As an employer, you’re likely to have an employee request for a letter of employment. Writing a verification letter doesn’t have to be difficult. Read on to find out what your letter should contain and what to avoid.
As an employer who runs a business, you’re likely to assume a wide variety of responsibilities. While you might have an idea of things like complying with new tax requirements or conducting payroll, in some cases, an employee may request for something that seems odd and out of your jurisdiction.
Sometimes an employee may request you to provide them with evidence of employment to get a new tenancy or secure a bank loan. If this is your first time hearing this, you might want to read more to learn on how to write a letter of employment.
What is a Letter of Employment and What is it Used for?
A letter of employment also knows as a verification of employment letter is a short document that an employee uses to prove that he/she is employed at a specific company. The letter verifies certain information about an employee in writing.
The information provided includes:
Sometimes the letter may include the employee’s salary and how often they are paid. This information can be shared depending on the employer’s operating policies.
Mortgage companies and banks often request prospective borrowers to produce a letter of employment before they consent to offer a loan. Also, landlords could ask for a verification letter before leading a property out.
Also, government agencies might want to request wage garnishment. For this reason, they will ask for an employment verification letter from potential employers and lending agencies or banks.
This is meant to prove that the employee is in a position to make regular payments to repay outstanding debts. A verification letter is also critical if you employee foreign nationals.
You’re likely to come across employees who request a verification letter. Fortunately, you don’t need a whole day to write one. However, you need to understand the rules surrounding verification letters to avoid any possible liability.
An employment verification letter seeks a person’s job title, employment status, and salary. In some cases, the request may include assessment of job performance, salary growth, and the employment file.
Certain information disclosures such as assessment of job performance, salary growth, and employment history have higher liability risks. It’s essential to be careful in responding to these requests as they may put you and your company at risk.
What Should You Disclose About a Former Employee?
At times you may get a request for information about a former employee. You need to have a signed release of information on file. This information should be available on your employment ending checklist. Be sure to compare the signatures in the employee file against the one attached to the request for verification.
Writing a Letter of Employment
If your current employee requests a letter of employment, this may feel like more of a chore and not a responsibility. Nevertheless, understand that your employer could be more stressed as they may need the letter for a new apartment, an education loan, or a mortgage.
In some cases, a former employee may request for a verification letter. You don’t want to include information that may sabotage you. Certain information may be used as evidence in a court case.
The first step is to talk to the HR department about the process of creating the letter. The department can help you know the template to use or may look into the final letter before it’s sent out. Excellent communication skills are what makes you stand out from the crowd. Your letter should be free or errors both grammatical and structural.
Some of the basic tips that are helpful include:
Also, avoid being over-the-top with your answers. Remember to keep your tone practical, concise, and clear. Do not forget to take into account your company’s work ethics when writing the letter. Include all the essential information regarding your company and your job.
The Format of a Letter of Employment
You may want to use a business letter style as a standard template for such a letter. However, if unfamiliar with the format, here’s a breakdown of what you should include.
Letter of Verification Sample
June 15, 2018
134 Business Avenue
Garden City, New York 19001
Pioneer Capital Investments
Gaylord, Michigan 98726
Subject: Employment Verification Letter for Susan Mayer
Dear Mr. Paul,
We received your request for a letter of employment for Susan Mayer, in regards to her application for a mortgage in your office. As the recruitment generalist for XYZ investments, I will provide you with the requested information.
Susan Mayer has worked with XYZ investments for six years, since June 12, 2012. She is currently a Business Development Manager, a position she has held for 2 years, after first working as a finance operations assistant.
I have attached her basic details with this letter.
Please contact me at (516) 098-9034 or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions or require more information.
Recruitment Generalist, XYZ Investments
364 Old Street, Lakeview
San Francisco, California
To Whom It May Concern:
This is to certify that Mr. Smith Smithers is an employee at GREG Consultants and is working as a retention office since January 2016. His current gross salary is $80,000 per annum.
If you have any concerns or questions regarding Mr., Smith’s employment, please contact me at 989-023-6045.
Mr. Walter Payton
567 Bank Street, Broward
Things to Not Include in a Verification Letter
Certain disclosures should never be included in an employment letter. This helps you avoid having issues with the federal or state employment and privacy laws.
Some of the issues that account for impermissible disclosures include sexual orientation, health status, race, religion, or ethnicity. Although gender will be reflected in the letter when using pronouns, it should never go beyond that.
Any information about an employee’s personal life should also be avoided. Things like how many kids the employer has, his/her relationship with his family, or plans to have a family are not impermissible.
If you need to make any disclosures that you’re not comfortable with, speak to a lawyer or your HR departments for a review.
Going through this post will give you an idea of how to write a letter of employment. Avoid giving opinions and do not send any documents such as a termination letter or personal records to another company. Talk to your HR department to find out what are permissible disclosures. Keep it short, professional, and accurate.