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243 Prices and Eligibility

1.0 Prices and Fees for Standard Mail

1.1 Price Application

Postage is based on the price that applies to the weight (postage) increment of each addressed piece.

1.2 Standard Mail Price Application

Standard Mail prices are based on the weight of the pieces as follows:

a. The appropriate minimum per piece price applies to any Standard Mail piece that weighs 3.3 ounces (0.2063 pound) or less.

b. A price determined by adding the per piece charge and the corresponding per pound charge applies to any Standard Mail piece that weighs more than 3.3 ounces.

1.3 Regular Standard Mail—ECR, Automation, and Nonautomation Prices

For prices see Notice 123–Price List.

1.4 Nonprofit Standard Mail—ECR, Automation, and Nonautomation Prices

For prices see Notice 123–Price List.

1.5 Fees

1.5.1 Presort Mailing Fee

A mailing fee must be paid each 12-month period for each permit used to mail Standard Mail and/or Parcel Select Lightweight pieces, except for qualifying full-service automation mailings under 3.4 and 705.23.0; (see Notice 123—Price List).

1.5.2 Weighted Fee

For return of pieces bearing the ancillary service markings “Address Service Requested” and “Forwarding Service Requested.” Weighted fee equals single-piece First-Class Mail or Priority Mail price (plus the nonmachinable surcharge, if applicable) multiplied by 2.472.

1.6 Computing Postage for Standard Mail

1.6.1 Weight

To compute the total weight of the addressed pieces in a mailing or mailing segment for:

a. Identical-weight pieces, multiply the computed average weight of a single piece by the corresponding number of pieces; do not round the product.

b. Nonidentical-weight pieces, add the actual weight of the individual pieces or weigh the entire mailing in bulk; do not round either result.

1.6.2 Determining Single-Piece Weight

To determine single-piece weight in a mailing of identical-weight pieces, weigh a sample group of at least 10 randomly selected pieces and divide the total sample weight by the number of pieces in the sample. To determine single-piece weight in a mailing of nonidentical-weight pieces, weigh each piece individually. Express all single-piece weights in decimal pounds, rounded off to four decimal places.

1.6.3 Net Postage

Postage is computed at the applicable prices on the entire mailing to be mailed at one time. The net postage price is either the applicable minimum per piece price or the piece/pound price, as adjusted for any discounts and surcharges.

1.6.4 Per Piece and Per Pound Charges

The per piece charge is computed based on the total number of addressed pieces for each price category claimed. The minimum price may apply to each piece as detailed in 1.2. Otherwise, the per piece charge must be added to the per pound charge to determine total postage. Where applicable, the per pound charge is computed based on the total weight of the addressed pieces for each price category claimed, and is added to the per piece charge to determine total postage. For example, a quantity of pieces weighing 100.25 pounds is charged 100.25 times the applicable price per pound, based on the price claimed, plus one unit of the applicable per piece charge for each addressed piece.

1.6.5 Computing Affixed Postage

To compute postage to be affixed to each piece, multiply the weight of the piece (in pounds) by the applicable price per pound; add the applicable per piece charge and any surcharge; and round the sum up to the next tenth of a cent. The applicable minimum per piece charge must be affixed if it is more than the total computed per piece postage.

1.6.6 Computing Affixed Postage—Heavy Letters

To compute postage to be affixed to each piece, multiply the weight of the piece (in pounds) by the applicable price per pound; add the applicable per piece charge, subtract the heavy letter discount (see 1.6.8 through 1.6.9); and round the sum up to the next tenth of a cent.

1.6.7 Permit Imprint

In any permit imprint mailing:

a. For each price or price category, multiply the number of addressed pieces by the corresponding price per piece and (if applicable) multiply the unrounded total weight of the pieces by the corresponding price per pound; round off each product to four decimal places.

b. Add the per piece and per pound charges and round off the total postage to the nearest whole cent.

1.6.8 Discount for Heavy Automation Letters

Automation letters that weigh more than 3.3 ounces but not more than 3.5 ounces are charged postage equal to the automation piece/pound price for that piece and receive a discount equal to the corresponding automation flat-size piece price (3.3 ounces or less) minus the corresponding automation letter-size piece price (3.3 ounces or less). If a destination entry price is claimed, the discount is calculated using the corresponding prices.

