How to Write a Proper Resignation Letter (with template)

Are you resigning from a position and need to write a resignation letter?

I’ve resigned from several jobs and each time wrote nearly the same resignation letter. It’s easy, it should not be stressful, and our simple template below will help you get it done quickly.

Quitting a job may be hard but writing the letter won’t be.

Table of Contents
  1. What to Put in a Resignation Letter
  2. What NOT to Put in a Resignation Letter
  3. About Your Resignation
  4. Free Resignation Letter Template

What to Put in a Resignation Letter

A resignation letter should be the most simple and barebones letter possible. Consider it a formal legal document where you only put what is necessary to let your employer know you’re leaving the company.

This includes:

  • Your contact information
  • A formal statement indicating you’re resigning
  • End date of employment
  • Your signature
  • If you want, thank them for your time there, the opportunities you were given, and how much you enjoyed it… but even that I’d consider leaving out.

That’s it.

I know it looks austere but it’s a legal document. Only what you need and none of what you don’t.

Speaking of what does NOT go in…

What NOT to Put in a Resignation Letter

Everything else.

Don’t air grievances. Don’t give a reason. Don’t talk about where you’re going. Don’t tell them you’re getting paid more. Keep the tone of it neutral to positive.

If you have a good relationship with your supervisor or boss, you can talk to them about it in person. There’s no reason to include it in a letter. If you’re at a big enough company, that letter will just be forwarded to a person in human resources that you probably don’t know.

About Your Resignation

If you have an employment contract, make sure your resignation meets the requirements of the contract. Some contracts will include how much notice you need to give (how much time ahead of your resignation). Some contracts have penalties if you break the contract before the terms allow.

If you don’t have a contract, you’re an at-will employee and you can resign whenever you want. You are not required to give two weeks notice, though that is the customary amount of time.

When you resign, if you are doing so in person, bring a printed copy of the letter with you to give to your boss. If you are sending it by email, the email serves as documentation.

Free Resignation Letter Template

Here is a Resignation Letter Template you can edit for your resignation (click here to open in Google Docs, them click File and Download to make a copy for yourself):

[Your Name]
[Your Address]
[Your Phone Number]
[Your Email]

[Date]

[Your Boss’ Name]
[Your Employer]
[Your Employer’s Address]

Dear Mr/Ms [Your Boss’ Name],

I am formally resigning from my position as [Your Position] for [Your Employer] effective [Resignation Date].

Thank you very much for the opportunities you have given me to learn about [something something something] and I have enjoyed my time with the company.

Please let me know what I can do to help with the transition.

Sincerely,
[Signature]

[Your Name]

It’s super simple, sticking to the facts, and even the second paragraph is optional.

As for formatting, 12 point Times New Roman, single spaced, and keep it to a single page. It’s about as basic as it gets.

Short, simple, and to the point.

Oh, and don’t be shocked if you get escorted out immediately.

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About Jim Wang

Jim Wang is a forty-something father of four who is a frequent contributor to Forbes and Vanguard's Blog. He has also been fortunate to have appeared in the New York Times, Baltimore Sun, Entrepreneur, and Marketplace Money.

Jim has a B.S. in Computer Science and Economics from Carnegie Mellon University, an M.S. in Information Technology - Software Engineering from Carnegie Mellon University, as well as a Masters in Business Administration from Johns Hopkins University. His approach to personal finance is that of an engineer, breaking down complex subjects into bite-sized easily understood concepts that you can use in your daily life.

One of his favorite tools (here's my treasure chest of tools,, everything I use) is Personal Capital, which enables him to manage his finances in just 15-minutes each month. They also offer financial planning, such as a Retirement Planning Tool that can tell you if you're on track to retire when you want. It's free.

He is also diversifying his investment portfolio by adding a little bit of real estate. But not rental homes, because he doesn't want a second job, it's diversified small investments in a few commercial properties and farms in Illinois, Louisiana, and California through AcreTrader.

Recently, he's invested in a few pieces of art on Masterworks too.

>> Read more articles by Jim

Opinions expressed here are the author's alone, not those of any bank or financial institution. This content has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

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