Response to a Cease and Desist Letter

Many people fear receiving an official notice to cease and desist from certain activities. You may fear that your business activity will be negatively affected at best and closed at worst. There is no reason to fear receiving a cease and desist letter and the right cease and desist response will help your business.

What to Do if You Receive a Cease and Desist Letter

A cease and desist letter is simply a letter sent to the alleged wrong-doer about copyright or trademark infringement. It may detail legal action that can occur but sending the letter itself is not legal action. It is a warning about an infringement with steps to resolve the issue.

The first step if you receive such a letter is to not panic. You will want to show a lawyer the letter and determine what the next steps should be. A lawyer can work with you through mediation or court to help you get the best solution for you.

A lawyer can also help you write a response to a cease and desist letter. This response can look different depending on how you want to respond to the initial letter. You may have been infringing on a trademark unknowingly or you may have the right to the trademark in question. A response will detail your response and prepare you for future legal proceedings.

How to Handle a Cease and Desist Letter

Your cease and desist response will depend on your reaction to the letter. Once you have met with a lawyer, you can determine how you want to respond and what the letter will entail. Meeting with a lawyer should be the first thing you do after carefully reading the letter.

There are two main responses to a cease and desist letter: accepting or refusing the claims. By accepting the claims, you are agreeing to stop using the trademark. You may have to sign an agreement, but no further legal action will be taken against you.

If you deny the claims, you will likely want a lawyer. You will want to gather evidence to prove your case. This may involve asking the sending party to send more evidence. If you believe that you have the trademark over the dispute in question, you may send a counter cease and desist as a response. There are many reasons that you would deny a claim and a lawyer can help you build your case.

You can also choose to not respond to a cease and desist, though this can lead to further problems. Response times may vary, but you should respond as soon as possible so that the sending party knows that you received that letter.

All responses should be handled personally or between lawyers. Any statement made publicly can be used against you in the future.

How to Respond to a Cease and Desist Letter

Your response to the initial letter should be clear and present your resolution to the alleged infringement. Including all of the necessary information will help your case if the claim moves to court.

1. Read the Letter Thoroughly

You want to be sure that you understand what the claims are and what the letter is asking of you. This will help you as you decide what steps to take.

2. Meet with a Lawyer

A lawyer familiar with copyright and trademark law can help you determine what you should do next. They can help you write your response after you decide what you want to do. A lawyer may also help determine how strong the sender’s case is over your case if you want to fight the claims.

3. Choose the Response

Your response to a cease and desist letter will depend on how you accept or deny the initial letter. Accepting the claims will typically not involve as much work. Denying the claims may involve evidence of your own as you present your case.

4. Preparing the Response

A response to a cease and desist letter template will help ensure that you have all of the required information, especially when denying the claim. With a lawyer and a template, you can prepare your response either way.

5. Negotiating

Even if you accept the claims, you may have to negotiate the final agreement. When denying the claims, you will need to negotiate to find the right solution that works for everyone.

Cease and Desist Response Letter Sample

When drafting a cease and desist response, you will want to include the necessary information. This is a letter that can be used in court if legal proceedings go that far. A response to a cease and desist template will help you include all of the required information no matter how you respond.

Accepting the Demands

When you accept the demands, you are agreeing that the other side is correct. You can send a letter saying that and sign an agreement to stop.

Letter Example

Dear John Doe,

This response is to your cease and desist letter received on the 20 of May in 2021. I, Jane Doe, hereby accept the claims made by you after validating through the United States Patent and Trademark office.

I was not aware until your cease and desist letter was brought to my attention that we were violating the trademark 87170000 on file with the United States Patent and Trademark office. I have taken all measures to remove the registered trademark from all of our products.

Please review this to ensure that all trademarked items have been reviewed in an effort of compliance with your cease and desist letter.


Jane Doe

Denying the Demands

Denying the claims is more complicated. There are several reasons why you’re denying the demands and that will lead to different outcomes. You may find that the sending side is infringing on your trademark and send a counter cease and desist letter. You may deny any similarity or ask for more information.

A lawyer will help you determine how to build and argue your case. You will need evidence that your claim is correct. A well-written response to a cease and desist letter will help you through the legal process.

Letter Example

Dear John Does,

This response is to your cease and desist letter received on the 20 of May in 2021. I, Jane Doe, hereby deny the claims set in your cease and desist letter, including, but not limited to, the claim that we use your trademark filed under serial number 87170000 with the United States Patent and Trademark office.

My logo does not dilute your trademark. As you can see on our products and website, the logo differs from yours in color and shape. Furthermore, we have used our logo for the past ten years, which predates your first use of the logo.

For these reasons, it has been concluded that the claims made in your cease and desist letter are invalid.


Jane Doe

Published: May 28, 2021