How to write a resignation letter due to unfair treatment

By Indeed Editorial Team

Published 9 July 2022

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

Quitting a job can be stressful, and the way you resign can affect your reputation in the industry. That's why it's important to follow the correct procedure when handing in your notice. It's particularly important when you're resigning for a sensitive reason, such as unfair treatment, and may experience many emotions and find it challenging to remain professional. In this article, we explain the best way to hand in your resignation letter due to unfair treatment and describe actions an employee may consider unfair treatment, including tips, steps, a template and examples to follow.

What is a resignation letter due to unfair treatment?

A resignation letter due to unfair treatment is a formal document that notifies the company of your intent to leave your position. This correspondence between yourself and your manager outlines your reasons for doing so. You may wish to write a resignation letter after an incident at work where you feel you've suffered unfair treatment. This usually informs your manager, supervisor or employer of the specifics of the offence and includes additional details, such as your final working day.

Read more: How to write a resignation letter

What can employees consider unfair treatment at work?

Unfair treatment in the workplace covers a variety of complaints, which include:

  • bullying

  • harassment

  • poor management

  • racism or racial discrimination

  • gender discrimination

  • religious discrimination

  • age discrimination

  • pregnancy discrimination

  • disability discrimination

  • nepotism

  • retaliation following complaints

  • salary disputes

  • working hour disputes

Read more: Resignation letter due to a career change: tips and examples

How to write a resignation letter due to unfair treatment

Discover how to write a resignation letter in a polite and professional manner by following the steps below:

1. Speak to the human resources department

One of the roles of the human resources department is to deal with complaints in the workplace. That's why it's wise to speak to them first before making further decisions or handing in your notice. They may be able to rectify the situation, or they may put practices in place to deal with your complaint. If you raise your concerns and still feel the company has not resolved the issue, you can write a resignation letter as a last resort.

Read more: How to write a short notice letter of resignation (with tips and examples)

2. Have a meeting with your manager

If your workplace doesn't have a dedicated human resources department, or you've already spoken to them and aren't happy with the outcome, arrange a meeting with your manager or supervisor. Their job is to take these matters seriously and ensure you're happy at work. They may also be able to use their senior rank to highlight the issue to upper management. You can speak to your manager in person or send an email requesting a one-on-one meeting to discuss any issues that you may have.

Read more: How to write an immediate resignation letter (with template)

3. Decide to write your resignation letter

If you have followed both steps above and still feel it's best to leave the company, it's time to write your resignation letter. Think clearly about the reasons for your resignation and what you hope to achieve in your letter. Decide whether you wish to move on or be clear about your complaint within the letter to establish boundaries or pursue a legal claim.

Related: How to write a nursing resignation letter (with examples)

4. Use a neutral and civil tone

When you feel a colleague or an employer has mistreated you, it can be tempting to react with strong language. An unprofessional or emotional resignation letter could affect your reputation and hiring potential. Therefore, it's best to describe your reason for leaving in a neutral, civil and non-accusatory tone, using polite language and phrasing throughout.

Read more: 6 types of resignation letter templates

5. Include your last working day

Establish the date of your last working day. If necessary, review your contract to remind yourself of your notice period. Remember that your notice period only begins the day you hand in or present your resignation letter. If you wish to leave immediately, make it clear in your letter that your resignation is effective immediately.

Read more: How to tell your boss you're quitting: a helpful guide

6. Mention the positives

Even if you plan to divulge the negative aspects of your reason for leaving in your letter, try to balance it out by mentioning what you've enjoyed during your employment. This could be the relationships you've had with colleagues, the opportunity to learn and develop your skills or the overall company culture. Include this as a summary of the highlights of your experience at the company.

Read more: What to include in a resignation letter for personal reasons

7. Discuss the next steps

Besides mentioning your last day, it's also helpful to clarify your next steps in your resignation letter. Mention what role you'd like to undertake over your notice period, such as training new staff members, or if you'd prefer to leave immediately. Mention whether you're taking the matter further with legal proceedings.

Related: 'Is quitting my job OK?' 11 reasons it may be time to quit

Letter of resignation template

If you wish to write a letter of resignation due to unfair treatment at work, here's a sample template you can follow:

[Your full name]

[Your home address]

[Your email address]

[Your phone number]

[Date]

[Name of supervisor, their job title]

[Name of employer or company]

[The company's head office address]

[The company's email address or that of a supervisor or human resources department]

[The company phone number]

[Employer name]

[Body of the letter]

[Your full name]

[Signature]

Read more: 6 types of resignation letter templates

Letter of resignation due to unfair treatment examples

Here's an example of a resignation letter you may write if someone treated you unfairly at work:

Example 1

Betty White

202 Harfield Court

Hammersmith

London, W2 7ET

Betty.white@email.com

07899344211

21 June 2022

Phoebe Wilson, marketing manager

Best Imagine

10 Whitefield Street,

London, SW2 7OT

phoebe.wilson@bestimagine.com

07899455678

Dear Phoebe,

I am writing to inform you of my resignation as a marketing executive at Best Imagine. As per the terms of my contract, I am providing you with one month's notice of my intention to leave the company, and 11 July 2022 is my last working day.

While I have thoroughly enjoyed the last three years I have spent at Best Imagine and have learnt a great deal from you and the marketing team, it is with regret that I cannot continue my employment here. I have recently been the victim of unfair treatment from one of my colleagues. Although I have provided three official complaints to the human resources department, for which I have had no response, the company has made no effort to prevent this from reoccurring. I feel as though not only has my colleague acted inappropriately, but that the senior staff have also not provided me with adequate support.

I have exhibited my wide range of skills and expertise whilst working at Best Imagine and have contributed much to its success in recent years. I have also learned a lot in the process. Nevertheless, I believe that it is now time for me to depart. During my notice period, I can provide any necessary training to my replacement and ensure that I hand over any unfinished work.

Thank you for offering me the opportunity to work with you and the team. I wish you and the company every success in future ventures.

Yours sincerely,

Betty White

Example 2

Betty White

202 Harfield Court

Hammersmith

London, W2 7ET

Betty.white@email.com

07899344211

21 June 2022

Phoebe Wilson, marketing manager

Best Imagine

10 Whitefield Street,

London, SW2 7OT

phoebe.wilson@bestimagine.com

07899455678

Dear Phoebe,

Please accept this letter as formal notice of my resignation from the marketing executive position at Best Imagine, effective immediately. Unfortunately, I feel I received unfair treatment within the workplace on numerous occasions. Despite having raised these concerns with the human resources department multiple times, this case remains unresolved.

For this reason, I no longer feel safe working at Best Imagine and have therefore decided to leave the company. I sincerely apologise for any inconvenience this may cause you and the team while you find a suitable replacement. I am more than happy to provide support throughout the transition.

I wish you and the company every success in new ventures, and I hope we can stay in touch professionally for the foreseeable future.

Yours sincerely,

Betty White

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