'As Per My Last Email': Meaning, Alternatives, Ways to Reply

By Sophia Merton, updated on February 21, 2023

Did you receive an email that uses the phrase ‘as per my last email,’ and you’re wondering what it means?

In short, this is a very common expression used in emails that points to the content of an email that the person had previously sent. ‘As per my last email’ might be used if a question had already been answered in an earlier email or if they did not receive a response they felt was sufficient to an email they sent. This phrase can sometimes come off as passive-aggressive, even if the sender doesn’t intend it that way.

What Does 'As Per My Last Email' Mean?

‘As per my last email’ is a commonly used phrase in email communications.

In some instances, it is used as a polite way to remind someone that you have already answered the question they are asking or to point back to a previous communication that hasn’t been responded to yet. In others, however, it is a passive-aggressive means to tell someone that they should have thoroughly read their previous email before asking for information that was already provided or to scold them for not having responded to an important email.

Helpful note: Someone is considered to be acting ‘passive-aggressive’ if they express negative feelings indirectly rather than addressing them openly.

This is a tricky phrase because the intent of the sender and the interpretation of the reader don’t always align. The person writing ‘as per my last email’ might not mean to sound passive-aggressive– they may simply be politely referring back to a point they’ve already made in response.

However, that doesn’t mean that the reader won’t read the phrase as passive-aggressive, as some could see this as a way of saying, ‘don’t ask me questions until you’ve gone back and actually read my previous email.’

What Are Some Alternative Ways to Say 'As Per My Last Email'?

Email communications can be very difficult because you can’t hear the tone of voice a person is using. This means that even if you don’t intend something to come off as passive-aggressive, the recipient might still interpret it that way.

Since ‘as per my last email’ can come off as passive-aggressive (and perhaps is often intended to be passive-aggressive,) it can be a good idea to find other ways to convey a similar message.

Let’s discuss a few general tips to avoid being passive-aggressive when you need to remind someone about an email that you already sent and they clearly didn’t thoroughly read, along with examples of appropriate alternative ways to essentially say ‘as per your last email.’

Be Direct Rather Than Passive-Aggressive

You might be worried that speaking too directly comes off as aggressive, but this is often a better choice than being passive-aggressive. It’s generally a good idea to simply say what you mean rather than couching it in an air of disingenuousness.

If someone hasn’t responded to an email yet or hasn’t followed up on the action you outlined in a previous email, you will want to reply to the same email thread to make it easy to reference your original message. A few examples of other ways to say ‘as per my last email’ in this context include:

  • “Checking in on this [assignment/question/request].”
  • “Following up on this [assignment/question/request].”
  • “I need your input on this [assignment/question/request] by [date/time].”

Pose a Question

Asking direct questions can be a great way to gain the attention of someone. Most people get dozens of emails a day, and it’s easy for things to get lost in the shuffle. Consider asking a question rather than saying ‘as per my last email,’ such as:

  • Can you complete [this specific task] by [date/time]?
  • Do you have the time to complete [this specific task] by the requested date?
  • Can you get on a quick call to discuss [this assignment/question/request]?”
  • What are your thoughts about [this assignment/question/request]?”

As you can see, asking a question gives the person something to which they can directly respond, which can remove the passive-aggressive tone.

Reiterate Your Point

Depending on the nature and importance of the point you made in your previous email, you might feel that it’s worth restating what you have said before.

For example, let’s say you have already sent an email to a coworker telling them that the deadline for edits on a report is next Monday. If they haven’t responded yet and you feel it’s important to reiterate the point, you might say something like:

  • “Here is the report for you to review and edit. The edits are due by next Monday, so we can continue to move forward on the project. For additional information, please see below.”
  • “I’m following up on the edits for the report. In order to move forward, we’ll need your edits by next Monday. Please see below for more information.”
  • “I just want to reiterate this point because I feel it is crucial to the project.”

Saying “please see below for more information” is a gentler way to point to the fact that you have already sent this information (as the previous emails will be displayed in the thread under your current email) than the sometimes snarky ‘as per my last email.’

Pick Up the Phone

Sometimes it’s just easier to give someone a call rather than reply to their email or track them down after they haven’t responded.

If the person asked you a question that you already answered in a previous email, you might find that reiterating your point over the phone might help to communicate it more clearly. If they haven’t responded to your email and you need them to follow up, a phone call might be able to give you the information you need and help you avoid sending a passive-aggressive message.

Stop By in Person

If you work in the same office as the person to whom you intend to send an ‘as per my last email’ message, you might consider actually stopping by their office to discuss the topic. Email can be difficult because there is no tone or body language to read, and having an in-person one-on-one might make communication simpler, more efficient, and less prone to misinterpretation.

Are you honing your email writing skills? Check out these articles on how to start an email, how to end an email, and how to write a formal email.

How to Reply to ‘As Per My Last Email’

If you are on the receiving end of a message that uses the phrase ‘as per my last email,’ you might feel that the person is being passive-aggressive– and you might be right. It can be tempting to react defensively, but it’s often best to be direct and avoid stooping to the level of passive aggression.

One way you can respond if someone is pointing toward an email they already sent is to simply begin by saying “thanks for the reminder” and then launch into a further response if you have more to say on the topic.

Another short and sweet response is to say, “thanks for the recap of our last conversation.”

If someone is pestering you about a topic you don’t have any new information about, you can say something along the lines of “I don’t have any updates at this time, but I will notify you when I do.”

Final Thoughts on ‘As Per My Last Email’

‘As per my last email’ seems like a straightforward enough phrase at first glance, but it has gained a reputation as being one of the more classic passive-aggressive email phrases used in the modern workplace. 

The difficulty with this phrase is that it can be a genuine and well-meaning communication that there is useful information in a previous email that isn’t intended to be the least bit snarky. However, it can also be intended or received as a passive-aggressive way to chastise someone for not having thoroughly read a previous email.

For this reason, it’s a good idea to fill your arsenal with professional alternatives to ‘as per my last email’ as well as direct and clear responses when you find yourself on the receiving end.

Are you ready to dive into some more English expressions? Check out our idioms blog for idioms, common phrases, sayings, and more!

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Written By:
Sophia Merton
Sophia Merton is one of the lead freelance writers for WritingTips.org. Sophia received her BA from Vassar College. She is passionate about reading, writing, and the written word. Her goal is to help everyone, whether native English speaker or not, learn how to write and speak with perfect English.

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