Authorization Letter: How to Write (with Templates & Samples)

You’ve probably noticed the copyright notices on musicians’ and artists’ work that says you can’t reproduce or use their work without their consent. If you planned to ask for that permission, you’d need an authorization letter, but there are many other times when you might use explicit written permission. For example, you may need to give someone else, like minor children, family members, or even hospitals, your consent for various activities or sign over power of attorney. How do you write an authorization letter, and when should you use it? We’ll explain everything you need to know about authorization letters and give you some great examples so you know what to include.

What Is an Authorization Letter?

An authorization letter is a document where one person, typically the responsible party, gives consent to another for specific actions or activities. In business, it can imbue an individual with legal authority to act. Non-business authorization letters are also common and include the use of property like tools or even land, allowing a minor child to travel without their parent or guardian present, and medical record release forms.

Authorization Letter Templates

Authorization Letter For Bank - Word, PDF

Authorization Letter For Minor To Travel - Word, PDF

Authorization Letter For Passport - Word, PDF

Authorization Letter To Claim - Word, PDF

Authorization Letter To Sell Car On Someone Behalf - Word, PDF

Authorization Letter To Transfer Account - Word, PDF

Authorization To Get Documents - Word, PDF

Business Authorization Letter - Word, PDF

Credit Card Authorization Letter - Word, PDF

Informal Guardianship Authorization Letter - Word, PDF

Letter Giving Grandparents Medical Authority - Word, PDF

Letter of Authorization Giving Permission - Word, PDF

Letter Of Authorization Template - Word, PDF

Medical Authorization Letter - Word, PDF

Medical Authorization Letter Template - Word, PDF

Permission Letter Of Authorization From Property Owner - Word, PDF

Power Of Attorney Authorization Letter - Word, PDF

Background Check Authorization Form - PDF

Credit Report Authorization Form - Word, PDF

Direct Deposit Authorization Form - Word, PDF

Hotel Credit Card Authorization Form - Word, PDF

Medical Records Release Authorization Form - Word, PDF

    When Do You Need an Authorization Letter?

    Anytime part of an agreement requires written consent, you need an authorization letter. Although verbal contracts are considered binding, they are hard to prove legally, so creating an authorization letter helps define and enforce the agreement. The holder of the letter may act on behalf of the signor to the extent the letter allows. Below is a list of times when you need an authorization letter.

    • To Access Private or Protected Data- This can include medical records, sealed files, wills, or any other information generally reserved from public view. Private data can be sensitive, like sealed court records or personal. These authorization letters may come with a clause that involves not discussing it.
    • To Use Private Property or Belongings- You probably don’t need a contract if you’re loaning your neighbor the weedwhacker. However, there are times when it’s wise or necessary to issue or request an authorization letter, especially when using something expensive since you are responsible for any damages.
    • To Use Intellectual Property or Reproduce Music and Art- If someone else created something and you wish to use it, you usually need an authorization letter. There are exceptions for works that are considered to be in the public domain (owned by no one) and fair use, such as journalism and parody.
    • To Access Restricted Work Areas or Land- Public land like roadways and national parks are generally available to everyone. Alternately, private land and restricted areas typically require an authorization letter. In some cases, this is for safety reasons, but it can also be permission to be somewhere when the owner is not home or present.
    • To Act On Behalf of Individuals- Lawyers and family members often need to obtain authorization letters to act on behalf of someone ill, elderly, or otherwise in need of assistance.
    • To Act as an Agent for Groups or Businesses- When employers or groups such as clubs, churches, and organizations that are not-for-profit need a representative, they may issue an authorization letter to an individual to take action on their behalf. For example, if one of these entities needs to build a larger facility, they wouldn’t bring everyone to go look at locations. Instead, an individual or small team with specific permission to negotiate prices on behalf of the larger entity would be employed, and they’d need an authorization letter to spend the necessary funds.

    Writing an Authorization Letter

    Writing an authorization letter is very straightforward. You need to include specific language that says exactly who is acting on your behalf and what the scope of those actions are. Remember to keep the letter concise and professional, and always ensure that it is typed and printed but has a handwritten signature. You need a basic header, a greeting, the body of the letter, and a closing statement. In some cases, you will also need to leave space at the bottom for it to be notarized, in which case you shouldn’t sign it until the notary asks you to.

