Form letter B: To complainant re: Author

Form letters are examples of appropriate letters for various situations. Please find below the text of Form letter B: To complainant re: Author. You can copy this text and adjust it to your needs. The template is also available in Word or PDF format.

This form letter is used in the following decision trees:

1. Authorship complaints
2. Plagiarism complaints
3. Multiple, duplicate, concurrent publication/Simultaneous submission
4. Research results misappropriation
5. Allegations of research errors and fraud
6. Research standards violations
7. Undisclosed conflicts of interest

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Form letter B: To complainant re: Author

[letterhead of the journal editorial office or the editor’s general contact information]

[date]

[title of article, date of publication]

Dear [complainant],

As we have already discussed, I have contacted the author of the article in question with regard to the allegation raised by you in your initial communication of [date] (please see copy attached). I have now had a response from the author.

[The substance of the response is {description},]
OR
[Attached you will find a copy of the response from the author which addresses the
allegations made.]

Although ultimately it will be my responsibility to make a reasonable determination as to the
allegations made and possible responses or remedies, I would be very interested in your views and reactions.

Yours sincerely,

[editor name]

[editor-in-chief]


Once a decision has been reached and the authors notified, at the same time as (or any time after) making the decision public e.g. posting a retraction notice, you may wish to notify the complainant. You can copy this text and adjust it to your needs.

[letterhead of the journal editorial office or the editor’s general contact information]

[date]

[title of article, date of publication]

Dear [complainant],

I write with regard to the allegation raised by you in your initial communication of [date] (please see copy attached).

After a thorough investigation and review of the facts of the case[, including soliciting a response from the author and your views and reactions to that response], I have taken the decision to: [outcome].

If applicable: A copy of the [retraction notice / erratum / expression of concern] that [will be / has been] published is as follows:

[paste agreed text, after the authors of the complained about article have been informed].

If applicable: Thank you again for bringing your concerns to our attention; we are grateful for your contribution and dedication to ensuring the integrity of the scientific record.

Yours sincerely,

[editor name]

[Editor-in-Chief]