A Delinquent Invoice Email, is a reminder sent to a customer who has not paid their invoice by the due date. Here's how to write one!

How to Write a Delinquent Invoice and Minimize Sending Them

With outstanding payments reaching astronomical figures in the trillions, the importance of effectively managing a delinquent invoice cannot be overstated. The business world is no stranger to the challenge of collecting overdue payments, an issue that significantly impacts cash flow and overall financial health.

This guide will go through the process of crafting an impactful past-due invoice, a critical tool in your financial arsenal. We’ll also explore strategies to minimize the necessity of sending these reminders, further enhancing efficiency and promoting a smooth payment process.

What is a Past Due Invoice Email?

A Past Due Invoice Email, also known as a Delinquent Invoice Email, is a professional reminder sent to a client or customer who has not paid their invoice by the due date. This tool plays a crucial role in the accounts receivable process, helping businesses manage their cash flows and maintain financial health.

This invoice email is typically sent after the invoice due date has passed without payment, and its primary goal is to prompt the client to settle the outstanding amount as quickly as possible. Carefully crafted and timed delinquent invoice emails can significantly reduce the occurrence of very late or unpaid invoices, striking a balance between maintaining a positive relationship with the client and ensuring your financial operations run smoothly.

How to Write a Delinquent Invoice Email Template?

Creating a delinquent invoice email template requires careful thought and a balance between firmness and understanding. It’s about prompting your clients to take immediate action while maintaining a professional relationship. Here is a step-by-step guide on crafting an effective delinquent invoice email.

Step 1: Use a Clear and Concise Subject Line

Your subject line should immediately inform the recipient of the email’s purpose. Something like “Invoice #12345 is overdue” is direct and informative, leaving no room for ambiguity.

Step 2: Maintain Professional Tone 

Despite the circumstances, it’s essential to keep the tone of your email professional and courteous. Remember that it’s not always the client’s intention to delay payments.

Step 3: Provide Specific Details 

Include all the necessary invoice details, such as the invoice number, the amount due, and the due date. This way, the client can easily cross-reference and verify their records.

Step 4: Include a Call to Action 

Specify exactly what you want the client to do (e.g., “Please make the payment by [specific date]”). 

Step 5: Attach the Original Invoice 

Please attach a copy of the original invoice to make it easier for the client. This also serves as proof of the transaction.

Step 6: Offer Assistance 

End the email by offering help if the client has any queries or issues regarding the payment. It’s essential to show your willingness to facilitate a smooth payment process.

The goal is to get paid without burning bridges. By following this guide, you can effectively create and use a delinquent invoice email template to manage your business’s cash flow while maintaining good client relationships.

Delinquent Invoice Email Sequences with Examples

In managing delinquent invoices, sending a series of reminder emails at regular intervals is common practice. This systematic approach typically involves sending follow-up emails at the 30-day, 60-day, and 90-day marks post the invoice due date.

Each email in the sequence escalates in urgency to reflect the increasing overdue period while maintaining a professional tone. These intervals are seen as industry standards, providing a structured approach to managing overdue payments.

The ultimate goal is to secure payment, but these reminder emails also maintain open lines of communication between you and your client, fostering goodwill and promoting a healthy business relationship. With that said, let’s go over each delinquent invoice email sequence and provide adequate examples of each one:

30 Days Past Due Invoice Email

When the invoice is 30 days past due, it’s likely that your client may have simply forgotten or overlooked the payment. At this stage, the tone of your email should be formal, direct, and clear.

  • Formal: Maintain a professional and courteous tone throughout the email. Remember, the goal is to remind clients of their obligations, not reprimand them.
  • Direct: Be straightforward about the purpose of the email. Clearly state that the payment is overdue and needs to be made.
  • Clear: Include all the necessary details about the overdue invoice. Ensure your client understands the urgency of the situation, but refrain from using aggressive or confrontational language. 

Here’s an example of a 30-day past-due invoice email:

Subject: Invoice #12345 – 30 Days Overdue

Dear [Client’s Name],

I hope this email finds you well. I am writing to inform you that invoice #12345, issued on [Invoice Issued Date], is now 30 days past due. The total outstanding amount is [Invoice Amount].

Despite several reminders, we have not received the payment for this invoice. We understand that oversights happen, and we appreciate your prompt attention to this matter.

