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Cease And Desist Letter Form PDF Free Download
Cease And Desist Letter
A Cease and Desist Letter aims to resolve a dispute before going to court.
This written notice requests that an individual or business stop some action that infringes on your rights.
It may ask that the other party halt the illegal activity or end some form of harassment.
Creating a Cease and Desist Letter puts you in control and may help you prevent any further illegal action.
You can use this document to alert the party in question, letting them know they are infringing on your rights and that there may be legal consequences if they fail to stop.
What Does “Cease and Desist” Mean?
The word “cease” means to stop doing something and “desist” is to abstain from doing it further.
Therefore, the term “cease and desist” is a formal declaration to immediately halt whatever that party is doing now and in the future.
A Cease and Desist Letter lets another party know that they are engaging in an action or behaviour that infringes on your legal rights and requests that this action or behaviour stop.
It also warns the other party that if this illegal action or behaviour continues — and consequently violates your liberties somehow — you will take legal action against them.
A Cease and Desist Letter, also known as a demand letter, is not a legal document but rather an attempt to avoid legal action by getting ahead of the problem.
It warns of potential legal action if the matter is ignored. Because litigation can be time-consuming and incredibly expensive for everyone involved, including you, most individuals and businesses adhere to the request of a Cease and Desist Letter and stop the questionable action or behaviour, frequently unaware that a legal violation was taking place.
In many cases, a Cease and Desist Letter may be all it takes to prevent any further infringement of your rights.
The threat of legal action is often sufficient to avoid any other controversy.
However, a lawsuit may be necessary if a Cease and Desist Letter fails to accomplish its intended goal.
Legal action may be taken against a breach of contract, for example, or a trademark infringement when the party in question ignores your request to cease and desist in the illegal actions or behaviours infringing on your rights.
How It Works
When writing a cease and desist letter, the goal is to have the recipient feel the urgency of refraining from continuing the specified act.
It is recommended that the letter is reviewed and signed by an attorney.
Step 1 – Choose Your Template
Choose one of the templates that provide an outline for the cease and desist letter.
Most templates state that if the violating party does not refrain from the act, a lawsuit will soon follow.
Therefore, it is best to have legal representation ready in case the violator does not accept the terms of the cease and desist.
Step 2 – Include Evidence
The most important part of the letter is a detailed outline of the claims against the recipient.
Harassment – Disparaging text messages, audio recordings, or any video that shows the individual’s inappropriate behaviour
Intellectual Property – Evidence of where the property is being used without authorization, such as a business location or website
Trademark – List where it is being used without consent, and the trademark registration number to show proof of ownership
Step 3 – List the Consequences
Most recipients of cease and desist do not know that it is actually a pre-suit letter.
This means that this is their last chance at negotiating before the author of the letter files a lawsuit seeking monetary damages.
This statement should be written in bold and underlined immediately after listing the recipient’s violations.
Step 4 – Send the Letter via Certified Mail
It is important to send the letter to the official mailing address of the recipient.
For business entities, this would be the Registered Agent’s Office which can be found in the respective State’s division of corporations (often referred to as the Secretary of State’s office).
It is preferred to use the United States Postal Service (USPS) to send the letter with a return receipt (see Sample USPS Certified Letter).
The cost is $3.45 (just for the return receipt service) and will give proof that the letter was delivered by returning a copy of the recipient’s signature upon acceptance.
The receipt of the recipient’s acceptance may be used later to prove to the court that the recipient received the cease and desist.
Sending Online – For $7.99 you can send the letter online with OnlineCertifiedMail.com.
Simply upload your cease and desist letter and enter where it is being sent.
Afterwards, you will be able to track the package all the way to the recipient.
Do Not Use FedEx or UPS – According to a 2008 ruling, Leatherbury v. Greenspun, 939 A.2d 1284, the court had ruled that there is no substitute for Certified Mail with return receipts sent via USPS (such as FedEx and UPS) not accepted.
Step 5 – Wait for the Recipient’s Response
If the cease and desist calls for a response from the recipient, it is best to wait until the time period is complete (usually five to 10 business days).
During this time, it is best to prepare with legal counsel for proper actions to take if no response is received.
Step 6 – Reach a Settlement
If the violating party responds to the letter, it is best to reach a settlement out of court.
Due to the variance in judgments, one can never predict the outcome of a costly lawsuit.
Therefore, if the violator is able to simply stop whatever it is they were doing, that is usually enough to stop further legal proceedings.
Step 7 – File for a Cease and Desist Order / Injunction
If the other party is unresponsive and continues to act against the cease and desist, a cease and desist order or injunction can be issued from the court.
Due to the essence of time and because the defendant has already been served notice, an “emergency motion” should be filed.
This will speed up the process, and depending on the court, the judge will be required to make an immediate decision based solely on the evidence presented to them.
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Cease And Desist Letter Form PDF Free Download