A silly question. I obtained an offer letter, but the name on it is spelled incorrectly. Should I ask for a correction or simply sign the document and then return? If I ask for a correction, how long should I wait for a reply?
I definitely would try to get a fixed/revised offer if I were you, you avoid a lot of potential problems in the future both within the company and externally.
Just give the person listed on the letter a call or potentially email if they have been responsive and ask.
- "Hey, I am absolutely interested in accepting this but there is one small and awkward clarification, can you correct the spelling of my name? I don't know if it's a big deal or not but I would like to get that fixed prior to accepting"
Note that you are making it very clear you plan and want to accept. Framing your request this way makes it seem less awkward.
I've known people who have spent a while with HR trying to get their name fixed in all the different systems... email, ids, logins, etc.
Regarding timeframe, it's somewhat dependent on how long you have to get back to them. If they gave you 24 hours, you should call rather than email 100%. If it's longer you have more time - realistically the "how long should I wait?" piece is fairly dependent on how long you have.
This becomes important because of a variety of situations:
- Employment verification
- A lot of processes require this (I had an issue with my mortgage aplication because my company screwed up my employment verification and that wasn't even with a misspelled name!)
- Depending on where you live, the level of enforceability of the job offer may vary based on how accurate it is
- If anyone ever needs your offer as proof of something and compares to an ID it will look suspicious at best if they don't match
- Your email/id/login may depend on your name spelling
- This process can be awful at larger companies from my experience if you need to fix it
The risk behind a misspelled name and the above are not worth the small amount of work in order to get it fixed.
It's best to request a correct job offer letter, with your name spelled correctly.
If you ever sought to apply for a mortgage or lease, or you had to cross U.S. borders into another country for work related reasons, a formal and correct job offer on company letterhead is still considered an official document, as much as your letter of resignation would be.
It's a small typo and should be a quick fix. You're best off to keep all your ducks in a row, from the time you enter a new job until the day you resign.
You could take following actions
- Print your correct name clearly where you sign the offer letter
- In the cover letter, mention that you have spelled the name correctly in the letter and request them to correct the records before the job becomes official.
- Mention that you are ready to sign the corrected job offer letter if it is necessary to do so. In that case, they can issue revised job offer letter or get you sign it when you go for joining.