How to Send a Letter?

Last revision: Last revision:October 26, 2023

To effectively communicate official matters with another person or entity, it is crucial to utilize formal letter communication. This guide will provide insight into how to send a letter with a clear purpose and proof of sending.

Proof of receipt is a crucial element when sending a letter, especially when it involves some legal implications.

As such, the proof of receipt serves as evidence that the recipient has received the communication, which will be helpful in legal and other official proceedings.

The proof of receipt is necessary when sending legal notices, including notices of termination, breach of contract, notice before filing a consumer complaint, etc. should be sent with proof of receipt to ensure their acknowledgement. Having the proof of receipt can also be important when you are communicating deadlines or important dates, proof of receipt ensures that the recipient is informed and aware.

(1) Merits and demerits of sending the letter with proof of receipt


Proof of receipt enhances the credibility of the communication, showing that you took reasonable steps to ensure the intended recipient received the message.

A letter with proof of receipt holds more weight in legal disputes, it demonstrates the intention and legitimacy of your communication.

Proof of receipt methods allows for tracking the delivery status, including the date of delivery, the person who received the letter, the reason for non-delivery, etc. Since the registered letters are tracked and recorded by a third-party service provider, they can be a reliable witness in case of any legal disputes.


Depending upon your delivery method, you may incur additional costs to have proof of receipt. For example, you need to pay additional costs for sending a registered letter with acknowledgement using India Post services.

Depending upon the delivery method you use, there may be a delay in delivering the letter. Delivering a letter with proof of receipt may involve added formalities and documentation.

(2) Consequences of sending the letter with/without proof of receipt

With proof of receipt

If you are sending the letter with proof of receipt, it will strengthen your legal position in a court or other dispute resolution forums. It will establish that the recipient has received and acknowledged your communication. Thus, when any dispute arises, with proof of receipt in hand, you can avoid any misunderstanding or disputes concerning the receipt of the letter by the intended recipient.

Without proof of receipt

If you are sending the letter without proof of receipt, in case of a legal dispute, you may not be able to prove that you have duly sent the letter to the recipient and may stand as a blockage in resolving the dispute.

(3) General methods of sending letters with proof of receipt

Hand-delivered and contra signed

This is a method of sending important legal documents or letters by physically delivering them to the intended recipient and obtaining their signature as proof of receipt. In this process, the recipient signs a document, often referred to as a "contra-signed" document, to acknowledge the receipt of the letter. This method ensures a direct and immediate exchange of communication, adding a layer of authenticity and accountability to the process.

All in all, this method can be used for:

  • Urgent legal notices: when time is of the essence, such as serving legal notices for contract termination or legal actions, hand delivery ensures that the recipient receives the communication quickly.
  • High-stake negotiations: in cases where the negation involves sensitive legal matters or important financial matters, using the hand-delivery method helps establish a clear record of communication.
  • Confidential communication: when the content of the communication is highly confidential or sensitive, hand-delivery minimizes the risk of the document being intercepted or misdirected.

Benefits of using hand-delivery

Hand delivery allows for real-time confirmation of receipt through the recipient's signature, leaving no room for any confusion or ambiguity. It will have a personal touch by emphasizing the importance of such letters and will have legal weightage as the document has been signed and sealed (in the case of an entity) by the recipient. This method can be used on urgent matters where a bit of negotiation or communication is required.

Demerits of using hand-delivery

Hand delivery won't be possible if the recipient is far away from the sender. In most cases, delivery involves added time and cost. The intended recipient may not be available to receive the letter when you visit them.

So, it is better to evaluate the situation and choose whether the hand delivery method is suitable.

Mail with return receipt requested

Mail with return receipt requested is a service provided by postal agencies (both public and private) that allows the sender to receive confirmation of delivery for a mailed item. This confirmation typically comes in the form of a signed receipt sent back to the sender indicating that the recipient received the mail.

This method can be used for:

  • Formal notices: when sending legal notices such as demand letters, termination notices, breach of contract notices, and cheque bounce notices, using mail with a return receipt requested ensures that the recipient acknowledges receipt. This is crucial of establishing a solid paper trail or evidence in case of legal disputes.
  • Legal agreements: When sharing important legal documents like contracts, agreements, or settlement offers, this method provides evidence that the recipient received and had the opportunity to review the documents.
  • Time-sensitive matters: when you are sending a letter with deadlines, important dates, etc. using this method will support such communication and the recipient cannot ignore or neglect such communication.
  • Official communication: for official communication with government agencies, using mail with the receipt requested will ensure that the letter has reached the correct person or department and is acknowledged.

The most significant advantage of using the mail with return receipt is the indisputable proof of delivery. The documented record will be helpful for any further communication or will act as proof of evidence in court procedures.

An email with delivery confirmation

Nowadays, most email providers such as Gmail, Outlook, etc. provide delivery confirmation and read receipt options. You need to separately change the settings to receive the delivery confirmation and read receipts.


Sending a letter, especially a formal or legal letter requires careful consideration of the proof of receipt. The choice of the method depends on the nature of the matter involved, urgency of the matter, availability of service, etc. It is better to ensure transparency, credibility, and legality in formal communication to ensure your legal interest is well-protected. Thus, it is always better to include proof of receipt while sending a letter and it will significantly impact the outcome of any legal disputes or negotiations in the future.

Templates and examples to download in Word and PDF formats

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