How to Create a Company Cancellation Policy [with Examples]

A company cancellation policy is one of those things that a lot of small businesses don’t think they need—until they do. After a few clients cancel right before an appointment or miss one altogether, the lost time and profit can no longer be ignored.

Thankfully, making your own company cancellation policy is relatively easy. We’ll walk you through what every company cancellation policy should have, provide you with some ready-to-use templates, and give you some tips on how to prevent last minute cancellations in this resource.

What should a company cancellation policy include?

The purpose of a company cancellation policy is to limit when, how, and why a client can cancel an appointment or service without penalty. While each company tends to have a different cancellation policy based on their services, every cancellation policy template should have three key pieces of information:

  • A timeframe to cancel a service with or without penalty. How long do you want to give the client to cancel without penalty and when does the penalty kick in? 24- to 48-hour notice periods are the most common among small businesses. Make sure you send along your cancellation policy as soon as possible to ensure that your client is fully informed about your policy in advance.
  • A penalty for a late cancellation. Are you going to charge a standard rebooking fee, a percentage of the cost of the service, or something else?
  • Contact information for cancellations. Determine whether you want to be notified via text, email, or by phone and be sure to provide contact details like the email address or phone number you want the client to use.
  • A place to sign off. Sending your client a cancellation policy is one thing, but having them sign off on your policy is another. Including an area where your client can sign their name and write the date the policy was acknowledged can help you avoid chargebacks and ensure that everything is clear as day.

If you aren’t sure exactly how to word your own cancellation policy, don’t worry—we’ve got you covered in the next section!

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Ready-to-use company cancellation policy examples

To give you a hand, we’ve created three different company cancellation policy templates for you to use. Feel free to add these to your own contracts, but don’t forget to customize the dates and fees!

Short and sweet

Cancellation Policy – [Company Name]

Cancellations made [48 hours] or less before an appointment will be subject to a [rebooking fee of $50].

Cancellations made via [customer’s email to [email protected]] sooner than [48 hours] before an appointment will be processed without penalty.

Snappy and straightforward

Cancellation Policy – [Company Name]

Please be advised that cancellations made up to [48 hours] before a scheduled appointment via [email, text, phone call] will be processed without a penalty.

Cancellations made [48 hours] or less before an appointment will be subject to a charge of [half of the service rate]. This includes appointments where our service provider is unable to access the property, is turned away, or the client is unavailable.

If [Company Name] cancels an appointment with less than [48 hours notice], a new appointment will be scheduled without penalty to the client, subject to availability.

Direct and detailed

Cancellation Policy – [Company Name]

Please note that once you have booked an appointment with us it means that we have reserved time in our schedule exclusively for you. If you cancel your appointment less than [24 hours] before it is scheduled to take place, you will be subject to a [penalty/fee/rebooking charge of [$__].

To avoid a cancellation fee, please provide cancellation notice at least [24 hours] prior to your appointment.
You can cancel or reschedule an appointment by emailing us at [[email protected]], texting [xxx-xxx-xxxx], or calling our office at [xxx-xxx-xxxx].

Preventing no-shows, canceled appointments, and missed income

While creating a company cancellation policy and including it in your contract is a great way to make sure that you don’t miss out completely when a client cancels at the last minute, the best-case scenario would be to prevent the cancellation from happening in the first place.

One of the simplest things you can do is to remind your clients of an appointment before it happens by giving them a call, sending out an email, or shooting them a text.

If you don’t have time to send out reminders yourself, you can always use automated client notification software, like Jobber, to do the heavy lifting for you.

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Getting ahead of cancellations

While a last minute cancellation is usually unintentional on your client’s part, you’ve still lost out on time and income because of it.

By creating a solid company cancellation policy and coupling that with appointment reminders, you’ll be protecting your business and providing your clients with a value-add they’re sure to appreciate!

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