Decline Orders or Requests For Information • Example Letters, Guides and Samples
A brief letter explaining why you are declining an order or request for information helps retain the goodwill of your reader.
How to write this refusal letter:
- Thank the reader for the order or request, or offer a compliment.
- Explain, if possible, why you are unable to fill the order or give the requested information. State the refusal briefly but clearly.
- Close on a positive note.
Example Letter #1
Recently we received your request for an item-by-item register of cases 35 to 43 of the John Doe Photographic Collection housed here in the Springfield University Library Archives.
We always try to assist our patrons in their various research projects, although the small size of our staff often prevents us from following up on specific kinds of inquiries. Because the Doe Collection, a very recent acquisition, is enormous in size and has not yet been cataloged, the best we can do for you at this time is invite you to survey the collection in person. Library attendants will be on hand to assist you during your visit, and a light table is available in our Special Collections Reading Room for your perusal of photographic slides and transparencies.
To help you plan your visit to our library, I'm enclosing a flyer with our Reading Room hours and policies, along with a summary of various library services. We wish you the best of luck in your research and look forward to your visit.
Example Letter #2
We appreciate your interest in Doe's English Language schools, but we do not supply large quantities of our brochure to free-lance recruiters. I am enclosing one brochure giving pertinent information about our program. It is intended for your personal use and is not to be used in a business that would recruit students. We routinely receive more student applications than we are able to accommodate, so we do not actively recruit. Of course we will be pleased to consider your personal application.
Example Letter #3
Thank you for your recent order of the Business and Industry Directory for the State of Kansas. This directory has always been a big seller. Unfortunately, the 2018 directory is no longer in stock and the 2019 directory will not be published until November.
You may want to order the same directory on CD. Although it costs $20.00 more, those who have used it give glowing reports. The entire 2018 directory is on the disk. You may access information by town, zip code, or business name. It is actually a much more efficient source of information.
I have enclosed an order form and a brochure explaining the CD in more detail. You may order by phone or by returning the order form at the bottom of the brochure. In either case, we will ship the day we receive the order.
Thank you for your understanding. I hope the CD alternative meets your needs.
Example Letter #4
Thank you for your inquiry about our tax preparation services. I am sorry that we will be unable to help you with your individual tax return. For the past few years Doe has focused exclusively on corporate returns, and we cannot take on any new individual clients. I would be happy to send you the names of several other tax attorneys in the area who can give you competent service. Please call my secretary at 555-5555 if you would like such a list. Thank you for thinking of us at Doe & Doe.
Write Your Letter Step-by-Step
1 Thank the reader for the order or request, or offer a compliment.
Sample Sentences for Step 1
- Thank you for your letter requesting information on our new software program.
- We appreciate your interest in learning more about the laws pertaining to the custody of minor children in a divorce.
- We are pleased that you have chosen to open a furniture store in our area.
- Thank you for your order of two mini-trampolines.
- We appreciate your interest in Doe's American College Testing (ACT) Preparation Course.
- Thank you for ordering our new no-tip canoe.
Sample Phrases for Step 1
- am sorry to report that we cannot send
- appreciate your interest in
- appreciate your kind comments
- appreciate receiving your order for
- are glad you enjoyed our editorial on
- greatly appreciated your enlightening comments
- especially appreciate your complimentary remarks
- greatly appreciate the order you placed with
- have received your November 3 letter requesting
- pleased to know of your interest in
- pleased that you have chosen to open
- so pleased to hear from you after you read
- than you for requesting information regarding our
- thank you for your letter
- thank you for your interest in learning more about
- thank you for ordering our new
- thank you for writing us about
- thank you for inquiring about our possible interest in
- thank you for your order
- thank you very much for inquiring about
- will find that we have reason to be proud of our
- your request for information about
2 Explain, if possible, why you are unable to fill the order or give the requested information. State the refusal briefly but clearly.
Sample Sentences for Step 2
- Because our software is not yet copyrighted, we cannot yet release detailed information about the program to the public.
- Since we are a retail outlet, we cannot fill your order for 200 white muslin sheets.
- Since we are offering our mini-trampoline only as an incentive to purchase a Healthometer, it is not available as a separate item. I am therefore enclosing a refund check in the amount of $35.
- Because I am not legally representing you in this matter, I feel it would be inappropriate for me to give an opinion in what sounds like a complicated case.
- We have carefully developed this course over a number of years, and those who enroll with us are paying for our expertise. Thus, as I am sure you will understand, we cannot offer you free information on how to prepare for the ACT.
- Because our canoes have proven so popular and are individually handcrafted, we now have a five-year backlog on canoe orders. We are therefore not accepting new orders at this time.
Sample Phrases for Step 2
- am sorry we no longer have these drawings
- are not available as a separate item
- as much as I appreciate your promptness in filling our
- as incentives to anyone buying
- as I am sure you will understand
- because each is individually handcrafted
- because I am not legally representing you in this matter
- because our software is not yet copyrighted
- booklet you requested is unavailable at the moment
- cannot supply you with the information you requested
- cannot fill your order for
- cannot offer you free information on
- carefully developed over a number of years
- cannot yet release detailed information to the public
- do not have the number of copies you requested available
- does not publish financial information outside the company
- enclosing a refund check in the amount of
- have run out and will not print any more this year
- in what sounds like a complicated case
- inappropriate for me to proffer an opinion
- information is not in a readily accessible form
- information is rather sensitive to our client
- not accepting new orders at this time
- now have a two-year backlog
- since we are a retail outlet
- since we are offering our
- sorry to say that we do not have completed brochures
- unable to accept an addition of this kind
- wish I could send you the material you asked for
- would like to grant your request for
- would be reluctant to offer them as teaching material
3 Close on a positive note.
Sample Sentences for Step 3
- When we release our software, we will be happy to provide you with more complete information on its specific applications. Thank you for your interest in Doe Software Technologies.
- We wish you every success in your new business venture.
- Thank you for thinking of Doe's Health Products.
- Best wishes to you. I hope your efforts to resolve this matter meet with great success.
- Best wishes to you in your efforts to prepare for the test.
- We appreciate your interest in our canoe and look forward to hearing from you at a future time.
Sample Phrases for Step 3
- after reviewing the enclosed information you will agree
- also appreciate receiving more information on
- appreciate your thinking of
- appreciate your interest in
- appreciate your views on how to improve
- best wishes to you
- best wishes as you develop your own
- happy to provide you with more complete information
- hope your efforts to resolve this matter meet with success
- let me know if we can assist you in other ways
- let me know if we can do anything else to help
- look forward to hearing from you at a future time
- please feel free to call me
- please write again
- sincerely thank you for your interest in
- thank you for your interest in
- thank you for thinking of
- thank you for writing
- wish you well in your project
- wish you success in finding
- wish you every success in your new business