified mail with a return receipt. Since the debt collector must sign for it, you will have the evidence necessary to prove they got your letter. Also, remember to keep a copy of the letter for your records.

If an attorney is handling the matter, copy them on the letter. In most cases, your attorney will be the one sending the letter. They will tell the recipient to deal only with their office and not to contact you for any reason.

What Happens After You Send the Letter?

After you send the letter with certified mail, you should receive the return receipt within a few days. The creditor can't contact you further after that.

This should close the matter if the statute of limitations has passed on the debt. If that's not the case, the creditor can sue you for the alleged balance owed.

What If the Creditor Doesn't Comply With the Letter?

After you send the letter, all communication, such as phone calls to your cellphone, your house, or your place of employment, must stop. If the collection calls don't stop, or if your creditors keep harassing you, you can bring legal action for violation of the FDCPA.

You can also file a complaint with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau or your state's attorney general's office.

Getting Harassed by a Creditor? An Attorney Can Help

If debt collectors harass you about an alleged bill you owe, there are ways to stop them. A creditor must stop contacting you once they have your cease-communication letter.

If a creditor ignores your letter, they violate federal and state laws. For legal advice, speak to a bankruptcy attorney or consumer protection lawyer.

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