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Major Differences Between Yours Sincerely and Yours Faithfully in 2021

Filed in Education by on April 26, 2021

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Difference Between Yours Sincerely and Yours Faithfully: How you end a letter is as important as every other part of the letter.

Difference Between Yours Sincerely and Yours Faithfully

Using the wrong complimentary closes can damage the goodwill you have built up in the rest of your communication. Very often letter writers are confused about when it’s most appropriate to use ‘yours sincerely’ or ‘yours faithfully.’

The complimentary close is the word (such as “Sincerely”) or phrase (“Best wishes”) that conventionally appears before the sender’s signature or name at the end of a letter, email, or similar text.

Yours Sincerely and Yours Faithfully

Sincerely and faithfully are two adverbs that are often used as complementary endings informal letters. Sincerely is an adverb that means in a sincere or genuine way. The word ‘sincerely’ is often used at the end of letters as ‘yours sincerely’ or ‘sincerely yours’.

‘Yours sincerely’ is mostly used in this manner only when the name of the recipient of the letter is known. It is used when the letter starts with salutations like Dear Mr./Ms./Mrs./Miss. etc. followed by the name of the person.

Faithfully is another word that is used commonly informal emails and letters. Faithfully is an adverb that implies loyalty. The expression yours faithfully is used at the end of formal letters, when the name of the recipient of not known.

If you are writing to someone but you only know his or her gender, you can address them as Dear Sir or Dear Madam. The correct complimentary close, in this case, would be ‘yours faithfully’ followed by your initials and surname. In this case, the salutation would read ‘Dear Madam’ and the complimentary close would be ‘Yours faithfully, M. S. Smith.’

If the person that you are writing to is not an acquaintance then use a more formal tone with a formal salutation and the complimentary close, ‘Yours faithfully.’

Difference Between Yours Sincerely and Yours Faithfully

Although non-business letters are less formal today, it is still necessary to use the correct salutation and complimentary close. I personally use ‘Yours faithfully’ in all business letters, while I use ‘Yours sincerely’ for most of my informal correspondence.

Sometimes I also use or ‘Yours truly,’ ‘Yours respectfully,’ or ‘best regards,’ but I always choose my complimentary close carefully and make sure that the salutation matches.

Notable Differences Between Yours Sincerely and Yours Faithfully

1. ‘Yours sincerely’ is the complimentary close to use when you know the name and title of the person you are writing to, while ‘Yours faithfully’ is the one to use when you do not know the person’s name.

2. ‘Yours faithfully’ is used in business and other formal letters while ‘Yours sincerely’ is used in friendly letters.

3. ‘Yours faithfully’ is used with the salutation ‘Dear Sir’ or ‘Dear Madam,’ while ‘Yours sincerely’ is used with the salutation ‘Dear Mr/Miss/Mrs/Ms’ followed by the name of the person.

4. Sincerely can be used in both formal and informal letters while faithfully is mainly used in formal letters.

5. Sincerely is used when the recipient is known. Faithfully is used when the recipient is unknown.

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