    Authorization Letter Template

    Your Name

    Your Address

    The Date: ___/___/___/

    The Recipient’s Name

    Recipient’s Address

    To Recipient’s Name,

    I (Your Full Name Here) authorize and give full authority to (Full Name of Responsible Party) for (list primary objective and reason). (Optional date range or ‘until further notice) From ___/___/_____ to ___/___/_____, you are expected to (list specific actions).

    Thank you for your time and assistance in this matter. If you need to contact me, I can be reached at (Phone Number) xxx-xxx-xxxx or (Email) [email protected]________.com

    Sincerely,

    (Your Printed Name Here)

    Signature Here

    Sample Medical Authorization Letter Template

    Unlike most professional forms, authorization letters don’t necessarily require a title at the top of the page. These letters look more like personal letters than a form once you’ve filled in all the necessary information. Medical authorization is often given to a doctor to care for a child, as in the example below.

    Jane Doe

    123 W. Maine Street

    Springfield, Il.

    The Date: 12/18/2029

    Dr. L. Fitz

    987 Alphabet Avenue

    Los Angeles, CA

    To Recipient’s Name,

    I Jane Doe, authorize and give full authority to Doctor Lara Fitz for administering necessary medical care to my daughter Elizabeth Doe. This is valid while my child is under the care of Dr. Fitz or until revoked in writing by me.

    Thank you for your time and assistance in this matter. If you need to contact me, I can be reached at 555-555-8473 or [email protected]

    Child’s Information

    Full Name: Elizabeth Anne Doe

    Address: 123 W. Maine Street, Springfield, Il.

    Date of Birth: 01-01-2019

    Child’s Health Information

    Health Conditions: Cleft Palate

    Allergies: Peanuts and shellfish

    Prescription Medications: None

    Emergency Contact Person’s

    Full Name: Mary Harbatkin (Maternal Grandmother)

    Address: 9795 W. Hollywood Street, Los Angeles, CA

    Phone No.: 555-555-0972

    Email: [email protected]

    Sincerely,

    Jane Maria Doe

    Signature Here

    Sample Business Authorization Letter

    Business authorization letters are usually issued to allow a third party to represent you in important business matters. In this example we’ll say ‘negotiations’, but it can be any aspect of business where you need a stand-in or agent.

    Jane Doe

    123 W. Maine Street

    Springfield, Il.

    The Date: 12/18/2027

    John Alan Smith

    123 W. Spring Street

    Alphabet, NC

    To Whom It May Concern,

    I Jane Doe, authorize and give full authority to John Alan Smith to represent me in the upcoming negotiations for the Sylvan Contract until further notice. I will be unable to attend these meetings as I will be in Los Angeles while my child has surgery.

    Thank you for your time and assistance in this matter. If you need to contact me, I can be reached at 555-555-8473 or [email protected]

    Sincerely,

    Jane Doe

    (Signature Here) Date: 12/18/2027

    Sample Letter Giving Grandparents Medical Authority

    An authorization letter giving grandparents medical authority is simply allowing a family member to seek care for your child. This may be necessary when they travel or visit for an extended period of time. Technically any non-guardian or non-parent needs this to seek medical care for a minor.

    Jane Doe

    123 W. Maine Street

    Springfield, Il.

    The Date: 12/18/2022

    Mr. and Mrs. Andrew Doe

    904 W. South Street

    Springfield, Il.

    To Whom It May Concern,

    I Jane Doe, authorize and give full authority to Mr. and Mrs. Andrew Doe to seek medical treatment for my daughter (their granddaughter) Elizabeth Anne Doe. From 01/01/’2023 to 01/01/’2024 Elizabeth’s grandparents will be caring for her and may seek any necessary or relevant medical or dental services she may need.

    Child’s Information

    Full Name: Elizabeth Anne Doe

    Address: 123 W. Maine Street, Springfield, Il.

    Date of Birth: 01-01-2019

    Child’s Health Information

    Health Conditions: Cleft Palate

    Allergies: Peanuts and shellfish

    Prescription Medications: None

    Emergency Contact Person’s

    Full Name: Myself or Mary Harbatkin (Maternal Grandmother)

    Address: 9795 W. Hollywood Street, Los Angeles, CA

    Phone No.: 555-555-0972

    Email: [email protected]

    Thank you for your time and assistance in this matter. If you need to contact me, I can be reached at 555-555-8473 or [email protected]

    Sincerely,

    Jane Doe

    (Signature Here) Date: The Date: 12/18/2022

    Sample Authorization Letter for Bank

    Bank authorization letters are rare, but still occasionally used. With checks and credit cards you will likely never have to deal with writing authorization letters for the bank. However, these letters can authorize either a one-time or recurring charge from a business.

