How to draft a legal notice: 17 Essential Pointers for Beginners to Remember
What is a legal notice?
A legal notice is a formal declaration made by one party as a part of a legal warning against another party. But how to draft a legal notice? The notice consists of two parties, basically, I.e., a sender and an addressee. The sender is the one sending a legal notice. An addressee is the one with whom the legal message is being shared. Sending it clarifies the existing grievances between those two parties. In addition, it aims to let the other party know to correct their behavior and resolve their disputes within a given timeframe.
In this situation, if the legal notice isn’t taken seriously by another party, the case is directly dragged to the court floor. Legal Notices are primarily important in case of the arrival of disputes between two or more parties. The sufferer party that got highly influenced due to the step taken by another party holds the right to take legal action against that party by sending a legal notice as a warning. Taking legal action is referred to as the suit filing in the name of the law.
Why is it important?
Drafting a legal notice is quintessential in a vast manner—formal legal information helps underline a sort of warning to the addressee. Sending a legal notice and how the other party acknowledges it decides the outcome. It tells whether the case can be sorted and put at a halt here or if this lawsuit needs to be taken to court and let the judge take action upon it. Ensure that the case falls under the category of civil cases to be eligible to send a legal notice.
“How to draft a legal notice?” is where people get mostly stuck. Therefore, we have prepared the entire article to make writing a legal notice much easier.
Modes of sending the legal notice
Once the legal notice is ready, you can share it with the other party via the following medium. All of these modes of sending legal notices are considered to be professional.
Legal notice content
An essential legal notice consists of the following content as mentioned below:
- Full name, current residential address, and further explication regarding the person sending across the legal notice
- Full name and the existing current address of the person to whom the sender intends to send the legal information, I.e., to the addressee
- Summary of the case
- Relief Sought with a clear and detailed overview.
- Outlining Adequate Time Frame in which the reply is expected from the addressee
- Officially used and Valid Signature of the Professional Lawyer
- Officially used and Valid Signature of the legal notice Sender
How to draft a legal notice?
Once you have the clarity on How to draft a legal notice, you can go ahead with the process. Drafting a legal statement requires adhering to the predefined set of steps.
Follow the following steps to prepare the legal notice for an addressee.
1. Connect to a Professional Lawyer
Please know that the final sharing of the legal notice is done by a professional lawyer only. It is because he holds the rights to share the information legally. Due to this, it becomes quintessential to connect with a fully educated, experienced lawyer for drafting and sending a legal notice.
2. In-depth Case Discussion
As a part of your second step, you need to keep away from the shyness and hiding strategy. Be open to the lawyer and share all the details about the case. Explain each incident in advance and explain it to him. It will make it easier to draft a legal notice on your behalf. While mentioning all the information to the lawyer, you also need to address the complete name, current address, complaints involved, misleading activities, other inhibiting issues, and the relief sought by both the parties involved in the matter.
3. Documentation Step
All the mandatory documents your lawyer asks for must be provided to the sender, so keep them ready with you in advance. Keep an open mind and trust the lawyer to handle the entire process.
Steps to draft a legal notice
4. Notice Drafting Process
The entire legal notice is written in legal language using only the legal terminologies. The Legal notice is written in English or Hindi. The drafting process includes mentioning all the required information about sending the warning and the platform of sorting it before taking it to court. It would help if you set the time in which you expect the address to respond. After receiving the legal notice, the addressee has fifteen days or a month to revert to the information.
5. Information Signatures on Notice
The final legal notice requires the signature of both the lawyer and the sender. Once it’s there, you can share it with the addressee. The lawyer must sign the notice before sending it to the second party. Keep track of the acknowledgment receipt if you send it via a courier. Also, please keep a copy of it for further usage and reference.
Key points to remember while writing a legal notice
Writing a notice might seem like an easy task but can be cumbersome if you fail to keep track of the following things. Firstly, your lawyer or the person writing the legal notice must have sufficient knowledge about the subject – ‘How to draft a legal notice.’
