How to Address a District Attorney in a Letter

Three Parts:Sample LetterAddressing a Letter to a District AttorneyWriting Your Letter

Addressing an authority figure can be intimidating. When addressing any authority figure, it is polite to show respect that person and the office he or she holds by using the proper title. Twenty-one states in the United States use the title of "district attorney" to refer to the chief prosecutor of a jurisdiction. To properly address a district attorney in a letter, there are several considerations to be taken.

Sample Letter

Sample Letter to District Attorney

Sample Letter to District Attorney About Case

Part 1
Addressing a Letter to a District Attorney

  1. Image titled Address a District Attorney in a Letter Step 1
    Research the name of the person you wish to address. If you do not already know the name of the district attorney in your jurisdiction, you can find it online by searching for the website of the "office of the district attorney" or "district attorney's office" in your area.
    • "District attorney" is the title of the chief prosecutor of a jurisdiction within only 21 of the 50 states. Other jurisdictions may use "attorney general," "county attorney," "prosecuting attorney," "state's attorney," "state attorney," "commonwealth's attorney," "circuit attorney," "solicitor," or "district attorney general."[1]
  2. Image titled Address a District Attorney in a Letter Step 2
    Write the inside address. The inside address includes the recipient's full name, title, and address.[2] For example, "The Honorable Jane Doe, District Attorney for San Diego County, 330 W Broadway #1300, San Diego, CA 92101."
    • "The Honorable" is used to refer to elected officials.[3] 47 of the 50 states elect their chief prosecutors by popular election in each jurisdiction.[4]
    • If your jurisdiction's chief prosecutor is appointed rather than elected (Alaska, Connecticut, New Jersey, and District of Columbia), use Mr. or Ms. instead of "The Honorable."
  3. Image titled Address a District Attorney in a Letter Step 3
    Write the salutation. The salutation, or greeting, normally begins with "Dear." It is acceptable to begin your salutation with "Dear Mr./Madame District Attorney" or "Dear Mr./Ms. (surname)."[5]
    • The term "Dear" is always appropriate in a business situation and does not mean that the person is dear to you. It is simply a proper opening salutation.

Part 2
Writing Your Letter

  1. Image titled Address a District Attorney in a Letter Step 4
    Verify that your question or concern is best addressed to the district attorney. The district attorney may not have the authority to address your concern, and may simply refer you to another office. If you are not sure to whom you should address your concern, consider telephoning the district attorney's office or contacting an attorney.
    • If you are making unsolicited contact with the district attorney or his or her office, you may not be entitled to attorney-client privilege, and your communication may not be confidential.[6]
    • If you are a defendant in a criminal case and are represented by an attorney, the district attorney may be prohibited from communicating with you without your attorney's consent.[7]
  2. Image titled Address a District Attorney in a Letter Step 5
    Organize your thoughts prior to writing your letter. Write down the most important points that you wish to make. Think about what the district attorney needs to hear, not just what you want to say. Imagine yourself talking to the district attorney in person in a rational manner and write it down.
    • Be brief. Explain your situation in as few words as possible, addressing the issue and the solution you would like to see. Remember that the district attorney is likely to be very busy, and he or she will be more receptive if a letter's author is considerate of his or her time.
    • Be professional in your language and positive in your approach. Try to keep your personal feelings out of your letter.
    • Keep your tone formal and respectful. Do not allow casual language or slang to creep in.
  3. Image titled Address a District Attorney in a Letter Step 6
    Review the letter before sending it. If possible, have someone else proofread it for clarity and typographical errors.


  • "District attorney" is not a proper noun, and does not need to be capitalized unless it is being used as a person's title. For example, "I have a question for District Attorney Johnson" versus "I have a question for the district attorney."
  • Type your letter rather than handwriting it, if you can. If you must handwrite, be sure to write clearly and legibly.

Article Info

Categories: Official Writing and Complaints