The reader often sees your date header first, so it's important that you make a good first impression by writing the date correctly. Writing the date properly is an important skill for a variety of occasions, including writing a check, personal or business letters and party invitations. While there are a number of shortcut variations to write out a date, writing in a proper, accepted United States format ensures it suits both business correspondence and casual social occasions.

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Write the name of the month such as April, making sure to capitalize the first letter of the month name. If you are writing a letter, the date should begin approximately 2 inches from the top of the page in the upper right corner.

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Write the day number followed by the appropriate ending. If the day is the 11th day of April, your date, up until this point, should read "April 11th." For the first three days of the month use the following endings "1st," "2nd," "3rd," all other number endings conclude with "th." For less formal events and business letters remove the "th" entirely.

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Place a comma after the number ending and write the complete year, such as 2014. Your date should now read, "April 11th, 2014." For business correspondence, the date should instead read, "April 11, 2014."

Tip

  • Writing out the name of the month helps avoid confusion when corresponding with recipients in other countries. In some countries, the day is listed before the month, which may result in international confusion if writing the date with numbers in place of the month's name. Avoid shortcut versions of month names, such as "Feb," which may come across as too casual for a business letter.