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Can you edit letters of recommendation?

Written by  Jun 07, 2022

Letters of recommendation speak louder than anything when applying for a new job. A well-written letter can give you an edge over other applicants, and often are a requirement for high-ranking positions. But is it right to edit those letters, and when and how it should be done? Let's find out.

Let Professionals Handle It

If you feel that your recommendations require an update but are not sure how to do it right, it's better to entrust it to the experts. They have years of experience in editing them and know the thin line between improving them and making them look manipulated and suspicious. Moreover, delegating this will leave you more time to work on your resume and learn new skills. To get help in editing a letter of recommendation we suggest you follow this link. EssayEdge has over 20 years of experience and almost 8000 editing cases.

Is It Right to Edit Letters of Recommendation?

It is clear that you should not add or remove anything from a recommendation letter. If an institution you send it to finds out about it you will automatically be rejected, moreover, it is disrespectful of the person who wrote the letter in the first place. Meanwhile, there are some grey areas which include:

  • correcting spelling and punctuation mistakes
  • making stylistic changes
  • fixing wrong information (names, dates, grades, etc.)

While it won't temper with core messages of the letter, it still may be considered deceptive and morally wrong. Since you are not responsible for others' grammar mistakes the best way to deal with them is either to ask the person who wrote the letter to send you a corrected version or to send the letter as it is. This won't affect the way people on receiving end perceive you.

Unfortunately, if the letter of recommendation has false information it's absolutely necessary to correct it. Once again, the best way is to ask those who issued the letter to do it, but if it's not the case you'll have to do it on your own.

How to Edit Letters of Recommendation Yourself

When editing letters of recommendation yourself remember that your primary goal is to preserve the letter's credibility. This can be achieved if you communicate all the changes with the person who issued the letter. Before making any changes contact that person, explain what edits you are going to make and why, and ask for approval. If you get it, make a copy of the original document and make changes to it, preserving the original. Then send a redacted letter to a person who issued an original and ask him to add a short paragraph that all changes are approved, and also a signature.


The most important thing about a letter of recommendation is its credibility. So it's better not to make any edits on your own. In case they are absolutely necessary communicate any corrections with the person who issued a letter. And if you need to write such a letter yourself check out this article about how to write a reference letter for a friend.