Please make arrangements to settle this invoice by [Specific Date]. If you have any questions or need further assistance, please feel free to get in touch with us.

Thank you for your understanding and prompt response.

Best regards,

[Your Name]

[Your Contact Information]

This email is gentle yet firm, providing the client with all the necessary details to make the overdue payment.

60 Days Past Due Invoice Email

At the 60-day mark, the tone of the email should be bolder and more urgent while remaining flexible. This is the ideal time to remind the client of non-payment consequences and offer any possible solutions.

  • Bold: Do not shy away from stating the gravity of the situation. Be clear that the payment is significantly overdue, and action is required.
  • Urgent: Emphasize the urgency of settling the payment. The consequence of further delay should be stated, such as late fees or interest charges.
  • Flexible: Despite the urgency, offer payment plans or suggest a discussion to resolve this issue.

Here’s an example of a 60-day past-due invoice email:

Subject: URGENT: Invoice #12345 – 60 Days Overdue

Dear [Client’s Name],

I am writing to inform you that despite multiple reminders, we have not yet received the payment for invoice #12345, which is now 60 days overdue. The total outstanding amount is [Invoice Amount].

At this point, we must emphasize the seriousness of this delay. If the payment is not made by [Specific Date], we may have to impose a late fee as per our terms and conditions.

However, we understand that unforeseen circumstances may occur and hinder prompt payment. If you are facing difficulties with the payment, please contact us to discuss possible solutions, such as a payment plan.

We value our business relationship with you and aim for a fair resolution for both parties. 

Thanks for addressing this matter promptly.

Best regards,

[Your Name]

[Your Contact Information]

This email is more assertive, urging the client to settle the overdue payment or communicate with you to discuss alternatives. It maintains a balance between urgency and flexibility, working towards a solution while emphasizing the importance of prompt payment.

90 Days Past Due Invoice Email

The situation is quite critical if the 90-day mark has not received payment. The tone of your email should now be formal, clear-cut, and concise.

  • Formal: Continue to maintain a professional tone. Refrain from using any aggressive language, even at this stage.
  • Clear-cut: Be forthright about the situation and the potential repercussions, such as referral to a debt collection agency or legal action.
  • Concise: Keep the email short, simple, and straight to the point. The emphasis should be on resolving the situation promptly.

Here’s an example of a 90-day past-due invoice email:

Subject: FINAL NOTICE: Invoice #12345 – 90 Days Overdue

Dear [Client’s Name],

With regret, we must inform you that despite our previous emails, we have not received payment for Invoice #12345. The invoice is 90 days overdue, and the total outstanding amount is [Invoice Amount].

At this stage, it’s critical to address this matter promptly to avoid further actions, including referral to a collections agency or legal action, as outlined in our terms and conditions.

If there is any issue preventing payment, please contact us immediately so we can discuss potential solutions. We value our business relationship and are confident we can resolve this matter.

I sincerely appreciate your immediate attention to this matter.

Best regards,

[Your Name]

[Your Contact Information]

This email sends a clear message about the seriousness of the situation, urging immediate action. It still offers the client a chance to resolve the matter amicably, maintaining a formal yet respectful tone.

Other Delinquent Invoice Email Samples

Not all Past Due Invoice Emails need to follow an escalation sequence. Sometimes, a simple reminder email may suffice, while a firm, formal email may be needed in other situations. Here are a few more templates to consider:

The Reminder

The Reminder is a gentle email you send shortly after the due date. It serves as a friendly nudge to remind the client about the unpaid invoice. Here’s an example:

Subject: Friendly Reminder: Invoice #12345

Dear [Client’s Name],

I hope this email finds you well. I am writing to remind you about Invoice #12345, which was issued on [Invoice Issued Date] and appears still outstanding. Please let us know if there’s any issue with the invoice.

Best regards,

[Your Name]

[Your Contact Information]

The Nudge

The Nudge is slightly more direct. Sent a few weeks after The Reminder, it emphasizes the overdue invoice while still maintaining a professional tone.

Subject: Reminder: Invoice #12345 Overdue

Dear [Client’s Name],

I wanted to bring to your attention that Invoice #12345 remains unpaid. We appreciate your prompt attention to this matter.

Best regards,

[Your Name]

[Your Contact Information]

On Notice

The On Notice email is sent when the payment is significantly late. It clearly states the overdue nature of the payment and the need for immediate action.

Subject: Immediate Attention Required: Invoice #12345 Overdue

Dear [Client’s Name],

We have not received payment for Invoice #12345 despite our previous reminders. Please address this overdue payment immediately to avoid any disruptions.

Best regards,

[Your Name]

[Your Contact Information]

The Direct Ask

The Direct Ask is sent when previous emails have not resulted in payment. It is straight to the point and requests immediate payment, offering assistance if needed.

Subject: URGENT: Immediate Payment Needed for Invoice #12345

Dear [Client’s Name],

Despite our previous notices, Invoice #12345 remains unpaid. We require immediate payment of this invoice. If you require assistance, please contact us promptly.

Best regards,

[Your Name]

[Your Contact Information]

The Final Notice

The Final Notice is the last email before taking further action. It must communicate the consequences of not paying the invoice.

Subject: FINAL NOTICE: Immediate Payment Required for Invoice #12345

Dear [Client’s Name],

Despite multiple reminders, payment for Invoice #12345 has not been received. Please understand that if payment is not made by [Specific Date], we will need to initiate further action to recover the debt.

Best regards,

[Your Name]

[Your Contact Information]

By sending these delinquent invoice emails, you maintain a professional tone while making it clear that payment needs to be made. At the same time, you offer flexibility and support in finding a resolution. Remember, effective communication is key to minimizing the need for past-due invoices. 

How to Reduce Late Payments and Mitigate Delinquent Invoices?

Speaking of reducing the frequency of late payments and mitigating the need for delinquent invoice emails, there are several strategies businesses can employ. A conscientious and proactive approach can go a long way.

Clear Communication

Begin by ensuring your clients are fully aware of the payment terms before you start the work. Provide all necessary details, including payment due dates, payment methods, and late payment penalties.

Prompt Invoicing

Send invoices promptly after providing a product or service. Timely invoicing keeps your cash flow healthy and gives clients ample time to process payments.

Payment Reminders

Set up a system for sending payment reminders a few days before the due date. A gentle nudge can often prompt clients to pay on time.

Easy Payment Methods

Offer multiple and easy-to-use payment methods. The easier it is for clients to pay, the faster you will likely receive your money.

Incentives for Early Payment

Consider offering incentives such as early payment discounts. This is a great way to encourage clients to settle their invoices ahead of the due date.

Regular Follow-Ups

Don’t wait for the payment to become overdue. Regularly follow up with clients to check on the status of the payment. This shows you are on top of your finances and value prompt payment.

By implementing these strategies, you can significantly reduce the number of late payments and the need for sending delinquent invoice emails. As a result, you’ll spend less time chasing payments and more time focusing on your core business activities.

How ReliaBills Helps with Reduce Delinquent Invoices

In today’s technologically driven world, manual invoicing processes leave businesses vulnerable to late payments and delinquent invoices. That’s why you should ditch traditional invoicing in favor of a more convenient and efficient billing software solution like ReliaBills.

ReliaBills is a cloud-based invoicing and billing software designed to automate payment processes, reduce administrative overhead, and streamline payment processing duties. ReliaBills’ payment processing features include automated recurring billing, payment tracking, payment reminders, online payment processing, and much more!

It also provides valuable tools that help manage customer information, monitor payment records, and create proper billing and collection reports. As a result, invoice and billing management are simple and convenient. You also get access to active customer support, ready to assist you whenever you need help.

Get started with ReliaBills for free today! And if you want more features, you can upgrade your account to ReliaBills PLUS for only $24.95 monthly! Subscribing to ReliaBills PLUS will give you access to advanced features such as automatic payment recovery, SMS notifications, custom invoice creation, advanced reporting, and more!

With ReliaBills, you have an all-in-one solution to your invoicing and payment processing needs. Our convenient solutions will enable you to focus more on running and growing your business without worrying about late payments or delinquent invoices. Get started today!

Wrapping Up

Handling late or unpaid invoices is an inevitable part of doing business. However, with a thoughtful approach, you can significantly reduce the number of delinquent invoices you must send. 

Adopting an all-in-one solution like ReliaBills can further streamline your invoicing and payment process, allowing you more time to focus on your core business. By taking these proactive steps, you can minimize the financial strain of late payments and keep your business running smoothly.

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