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Past Due Invoice Emails That Work

Examples of past-due emails for all accounts - from those in good standing to those that are delinquent.

In a perfect world, all invoices would be paid promptly and on time, but of course that’s not true. The reality is that business owners are often left to chase after accounts and the money that they’re owed.

How do you best go about that? How do you clearly communicate with customers without potentially alienating them? Here, we’ll provide some past due invoice templates that will do just that. They’re short, to the point and get your message across, quickly.

Past Due Invoice Examples

The Reminder

Description - The initial touch point. You’re providing a courteous reminder to someone with a busy schedule.

When to send - One week before payment due

Subject: Reminder of balance due for account #12345

Hi Mr Smith,

I hope this finds you well. This is a quick reminder that your payment on account #12345 will be due next week. The balance due is $3,000.

I know you’re busy, but if you could take a quick look over the attached invoice when you get a chance, I’d appreciate it.

Please let me know if you have any questions.


Thank you!

Steve Johnson


The Nudge

Description - The initial call to action. For the first time, you’re actively seeking payment. It should be brief and to the point.

When to send - On the due date

Subject: Balance due today for account #12345

Hi Mr. Smith,

This is just a reminder that payment on account #12345 is due today. The balance due is $3,000 and the invoice is attached.

You may easily pay through [INSERT PAYMENT METHOD]. 

If you have any questions, feel free to reach out to me. We appreciate your business.



Steve Johnson

On Notice

Description - This is the initial past-due invoice email. It’s letting the customer know that their account is technically in default and payment is expected immediately. You should also clearly state any associated late fees.

When to send - One month after the due date

Subject: Balance past-due for account #12345

Hi Mr. Smith,

Our records show that account #12345 is overdue. The balance due is $3,000 and an invoice is attached.

I appreciate you giving this your immediate attention. If the payment has already been sent, please disregard this notice. 


If there are issues I’m not aware of, please reach out to me.



Steve Johnson.


The Direct Ask

Description - The tone should become more terse. There is an issue on the customer’s end that is now impacting your business and you expect it to be rectified immediately. Late fees have been charged and a threat of being sent to collections should be raised to get their attention.

When to send - Two months after the due date

Subject: IMMEDIATE ATTENTION: Account #12345 in default

Hi John Doe,

This requires your immediate attention.

This is a second reminder that account #12345 is overdue, with a balance of $3,000. This payment was due two months ago. A late fee in the amount of [INSERT LATE FEE] has been assessed, bringing your total amount due to [CHARGE].

An updated invoice is attached.

We expect you to remit payment immediately. Failure to do so will lead to your account being handed over to a collections agency.

Please respond to this message to acknowledge receipt. If you have any questions, please reach out.



Steve Johnson


The Final Option

Description - This should be threatening. You have no choice but to turn to a collections agency to settle with this customer. The full amount of late fees are assessed and the account will be closed. You’re severing all relations with this customer.

When to send - Three months after due date

Subject: FINAL NOTICE: Account #12345 in default

Hi Mr. Smith,

This is a final notice that your account #12345. Including late fees of $[INSERT LATE FEES], your total amount due is $[FULL CHARGE]. 

A final invoice is attached.

If this account is not settled within seven days, your account will be closed and sent to a collections agency. 

If you have any questions, please contact me.



Steve Johnson

Now of course with Invoiced's accounts receivable automation platform, you could tailor and automate these and other communications - to streamline collections and get paid faster. Why not try it today?

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