Formal letter styles

When you are writing a business letter you have to choose from one of about two formal letter styles.


These two styles are discussed below:

Block style

The block style is also known as the Full block style. In this style, all elements of the letter are justified to the left.

This business letter style is becoming very common, for the obvious reason that typing in this manner is easier, especially on a computer.

Below is an example of the Full block style:

Full Block Style

full block letter style

Modified Form block style

In the modified formal letter styles, the following letter elements are aligned from the middle of the paper, making them seem as though they are aligned right:

  • Return address
  • Date
  • The Complimentary close
  • The sender’s Name and signature


The following elements are aligned left:

  • The Recipients Name and title
  • The Recipient’s address
  • Salutation
  • Body

This style is demonstrated in the sample below. Note carefully the following:

  • The paragraphs may be indented
  • When the paragraphs are indented, no line spacing should be left.
  • When paragraphs are indented with no line spacing between then, then this style is known as the Semi-block style.

This style is preferable to business letters that are more informal in nature.

Modified block style:

modified block letter style

Semi-Block Style:

semi-block letter style

Return from Formal Letter Styles to Letter Writing

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