How Do I Correct an Undeliverable Order from Usps?

USPS has been around for a while but mistakes can happen on the part of either the sender or the addressee. Luckily, there are ways to prevent this. Verifying the recipient's name and address and making sure yours is provided, as well as affixing correct postage, can all go a long way to prevent delivery problems. But in case there is still undeliverable mail, you can also submit a Missing Mail application.

The agency we know as the United States Postal Service was officially founded in 1971, but its roots go as far back as 1775. Nonetheless, USPS is part of every American's lives. Naturally, that's quite a bit of mail and something can happen. How does one handle misdelivered or undeliverable mail? Read on, this guide will go over some different scenarios and options.

Prevention as the Best Defense

In order for mail to get to its destination, it needs to be properly and legibly addressed, show a legible return address and be properly stamped. This is important because the mail system is not designed to hold mail so customers can come in and pick it up.

Issues With Addressee and/or Return Address

  1. If the post office cannot deliver a piece of mail, they will use the return address to return it to sender. There's nothing anyone needs to do at this point except have the sender verify the addressee's name and address.
  2. If the piece of mail isn't addressed properly and there's no return address, it will be handled by the local post office or sent to the Mail Recovery Center.
  3. USPS does recommend that if your mail has not been delivered within 7 days from its mailing date, you can go to the post office and submit a search request, put the search request online using the Missing Mail application https://reg.usps.com/login?app=MRCS&appURL=https%3A%2F%2Fmissingmail.usps.com%2F. Or you can call the USPS Consumer Affairs Representative and they can submit the search request for you.

Postage Due Mail

  1. If there appears to be no postage and the sender's address is legible, it will be returned to sender.
  2. For mail without enough postage, then it is considered postage due and the mail carrier will often endorse it to show the amount of postage due. The amount due would have to be paid in cash before the mail can be delivered. It's suggested to call your local post office directly as not all mail carriers are able to collect postage payments.

Dead Mail

Dead mail occurs when one or more of the following situations happen along with no postage or postage due. When this happens, the mail goes to the Mail Recovery Center and the only way to possibly recover it is for a Missing Mail application to be submitted by either the sender or the addressee.

  1. No return address
  2. Return address and delivery address are identical or
  3. The same person or company or agency is listed as both the sender and the delivery address but the addresses differ.

Misdelivered Mail

A piece of mail is misdelivered when it goes to the wrong address or if it has the right address on it but the wrong person's name.

  1. For wrong address, simply place the mail back in the mailbox or hand it to the postal carrier. Please do not write or endorse the mail at this point.
  2. Correct address but the name of the recipient or resident does not match, simply write on the mail Not at This Address and hand it to the mail carrier or put it in a collection box. There's no need to mark out the address.

Why Did GetHuman Write "How Do I Correct an Undeliverable Order from Usps?"?

After thousands of US Postal Service customers came to GetHuman in search of an answer to this problem (and many others), we decided it was time to publish instructions. So we put together How Do I Correct an Undeliverable Order from Usps? to try to help. It takes time to get through these steps according to other users, including time spent working through each step and contacting US Postal Service if necessary. Best of luck and please let us know if you successfully resolve your issue with guidance from this page.

Why does GetHuman Write How-to Guides for US Postal Service Problems?

GetHuman has been working for over 10 years on sourcing information about big organizations like US Postal Service in order to help customers resolve customer service issues faster. We started with contact information and fastest ways to reach a human at big companies. Particularly ones with slow or complicated IVR or phone menu systems. Or companies that have self-serve help forums instead of a customer service department. From there, we realized that consumers still needed more detailed help solving the most common problems, so we expanded to this set of guides, which grows every day. And if you spot any issues with our How Do I Correct an Undeliverable Order from Usps? guide, please let us know by sending us feedback. We want to be as helpful as possible. If you appreciated this guide, please share it with your favorite people. Our free information and tools is powered by you, the customer. The more people that use it, the better it gets.

US Postal Service

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Handling Undeliverable Mail
How to resolve undeliverable mail
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