Cease and Desist Letter to Protect Your Rights

Cease and Desist Letter

Are you getting harassed by a neighbor? Did you believe this individual will damage your representation by making false statements? Understand what a cease and desist letter is and how an experienced attorney can help you develop an effective solution.

What is a Cease and Desist Letter?

A cease and desist letter is a formal warning sent to the alleged wrongdoer. It is also known as a cease and desist notice, a stop harassment letter, a demand letter, or a cease and desist form. In the letter, you would describe the alleged misconduct and demand that the misconduct cease immediately. This type of letter warns the wrongdoer that you will take legal action if the misconduct continues. Partner with one of our experienced attorneys to work with you to craft your letter to ensure it’s effective and so the wrongdoer takes it seriously.

What it is Not

A cease and desist letter is not a legally binding document. It’s also not the same thing as a cease and desist order, which is an order given out by the court. It’s important not to get the two confused. To clarify, the order is a legally-binding document that, if broken, comes with real penalties of a fine or even jail time. To get a cease and desist order, you would have to file a lawsuit and give the court a strong reason as to why you need the order. The order is an injunction enforced by local and state authorities. On the contrary, with a cease and desist letter, you do not need to file a lawsuit. Just simply connect with an attorney to help you write the letter based on your situation.

When to Use a Cease and Desist Letter

You may use these letters in a variety of cases. They are typically a good initial step in addressing a dispute, especially if you’d like to try and avoid costly and time-consuming litigation. Proof of a cease and desist letter establishes that you notified the wrongdoer. This step in the legal process can support your claim should the misconduct continue, then you proceed with a lawsuit. From harassment to intellectual property disputes, here are the situations when an attorney can you help you write an effective letter to stop the misconduct:

Personal harassment

You can send an official cease and desist letter as the first step to try and stop the harassment if someone:

  • repeatedly calls you
  • spams your voicemail
  • cyberstalks you
  • intimidates or bullies you

Intellectual property infringement

Are you a victim of copyright, trademark, plagiarism or patent infringement? A cease and desist letter can help stop someone from using your work without consent.

Breach of contract

If the other party with whom you have a legal agreement is violating the conditions of the agreement, then you may send a cease and desist letter as the initial step to stopping the breach of contract.

Libel or slander

If you’re a victim of a false and defamatory statement about you or your business, your cease and desist letter must outline the defamatory statement, why it’s not true and what damage you’re experiencing as a result.

Debt collector harassment

If a debt collector is repeatedly calling you or visiting your property, then you can consider sending a cease and desist letter by citing the Federal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. Under this act, debt collectors must adhere to specific guidelines in collecting debts from an individual. It specifically addresses the ban of “abuse and deceptive conduct”. Before you decide to sue a debt collector for harassment, you must file a cease and desist letter first.

How to Write A Cease and Desist Letter

By working with an experienced attorney to help you compose your cease and desist letter, you ensure it is fully informed and detailed. It must be remembered your goal is for the wrongdoer to take your actions seriously. Don’t write the letter yourself or use an online template. You risk missing important details that will support your case, especially if you end up taking your dispute to court. Here are just a few of the elements one of our attorneys will work with you on to write you an effective letter:

  • Your name and address
  • The recipient’s (wrongdoer) name and address
  • A detailed description of the alleged misconduct
  • Number of days the wrongdoer has to respond (typically, 10-15 days)
  • Any documentation of proof supporting your claim

The content of the letter will depend on your case details and the type of misconduct. Our team of knowledgeable attorneys will be able to consult with you on the necessary information and language to use.

After completion of the letter, the attorney will send it with his or her official signature by certified mail and request a return receipt. Your lawyer may also choose to send it by email in addition to certified mail.

What Happens After You Send Your Letter?

The recipient of your letter has the option to stop the alleged misconduct, challenge the validity of your letter, or simply ignore it. If they choose to ignore it or challenge the letter, then your attorney will advise you about the next steps.  Together, you may move on to a formal hearing to review the demands in the letter. A judge will then make a ruling on the violation. It’s important to remember that since the letter is not a legal document, the recipient does not have to respond.

Work with an Experienced Local Lawyer to Write Your Cease and Desist Letter

If you’re a victim of harassment, intellectual property infringement, breach of contract, libel, slander or debt collector harassment, then a cease and desist letter written by an experienced attorney can help you. With the professional consultation of a lawyer, your letter has a better chance of stopping the misconduct and allowing you to move forward.

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