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Do I Have to Write a Two Weeks Notice Letter?

Are you wondering whether you need to write a two weeks notice letter before you leave your job? Technically, most people don’t need to. Most work contracts are at-will, meaning either party can terminate them at any time. Some workplaces have policies that require you to submit a two weeks notice, though.

But most employment experts in the United States believe you should write a two weeks notice. You’ll then give it to your employer 14 days before your last day. Below, we’ll get into the reasons you should write one. Then, we’ll show you how to write a two weeks notice.

Why You Need a Two Weeks Notice Letter

two weeks notice letter

ZipRecruiter is a job board that helps you transition from your old position to a new one. By creating your own ZipRecruiter profile, you can browse job postings and apply to positions. Employers can also reach out to you if they think you’re a good fit, which really takes the pressure off when you’re constantly applying to new positions!

But to land these jobs, you’ll probably need a few letters of recommendation. Most employers want to hear from people you’ve worked with before. They may ask them about your work style or behavior at the office.

As such, it’s important to preserve your relationships at work. This is true even if you don’t like your supervisor or coworkers.

Leaving in a sudden manner puts stress on them and could burn bridges. A two weeks notice letter gives them the proper amount of time to prepare.

It also allows you to set the tone of your resignation. If you write in a polite, professional manner, your employer might respond in a more positive way. This makes it easier for everyone to move on.

You Might Suffer Repercussions

two weeks notice letter

In some states, the law permits employers to penalize workers who don’t turn in a two weeks notice letter. These penalties usually take the form of giving up any unused sick or vacation leave. Usually, employers pay workers for any unused leave when they resign from the company. Depending on how much you have saved up, this could amount to thousands of dollars.

You also might have to give up any other accrued benefits.

Most employers include information on these policies in their employee handbooks. If you can’t find any information in the handbook, the employer might not have a policy in place. Still, you should try to give a two weeks notice whenever possible.

How to Write a Two Weeks Notice

two weeks notice letter

Now, you’re ready to learn how to write a two weeks notice. The process can be broken up into before, during, and after steps. Let’s get into each briefly.

Prior to giving your two weeks notice, you should start your job search. You want to spend as little time in between jobs as possible. The less time you spend employed, the more you’ll have to budget and save. So, you need to start your hunt at least a few weeks before you hand your notice in.

We recommend you start your search with ZipRecruiter as soon as you know you’re going to leave your position.  On ZipRecruiter, you can type your desired position into the search bar. Then, a list of jobs will come up. Review each one to see if you meet the qualifications (you might want to brush up on your skills) and apply right from the website.


Some people prefer to wait until they have a job lined up to write their two weeks notice letter. In general, this is the safest practice.

No matter when you decide to write your letter, you should start by figuring out when you want your last day to be. This will dictate when you hand your two weeks notice in.

Start your letter by listing the date, your manager’s name, and the company’s name in the top left corner. Then, include the company’s address.

Address the letter to your manager. Spend the first paragraph politely stating your intent to resign. Mention that your last day will be precisely two weeks from the date you turn the letter in.

Then, thank your manager for the opportunities they’ve given you. Express appreciation for the ways you’ve been able to grow.

Finally, offer to help out before you leave. Your employer might want to have you train a replacement.


After you’ve written the letter, turn it in. You’ll want to hand it to your boss exactly 14 days before your last day.

Then, ask your employer what you need to do to wrap up your work.

If you don’t have a job yet, continue to use ZipRecruiter to search for positions. Set aside time every day to log into your account and apply to a job or two.

Get Started on the Next Part of Your Career

Before you’ve handed in your two weeks notice letter, you need to make sure you’re ready to start on the next part of your career. As you do this, you should ask yourself what you want out of your next position. Then, sign up for ZipRecruiter to get specialized recommendations for jobs that match your skills!

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