A Cease and Desist is a letter sent to an individual or business that is engaging in unwelcome or illegal behavior. The Cease and Desist acts as a formal request that the recipient stop ("cease") and not continue ("desist") this behavior. If the recipient of the letter fails to comply with these demands, the sender should be prepared to take further legal action to stop the behavior that is harming or interfering with the sender's rights and abilities to conduct business.
This Cease and Desist letter should be used by individuals with debt from credit cards, student or home loans, or mortgages who are receiving an unreasonable number of phone calls, letters, or other communications from creditors and debt collectors.
This website also has Cease and Desist documents for the following situations:
How to use this document
A Cease and Desist letter includes the following basic elements:
This Cease and Desist letter is specifically tailored to be sent to aggressive and offensive debt collectors and creditors. The letter includes a demand that the debt collector stop repeatedly contacting and harassing the sender of the letter, thereby violating the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, in an attempt to collect an alleged debt. The letter allows the sender to specify the amount of the alleged debt, who the alleged debt is owed to, and whether the sender plans to dispute the amount or existence of the debt.
Once the letter has been completed, it should be sent via certified mail to the individual or business that has been conducting the offensive behavior.
There are no laws outlining what must be included in a Cease and Desist letter. However, best practices dictate that a Cease and Desist include a detailed description of the offending behavior and a clear demand that the behavior stop or else legal action will be taken. Further, Cease and Desist letters are often used in later court cases to show that the Defendant was put on notice about their offending behavior, so the more detailed the letter, the better.
Since this letter is a demand to stop harassing and incessant debt collection behavior, it implicates the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. This Act is a consumer protection law that establishes protection from abusive debt collection practices such as sending excessive amounts of mail or making phone calls outside of standard business hours.
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