Writing a Complaint Letter to an Attorney (Free Templates)

Whether you’re dissatisfied with your attorney’s performance or have concerns about their conduct, a well-crafted complaint letter is essential. In this guide, I’ll share my experience, offer three unique templates, and provide tips to ensure your letter gets the attention it deserves.

Key Takeaways

  • Purpose: Clearly state the reason for your complaint.
  • Details: Include specific examples and evidence.
  • Tone: Maintain a professional and respectful tone.
  • Follow-up: Request a response or a meeting to discuss your concerns.
  • Documentation: Keep copies of all correspondence.

Understanding the Importance of a Complaint Letter





A complaint letter serves multiple purposes. It documents your dissatisfaction, provides an opportunity for the attorney to address your concerns, and can serve as evidence if further action is needed. It’s crucial to articulate your grievances clearly and professionally.

Why Write a Complaint Letter?

  • Record Keeping: Documenting your issues can be useful for future reference.
  • Resolution: It opens a channel for resolving the problem.
  • Professional Accountability: Ensures attorneys are held to professional standards.

Tips from Personal Experience

Having written several complaint letters, I’ve learned some key strategies:

  1. Be Specific: Detail the incidents that led to your dissatisfaction. Include dates, times, and specific actions or inactions.
  2. Stay Professional: Keep your tone respectful, even if you’re frustrated.
  3. Provide Evidence: Attach relevant documents, emails, or other evidence to support your claims.
  4. Request Action: Clearly state what you want to happen next—whether it’s a refund, an apology, or a meeting.
  5. Follow Up: If you don’t receive a response within a reasonable time, follow up with a phone call or a second letter.

Real-Life Example

A few years ago, I had an attorney who consistently missed deadlines, resulting in significant delays in my case. After several unreturned calls, I decided to write a complaint letter. By detailing each missed deadline and including copies of relevant correspondence, I was able to highlight the issue clearly. My respectful yet firm tone prompted a prompt response and a satisfactory resolution.

Template 1: General Complaint

[Your Name]
[Your Address]
[City, State, Zip Code]
[Email Address]
[Date]



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[Attorney’s Name]
[Law Firm’s Name]
[Law Firm’s Address]
[City, State, Zip Code]

Dear [Attorney’s Name],

I am writing to express my concerns regarding the legal services I have received from you. Specifically, I am dissatisfied with [describe the issue]. This has caused [explain the impact on your case or personal situation].

I have attached [list any documents] that support my complaint. I request a meeting to discuss this matter further and find a resolution. Please contact me at [your phone number] or [your email address] to schedule a convenient time.

Sincerely,
[Your Name]

Template 2: Complaint about Communication

[Your Name]
[Your Address]
[City, State, Zip Code]
[Email Address]
[Date]

[Attorney’s Name]
[Law Firm’s Name]
[Law Firm’s Address]
[City, State, Zip Code]

Dear [Attorney’s Name],

I am writing to address my concerns about the lack of communication from your office. Despite my repeated attempts to contact you regarding [specific issue], I have not received any response. This lack of communication has [explain the impact].

I urge you to address this issue promptly and keep me informed about the progress of my case. Please contact me at [your phone number] or [your email address] at your earliest convenience.

Sincerely,
[Your Name]

Template 3: Complaint about Fees

[Your Name]
[Your Address]
[City, State, Zip Code]
[Email Address]
[Date]

[Attorney’s Name]
[Law Firm’s Name]
[Law Firm’s Address]
[City, State, Zip Code]

Dear [Attorney’s Name],

I am writing to dispute the fees charged for your services in my case, as outlined in the invoice dated [date]. I believe there are discrepancies in [describe the discrepancies], which do not align with our agreement.

Please review the attached documentation and provide clarification or a revised invoice. I hope we can resolve this matter amicably.

Sincerely,
[Your Name]

Table: Comparison of Complaint Types

Type of ComplaintKey FocusSupporting DocumentsDesired Outcome
General ComplaintSpecific issue or behaviorIncident reports, emailsMeeting, resolution
Communication IssuesLack of communicationLogs of calls/emailsImproved communication
Fee DiscrepanciesBilling issuesInvoices, fee agreementsClarification, revised invoice

Final Thoughts

In my experience, the key to a successful complaint letter is to remain factual and respectful. While it can be frustrating dealing with inadequate legal representation, maintaining a professional tone will help you achieve a more favorable outcome. Use the templates provided as a starting point, and tailor them to fit your specific situation. By doing so, you can ensure your concerns are taken seriously and addressed appropriately.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q: What should I include in a complaint letter to an attorney?

Answer: When I wrote a complaint letter to my attorney, I made sure to detail specific incidents, dates, and any supporting evidence to clearly convey my concerns. This helped me provide a structured and factual basis for my complaint, which led to a more effective resolution.

Q: How do I format a complaint letter to an attorney?

Answer: From my experience, I structured my complaint letter with a clear introduction, a detailed body outlining my grievances, and a concise conclusion requesting specific action or response. This format ensured that my letter was professional and easy to follow, which facilitated a prompt reply.

Q: What tone should I use in a complaint letter to an attorney?

Answer: In my complaint letter, I maintained a calm and professional tone, avoiding emotional language or accusations. This approach helped me present my case effectively and ensured that my concerns were taken seriously by the attorney.

Q: How long should a complaint letter to an attorney be?

Answer: Based on my experience, I kept my complaint letter concise, around one to two pages, focusing on key points and avoiding unnecessary details. This ensured that my letter was direct and to the point, making it easier for the attorney to address my concerns promptly.

Q: Is it necessary to send a complaint letter to the attorney’s firm or directly to the attorney?

Answer: When I had an issue with my attorney, I sent the complaint letter directly to both the attorney and their firm to ensure it was addressed appropriately. This dual approach increased the likelihood of a timely and comprehensive response.

Q: Should I mention any previous attempts to resolve the issue in my complaint letter?

Answer: In my complaint letter, I outlined all previous attempts to resolve the issue, including dates and outcomes. This demonstrated my efforts to resolve the matter amicably and provided context for my escalation to a formal complaint.

Q: Can I request specific actions or remedies in a complaint letter to an attorney?

Answer: Yes, in my letter, I clearly stated the actions or remedies I expected, such as a refund or an apology. This helped set clear expectations and facilitated a more focused resolution process.

Q: How can I ensure my complaint letter is taken seriously by an attorney?

Answer: To ensure my complaint was taken seriously, I backed up my claims with evidence and maintained a respectful tone throughout the letter. This approach highlighted my professionalism and seriousness about the issue at hand.

Q: Should I send my complaint letter to any regulatory bodies?

Answer: After sending my complaint letter to the attorney and not receiving a satisfactory response, I forwarded it to the relevant regulatory body. This step ensured that my concerns were formally documented and reviewed by an oversight authority.

Q: How soon should I expect a response to my complaint letter to an attorney?

Answer: From my experience, I typically received a response within two to three weeks after sending my complaint letter. If I didn’t hear back within this timeframe, I followed up to ensure my complaint was being addressed.