Sample Letter of Complaint

*The names and dates in this letter are fictitious and for marketing purposes only.

*John and Jane Smith
12345 Nameless Avenue
Nowhere, For Example

January 1, 2002

Mr. Joe Executive
ABC123 Computers
12345 Silicon Blvd.
Computerville, IT Land

Subject: Faulty Products and Demand for Remedy

As a result of numerous failed attempts to resolve our situation with your company, it is the purpose of this letter to, first, clearly state the basis of our grievances with you and, second, to apprise you of the legal and non-legal options now at our disposal to force a subsequent remedy from ABC123 co.

Specifically, on June 1, 2001, our family purchased a computer and printer from your website, This decision we made, in part, because of the assurances made on the site pertaining to the terms of the warranty for both products and the claims made regarding available customer service. A copy of these sections of your website have been enclosed for your reference. [No actual attachments accompany this sample letter]

Of current relevance are the specific provisions concerning the length of the warranty and the problems that are covered under it. The problems experienced with the equipment after the purchase are plainly covered by the warranty and your customer service failed to live up to anywhere near what was originally suggested. As the following clearly explains, the events since have been a source of anguish and frustration for our family, as well as what ought to be a source of shame and even litigation for your company.

The problems experienced after the purchase are summarized here:

After having turned the computer on for the first time, it was soon discovered that a number of the software packages that were to be included as part of the agreement at purchase were in fact missing. A list of these is also attached for your reference. All attempts at resolution of this problem were rebuffed by your company. This was soon to establish a pattern in our dealings with you.

Approximately one week later the computer started making clicking sounds that have yet to stop for any reasonable duration of time. Local computer technicians have stated that the problem is of a structural nature in the hard drive and can only be repaired at considerable cost. A detailed description of this phenomenon is attached for your reference, as is a report given b a local computer shop. Again, all attempts at resolution were rebuffed by your company. The only thing more annoying than a clicking computer is a customer service department that refuses to offer customer service.

To further add to this bizarre tale, approximately one month ago the operating system of the computer suddenly became inoperable, crashing every time someone tried to use the printer. We have had extensive contact with the company that produces the operating system and, as the attached report indicates, the fault lies with a specific component of the printer itself and not with the operating system that is affected as a result. Further research we have done ourselves regarding the nature of the problem only confirms such an assessment.

What has been of great concern and alarm to us, beyond the problems experienced with the actual equipment, is the nature of the response we have received from your people every time an effort was made to solve the problem we were experiencing at the time. The three major difficulties are described above. Yet for each one several phone calls were made and emails sent, all to no avail. Responses ranged from, "there is nothing we can do" or, "it is not our problem" to outright accusations that we were somehow the cause of the problems. One customer service manager had the audacity to tell us that, "There must be something wrong with your family." And attempts to reach more senior management personnel were completely refused.

O.K. Enough is enough! We have had it with dealing with your company and have been informed by lawyers that the status of our mutual situation is thus:

The equipment we purchased from your company is a write-off. It is of no value to anyone who expects full use of their computer, and full use is impossible without the kind of repair that would make an entirely new computer an option far easier to implement.

We want our money back! Not only do we want the money that we paid for the contraptions in the first place but we also want the money back for the expenses and punitive damages incurred as a result of trying to remedy the numerous problems and headaches experienced after buying what were supposed to be pieces of equipment in good order. A list of all expenses has also been included with this letter.

Our legal advice leads us to believe that winning in court is almost assured, as is the prospect that all our legal expenses will be paid in full by you - if this ever does actually go to court.

In order to try to convince you of the more reasoned course of action, which is to simply avoid the costs of legal maneuvering and provide us with what we are justly entitled to, we are prepared to also send out a batch of letters to key publications, including leading consumer and computer magazines, detailing a story here that would probably make for good reading to their wide audience, many of whom may be previous or potential customers of yours.

This entire ordeal has been a very unfortunate and aggravating period for all of our family. We implore you to settle this matter equitably at this time before the aggravation spreads even further, the difference being that any further such difficulty would be experienced more by you than by us, since it cannot get much worse for us. We expect to hear from you soon, or maybe not.


John and Jane Smith

Enc. [There is nothing actually enclosed with this sample letter]