1. Avoid making every word, or most of it abbreviated.
2. The entire legal notice is not written in capital words.
3. Never use confusion-creating words. It includes this (at the beginning), we, me, us, etc.
4. The correct place to put the date in your legal notice is either extreme left or right of the top or bottom sides.
5. The capital letters mention the caption, emphasizing words, crucial information, and organization name.
6. Frame your sentences into simple English language. It will make your content look more apparent to the reader.
7. Proofreading is required at least twice before you share the legal notice. First, it ensures that your information is free of all grammatical errors.
8. The entire content of the legal notice is written within a ‘Box.’
9. Few notices allow using the short sentences having symbols or abbreviations for some words, not all.
10. Strictly avoid using jargon or unnecessary words. Example, ‘In contrast to this,’ ‘The said item,’ or ‘Here to say that.’ It populates the notice making it look more sophisticated and clouded.
11. The person issuing the legal notice often writes their signature, then full name and designation at the end.
12. Keep track of the word count. Exceeding the word limit puts you under an obligation to pay the penalty. In general, the body of the notice has only 50 words.
13. The length of the sentences ideally is short and crisp. While writing short sentences, make sure to keep the purpose of your legal notice apparent.
14. Use positive sentences and avoid writing them in a negative tone.
15. Get your legal notice checked by the notice expert writer. It will help you have a crisp dissertation and save you from rejection due to unclearness when reviewed by the arbitrator.
Format of legal notice
A legal notice has a specific format in place. Follow the provided design for active drafting.
1. General Information
Start with detailing your basic information for the sake of clarity to the addressee. At the beginning of the legal notice, a sender needs to include his original details consisting of his full name, current living address, and other detailed explanation about his profile.
2. Testimony stating the reason behind taking this action
Every single piece of information you provide in the legal notice is in the form of a paragraph. The significant statements addressing different sections make it easier for the addressee to read and understand. Every paragraph consists of the disputes, vital facts, and relevant arguments favoring the initiation of taking steps of sending the legal notice. The sender is free to add all the proof, even the verbal communication they had earlier with the other party, to support his statement.
3. Relief Sought Part
The sender needs to add in-depth knowledge and description about the relief sought. It is generally added in the last ending paragraph of the legal notice. Make sure to add all the relevant information here.
When to send a legal notice?
The legal notices are generally sent in two cases. i.e., criminal cases and civil cases. In a criminal case, all the legal formalities are handled by the state authorities. In case of a civil case, you can send across the legal notices.
A brief mention of these civil cases has been mentioned below:
1. Property Disputes Scenarios
Disputes between two parties related to property matters are prevalent in India’s courts. The survey revealed that civil property or land disputes cases are almost 66% in an Indian court. Out of these 66% cases, nearly 30% are related to the acquisition, and 25% are land disputes. The legal notice is sent to the other party in the following cases –
- When the constructor of the building inhibits the custody of the property;
- Family members wanting to separate willingly;
- Tenant Banishment
2. Personal Clashes Scenarios
If you have encountered any personal disputes with your partner, parents, or anybody else, then you hold the right to drag the case to court. You can do so by sending a legal notice to the other party. It can eventually lead to filing a legal claim against him if the matter fails to get sorted or acknowledged by the other party within the given timeframe. Such scenarios of personal clashes with your partner mainly include the following –
- Child Custody Case;
- Prenuptial Agreement Infringement;
- Personal Maintenance;
- Divorce with your partner;
- Conjugal Rights Rebate
3. Customer Complaints Scenarios
Legal notice can be sent, and a case can be filed in a situation when the products or services don’t meet the initially committed standard. In such scenarios, a consumer holds a right to file a case or send the legal notice to the actual provider of the utilities.
- They are defective, wrongly advertised, and leading to fooling the public.
- The final product or services a customer receives is different from what was projected initially through advertisements.
4. Filing Complaints against the Employee
Strict action can be taken against his employer if they break the rules; the general cases of violation of company rules for employees are –
- If they violate and go against the Employment Agreement;
- If they seem to get indulged in the sexual harassment activities;
- If they fail to adhere to the preset HR policies;
5. Filing Complaints against the Employer
An employee can send his employer a legal notice if wrongful things are done against him during payroll. The employee is eligible to draft a legal statement against the employer and send it across in the following cases –
- If they are not paid their monthly salary;
- If they face a sort of discrimination or disparity or partiality based on caste, creed, or color;
- If they are terminated without reason or the manager fails to clearly state the ‘Explanation of Termination.’
- If the employer misuse his power or authority against the employee;
- If they face sexual harassment of any sort from their employer, then filing a case is the employee’s right.
6. Bounce of Check
In a rare case when a check bounces back, the person holds the right to draft a legal notice and send it to the check issuer. Negotiable Instruments Act has Section 138, which says that you can file a legal case against the issuer of the cheque if it bounces back.
How much does it cost to draft a legal notice?
The entire cost of drafting a legal notice depends upon the complexity of the dispute between two parties and the lawyer you have hired for this purpose. Once you have the clarity on the issue that needs to be addressed to the addressee, you can calculate the lump sum charge by a free consultation. In minor cases, the cost of drafting a legal notice by an advocate can go as low as INR 500/- and in significantly complicated cases, it can go up to digits in lakhs.
‘Take an example where you need to send a legal notice regarding the disputes of non-adherence to duty rules, a shoppers case, or a check bounce – it will cost you between INR 1500/- to INR 5000/-. For more complex cases like property disputes and other claims, the fees might go up to lakhs.’ Deciding on the price also depends on the studies, experience, and degree achieved by the advocate.
Based on his years of expertise in this field, you will be charged. The best way to decide upon it is to go for a free consultation provided by an advocate. If you feel that you can write it on your own and you have an idea of it, you shall go for it and get it proofread by some known advocate, a person holding knowledge in this field. It will save a lot of your money and other going back and forth processes.
Benefits of drafting a legal notice
Writing a legal notice can save you from a lot of legal complications. There are several benefits linked to drafting a legal notification and sending it to the addressee.
1. Attaining Mutually Agreed Outcome
The step of sending a legal notice is intended to come to a common judgment regarding the civil disputes. Here, both parties can put forth their underlying problems, clashes, and different viewpoints. By weighing both sides, you can reach a joint decision or a sound output for both parties. Therefore, taking this particular step can be beneficial for the parties to save mutual respect, bond, understanding, time, and money.
2. Money-Saving Step
If you think that the entire litigation procedure will be under INR 2000/- in India, then you are fooling yourself. Dragging such a civil case to the court can highly put you under the finances debts. Henceforth, taking a mid-step to save money involves rolling out a legal notice. It gives the pathway to another party to review the entire case and sort it out with the sender to avoid a lengthy and not-so-pocket-friendly litigation process.
3. Time-Saving Process
Every Indian has a fair idea about the Indian courts and how many pending cases exist today. Pulling your case to the court can take from weeks to years to conclude. Sending a legal notice not only saves your time but also allows the other party to give a rethought to their actions and sort the matter.
Legal notices are highly effective in resolving disagreements between two or more parties. Seek help from a professional lawyer or any other expert who is well versed in legal terminologies. If you think you can write on your own, you should first understand how to draft a legal notice and then get the final proofreading done by an expert.
It will help you to reject all the unnecessary statements from your drafted legal notice. Make sure to send across the legal information as your initial warning to resolve the clashes. Also, mention a specific timeline in it. If still, you didn’t get any positive response from the other party, then the case needs to be dragged to court for the final judgment. It may be highly time-consuming and not so pocket-friendly.
So, the first step to resolve the case is via sending an effectively written legal notice. Get a thorough study of the format and other mandatories shared above in this article to ensure you are on the right pathway.