In this thread it is explained that package indentfirst interacts with section headings, which a letter does not have.

So, how can I get L(u)aTeX to do that, i.e. indent the first paragraph of a letter? Moreover, in my letters none of the paragraphs are getting indented, so I could also use help with that. (It happened in several letters, with different options / packages, so I'm assuming it's supposed to be that way -- and that's why I did not provide a minimal working example). Thanks in advance!

EDIT: As requested, here's a minimal example:



\date{February 31, 2013}
\address{ 22nd Baking Street }
\signature{Your Truly's Name}

\begin{letter}{ R. MaDillo  }
\opening{Dear Dr. R. MaDillo,}
 Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Donec bibendum
 suscipit odio, id dapibus ipsum placerat vitae. Quisque vitae magna vel ante
 semper dapibus sit amet eu elit. Fusce cursus sodales eros, non porta urna
 bibendum et.

 Vivamus dictum pretium iaculis. Suspendisse eros ligula, laoreet elementum
 lobortis vel, blandit tincidunt enim. Aenean eget augue dolor. Sed ut magna
 nec nulla euismod pharetra. Proin diam turpis, tincidunt et fermentum id,
 porta ut nulla.

 \closing{Yours sincerely,}
  • What document class are you using for letters? the standard letter class or something else? Perhaps a working example would help here.
    – Alan Munn
    Commented Sep 9, 2013 at 16:29
  • 1
    Normally letters set \parindent to 0pt and \parskip to some positive space. But you can easily change this. Commented Sep 9, 2013 at 16:32

1 Answer 1


You could try to


but you probably would like to put this command after the \opening{} so as not to indent this as well.

  • 2
    Possibly also \setlength{\parskip}{0pt plus 0.1pt}: using indentation and a paragraph skip is bad style.
    – egreg
    Commented Sep 9, 2013 at 16:45
  • @egreg, I quite like how it looks with both the indentation and paragraph skip. I suppose the idea of good and bad style advice is to let people know what the majority of people find pleasing and I might just be an outlier. Or perhaps this advice is meant for documents that will be printed in paper and thus one shouldn't use both to save trees? As a matter of fact, I'm also using onehalfspacing to give the letter more "air" :)
    – Ricardo
    Commented Apr 7, 2020 at 2:12

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .