How to dispute a warning letter in an employee file

Written by neal litherland
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How to dispute a warning letter in an employee file
(Siri Stafford/Digital Vision/Getty Images)

A warning letter is a document sent to an employee, with copies placed in the employee file. The letter is supposed to outline exactly what rules were broken, or how and why your work performance is considered sub par. Some letters offer a blank space to answer the accusation but, if not, submit a counter letter disputing the criticism of your work performance.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy


  1. 1

    Read through the employee warning letter carefully. The letter should address specific instances of your behaviour that your employer finds problematic. Make sure that you know exactly what you're being accused of before you dispute it.

  2. 2

    Compose your dispute letter. You should mention specifics about the incident and, if possible, show that your actions were in keeping with company policy. Mention the company rules you think you were following or why your behaviour was exempt from the rules due to the situation in which the behaviour occurred. Elaborate using details, and make sure that you respond only to the accusations mentioned in the warning letter.

  3. 3

    Submit your letter of dispute, giving it to your immediate supervisor or to the individual handling the incident. Your letter may lead to additional interviews and questions, so be prepared.

Tips and warnings

  • Be polite and professional in your response letter. Even if you are personally hurt by the accusation or feel you've been wronged, respond in a subdued and reasonable manner.

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