How should one end - ie, sign-off - a letter that begins with "To whom it may concern"?
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If you are referring to the "Complimentary Close" (the word above your signature), it depends on the tone and formality of the letter. If you do not have a specific person to address the letter to, I would use either of these:
According to Miss Manners, the answer is "Yours faithfully". That is what I use.
"Sincerely" is a fairly common formal sign off.
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It partly depends on the contents of the letter. If I'm submitting, say, a letter of reference, that might warrant something a little different than a general inquiry, a request for a favor, or a formal complaint.
As was stated previously, Sincerely is perfectly acceptable, and almost always a safe option. But if you wanted to soften a complaint, then Respectfully might be a better choice.
By default, in the To-Whom-It-May-Concern situation, I don't know who will be reading the letter (otherwise, I would have begun with something less generic). With that in mind, I'll sometimes want to end with my contact information, in case the matter needs further discussion to resolve:
School taught me to sign letters addressed personally 'yours sincerely' and letters addressed impersonally 'yours faithfully'. Thus, if your salutation is 'To whom it may concern' the corresponding valediction would be 'yours faithfully'.
protected by RegDwigнt♦ Oct 20 '13 at 12:54
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