    John Alan Smith

    123 W. Spring Street

    Alphabet, NC

    12/01/2022

    Fred’s Knitwear

    98204 Base Drive

    Alphabet, NC

    To: Fred’s Knitwear

    I John Smith authorize Freds Knitwear to make a one (1) time debit to my checking or savings account.

    I, John Smith, hereby give Freds Knitwear permission to debit my account for $500.55 on or after 12/23/2028. This is permission for a single transaction only and no further charges or credits apply.

    Bank Details

    ☐ Checking ☐ Savings

    Account Name: John’s Checking Account

    Bank Name: Bank of Western October

    Account Number: 12873928642389

    Routing Number: 0971242652375

    This payment is for a small blanket.

    John Smith

    (Signature Here) Date: 12/01/2028


    Parties Involved in an Authorization Letter

    There are usually three parties involved in an authorization letter. The first party holds the original rights. The second party is the one with whom they are doing business. The third party is the representative to whom the first party is giving authorization. This means the third party acts on behalf of the first when dealing with the second party. For example, you might authorize a doctor to obtain medical records from another provider, or a business can authorize an agent to take specific actions on their part.

    FAQs

    Authorization letters are used in many circumstances, so you probably have more questions. We’ve answered the top ten questions asked by people who wanted to write authorization letters. Below you’ll find plenty of useful information to demystify authorization letters.

    What makes an authorization valid?

    An authorization is valid when signed by the responsible party (aka- someone who has the legal right to offer the agreement). Additionally, some authorization letters require a certification from a notary public. The only other requirement is that the activities and recipient must be legally eligible to do whatever is detailed in the letter. So, for example, you couldn’t authorize a 10-year-old to drive your car while you’re out of town even if it is insured for additional drivers because they can’t have a license.

    How long is an authorization letter valid for?

    Not all authorization letters have or need expiration dates stated as they are for specific events or actions. That said, you can always include an end date if you feel it necessary. The expiration date you put on your authorization letter is as binding as the letter itself. However, you can also revoke your authorization in writing any time prior to a letter’s expiration date.

    Can you handwrite an authorization letter?

    You should never handwrite an authorization letter. Although a handwritten document might stand up in court, it will rarely pass inspection elsewhere. Please type your authorization letters. Only the signature should be in pen ink.

    Does a letter of authorization need to be notarized?

    Many authorization letters need to be notarized, but it’s not always a requirement. Typically, if your authorization needs a notary endorsement there will be an indication of the requirement. For example, a business needs to have a notary certify the form if they are giving legal or representative power to an individual.

    How do I authorize someone to pick up my passport?

    To authorize someone to pick up your passport you need to write them an authorization letter. Additionally, the issuer will need copies of both your ID and the ID from the responsible party. Bring the originals unless otherwise indicated.

    Can a family member pick up my passport?

    A family member can pick up your passport. They will need a letter of authorization and a copy of their own identification card and yours. This can be a driver’s license or a state-issued ID card

    What is an authorization letter for a medical report?

    An authorization letter for a medical report is written by the person whose records are needed. This usually asks for a copy or certified copy of a specific medical report. Doctors, medical reviewers, and others may use these to request documentation from a particular surgery, illness, or another hospital stay.

    Is an authorization letter a power of attorney?

    Not all authorizations are for power of attorney, but they can be. If your authorization letter spells out the power of attorney or right to act on someone’s behalf legally, then it is a power of attorney. However, other types of authorization letters do not imbue the recipient with a power of attorney.

    How do you end or close an authorization letter?

    Always use a formal closing when you end an authorization letter. Usually, this means “Sincerely, Yours Truly,” or a similar professional sentiment. Below that, you should type or print and sign your name. The only time there is writing below that is when you have saved space for witnesses and a notary public endorsement.

    Does an authorization letter need a signature?

    An authorization letter does need a signature. Without the signature of the writer, the letter isn’t valid. Even a notary public can’t verify a form with no signature from the original, responsible party.

    Final Thoughts

    Creating an authorization letter isn’t difficult. Once you know what to write, it only takes a few moments to make a simple authorization. However, we recommend using a professionally designed template like our downloadable forms. Everyone needs to sign an authorization now and then, and having a ready-to-use form on hand can make it simple and much faster. Plus, you’ll know you didn’t miss any vital information. The intent is the same, but there are a lot of small variations depending on what you are authorizing.