Writing A Veterinary Bill Hardship Letter

Veterinary bills are expensive. Nevertheless, if your beloved pet falls ill but you don’t have sufficient funds for it, you cannot allow it to suffer, much less die. Instead, you usually take your pet to the vet and explain the situation. There are numerous programs available to assist people in financial hardship who have high vet bills. Most of the time, the vet will want you to write a formal hardship letter that highlights the situation, so that a solution can be found.

Basic Rules in Writing the Letter

The letter should be written formally and in the correct format. It should clearly address the vet, or the name of the veterinary office. Include your account number, or the number of the bill you sent out. Make sure someone proofreads it for you, or read it again a day after writing it yourself, as it should also be free of grammar and spelling mistakes.

Specifics of the Hardship Letter

Start your letter by expressing your gratitude for the care they provided to your pet. Include their name and a brief description of what was wrong. Make sure to include dates as well. Do also show your gratitude for the fact that the veterinary office considered treating your pet despite the fact that you found yourself unable to pay. This shows respect for the fact that the vet trusted you, and you should not break this trust.

Next, explain that you are in a situation of financial hardship, and that you need some degree of flexibility in paying for the treatment of your pet. It is likely that your vet will have offered some sort of credit line but if you are in a situation of financial hardship, your application will likely have been declined. Also describe your other attempts to gain access to funds, such as crowdsourcing, and how successful (or not) these have been.

Make it clear that you do not expect the bill to go away, or even for the amount to be reduced. Rather, you should be looking at a way of paying the balance off over a certain period of time. Make an offer of a specific amount that you are able to pay each month. Do not promise more than you are actually able to pay. If you did crowdsource for your pet’s treatment, and you received some funds towards that, then make sure that you include that in your offer. Furthermore, if you have any particular skills that could be of benefit to the vet’s office, offer those in lieu of payment as well.

Veterinarians have a passion for animals, not for money. Hence, so long as you make it abundantly clear that they were able to save your pet’s life, and that you have every intention to pay back the money you owe, it is likely that they will accept your offer. This is also because legal recovery actions are incredibly expensive, and the vet would prefer to come to some sort of voluntary agreement with you, rather than going through the legal system.

Veterinary Bill Hardship Letter Example

{Phone #}


Dear {veterinary office}:

Thank you from the bottom of my heart for your skilled and compassionate care of {pet’s name} during {his/her} recent {injury/illness}.

I can also never thank you enough for focusing more on the emergency medical situation than on billing matters. Your respect and trust is much appreciated.

With that being said, I will need some flexibility in paying off the costs of {pet name}’s treatment. My application for the credit line you recommended was declined, and my efforts at crowdsourcing funding gathered only {amount}.

I’m not seeking to have you reduce the bill in any way. Rather, I’m hoping you can see your way clear to accept payments of {amount} per month. Additionally, please let me know if there is any work I can do in or around your veterinary office to help offset what I owe you. My skills include {landscaping/marketing/painting/etc.}.

Thank you again for everything. {Pet’s name} is {home with me/at peace over the Rainbow Bridge}.


{Sender Name}

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