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How to Write a Letter of Intent to Retire

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Having made the decision to retire from your job, it is important to write a clear and well thought through letter of intent to retire. This letter needs to be addressed to your supervisor. It has two main functions: to make your decision and the retirement date official even if your supervisor already knows about it and to ensure that the HR and payroll processing departments have the information on file. This makes sure that your pending payments and benefits will be processed promptly.

Step 1:

Before starting out with the letter, make a mental note of what you want to say. Pause a moment. Think about the people you wish to thank who have supported you in your career over the years, the great projects you had the opportunity to work on and the experience you have gained with the company.

Step 2:

Start the letter with the commonly used official letter format. In the top left-hand corner, type your name, address and contact details. Follow this by the date and the name and title of your supervisor, the name of the company and its contact details.

Step 3:

Make the purpose of the letter clearly known in the first line or two. Mention that you are writing to formally express your intention to retire from the company. Mention the date on which your retirement will become effective. Make sure that this is a mutually agreed upon date between you and your supervisor.

Step 4:

Follow up your main announcement with words of appreciation and gratitude in the succeeding paragraph. Mention the people – your supervisors, colleagues, mentors, and assistants – who had a positive impact on you and supported you during your tenure with the company. Also, mention a few crucial projects you worked on. Thank the company and your supervisor for the opportunities. Sum this paragraph up with an acknowledgment of the valuable experience you gained. With humility, mention some of your accomplishments during that time.

Step 5:

Be considerate and empathetic. The fact that you are retiring could have various implications for the company and your coworkers. Express your interest in making the transition as smooth as possible when you write a letter of intent to retire. Offer to do everything you can to help the company, your supervisor and the team with the transition.

Step 6:

End the letter with best wishes for the company, your colleagues and supervisors. You could also mention your willingness to stay in touch with your supervisor and other associates. Sign off stating what an honor and privilege it has been to work under your supervisor or manager.


Neatly type the letter of intent to retire. Print a few copies. Sign and send it to your supervisor at least a few weeks in advance. Six weeks is recommended. That ensures that the official process of relieving you and wrapping up projects can begin well on time.


Refrain from any negative remarks or criticism of any policy, person or team in your retirement letter. Keep it positive. It's always best to leave with class.