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Cease and Desist Letter

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Cease and Desist Letter

Learn more about Cease and Desist Letter

A Cease and Desist Order is granted by a court or government agency to an individual, business, or organization to stop an activity that is harassing or infringing upon the named party (or parties). A court may issue such an order if a party is able to demonstrate that another party is infringing on their trademark, harassing them (such as debt collection calls), or engaging in a breach of contract, to name just a few examples.

While a Cease and Desist Order carries the weight of the court and can clear the way for the filing party to bring legal action for noncompliance, a Cease and Desist Letter is the first step in this process. This document serves as a warning that legal action will follow if the party fails to comply.

Making a Cease and Desist Letter using Rocket Lawyer is simple. You just need the following information:

  • Names and addresses of both parties, and phone numbers if available
  • Description of activity that prompted the letter
  • Days they will have to respond to the letter before legal action is taken
  • Documents, images, or other proof of harassment or infringement

With this information, you will be able to automatically generate your Cease and Desist Letter. Once the letter is created you can edit, print, download, or share it online. Make sure you keep a copy for your records.

Yes, anyone can send a Cease and Desist Letter. You do not need to hire an attorney to write one for you. An attorney, however, can help you determine whether your rights have been violated and if you have enough grounds to pursue legal action.

There are four common reasons that Cease and Desist Letters are used:

  • Collection agency harassment
  • Trademark or patent infringement
  • Harassment (e.g. slander, libel, and defamation)
  • Copyright infringement (of original web content, music, video or audio, etc.)

Essentially, these letters are sent as a courtesy that you will pursue legal action unless they cease a given action (or inaction, as may be the case in a breach of contract dispute) that you believe violates your rights. However, you shouldn't send one unless you're certain you have legal leverage. If you're unsure about whether a Cease and Desist Letter is right for your situation, ask a lawyer.

A Cease and Desist Order can be either temporary or permanent. A temporary Cease and Desist Order will be granted until a trial can be conducted (or a settlement is reached). Depending on the legal proceedings in a given case, a permanent Cease and Desist Order will not be granted until after the conclusion of a trial or settlement.

Yes, a Cease and Desist Letter can be sent via email. Other delivery methods can include:

  • Fax
  • Standard mail
  • Certified mail with a signature required
  • Delivering the letter in person and requiring a signature
  • Via a legal process server

Whichever method you choose to send a Cease and Desist Letter, you'll want to make sure it's traceable. For instance, requiring a signature will provide proof that the other party has indeed received notice.