1.6.9 Discount for Heavy ECR Letters

Pieces that otherwise qualify for the high density or saturation letter price and weigh more than 3.3 ounces but not more than 3.5 ounces pay postage equal to the piece/pound price and receive a discount equal to the flat-size piece price (3.3 ounces or less) minus the letter-size piece price (3.3 ounces or less). If a destination entry price is claimed, the discount is calculated using the corresponding prices.

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2.0 Content Standards for Standard Mail Letters

2.1 Definition and Weight

Standard Mail consists of mailable matter that is neither mailed or required to be mailed as First-Class Mail nor entered as Periodicals (unless permitted or required by standard) and that weighs less than 16 ounces.

2.2 Personal Information

Personal information may not be included in a Standard Mail mailpiece unless all of the following conditions are met:

a. The mailpiece contains explicit advertising for a product or service for sale or lease or an explicit solicitation for a donation.

b. All of the personal information is directly related to the advertising or solicitation.

c. The exclusive reason for inclusion of all of the personal information is to support the advertising or solicitation in the mailpiece.

2.3 Bills and Statements of Account

Mail containing bills or statements of account as defined in 233.2.2 may not be entered as Standard Mail except under the conditions described in 2.5.2.

2.4 Handwritten and Typewritten Matter

Mail containing handwritten or typewritten matter may not be entered as Standard Mail except under the conditions described in 2.6.

2.5 Attachments and Enclosures

2.5.1 Invoice

An invoice, whether it also serves as a bill, may be placed either inside a Standard Mail piece or in an envelope marked “Invoice Enclosed” and attached to the outside of the piece if the invoice relates solely to the matter with which it is mailed. The invoice may show this information:

a. Names and addresses of the sender and addressee.

b. Names and quantities of the articles enclosed, descriptions of each (e.g., price, tax, style, stock number, size, and quality, and, if defective, nature of defects).

c. Order or file number, date of order, date and manner of shipment, shipping weight, postage paid, and initials or name of packer or checker.

2.5.2 Incidental First-Class Mail Attachments and Enclosures

Incidental First-Class Mail matter may be enclosed in or attached to Standard Mail merchandise (including books but excluding merchandise samples) without payment of First-Class Mail postage. Incidental First-Class Mail matter may not be enclosed in or attached to matter mailed as Customized MarketMail under 705.1.0. An incidental First-Class Mail attachment or enclosure must be matter that, if mailed separately, would require First-Class Mail postage, is closely associated with but secondary to the host piece, and is prepared not to encumber postal processing. An incidental First-Class Mail attachment or enclosure may be a bill for the product or publication, a statement of account for past products or publications, or a personal message or greeting included with a product, publication, or parcel. Postage at the Standard Mail or Package Services price for the host piece is based on the combined weight of the host piece and the incidental First-Class Mail attachment or enclosure.

2.5.3 Nonincidental First-Class Mail Enclosures

Letters or other pieces of nonincidental First-Class Mail, subject to postage at First-Class Mail prices, may be enclosed with Standard Mail pieces (except matter mailed as Customized MarketMail under 705.1.0). Postage for the First-Class Mail enclosure must be placed on the outside of the piece. It may be affixed separately or added to the postage for the host piece. The endorsement “First-Class Mail Enclosed” must be placed on the piece, below the postage and above the address.

2.5.4 Nonincidental First-Class Mail Attachments

Letters or other pieces of nonincidental First-Class Mail may be placed in an envelope and securely attached to the address side of a Standard Mail piece (except matter mailed as Customized MarketMail under 705.1.0), or of the principal piece, as applicable. Combination envelopes or containers with separate parts for the two classes of mail may be used. The names and addresses of the sender and addressee must be placed on both the principal piece and the attachment. Alternatively, the sender’s name and address must be placed on one part and the addressee’s name and address on the other. If the piece is a combination container with inseparable parts or compartments, the names and addresses may appear on only one part. The applicable Standard Mail postage for the Standard Mail matter must be prepaid and placed in the upper right corner of the address space. Postage at the applicable First-Class Mail price must be paid for and affixed to the First-Class Mail attachment, unless other payment methods are permitted by standard.

2.5.5 Attachment of Other Standard Mail Matter

Standard Mail letters may bear one repositionable note per mailpiece under 705.22.0. A Standard Mail letter may bear a label, a sticker, or a release card eligible as Standard Mail matter, when affixed under 2.5.5 and 2.5.6. Standard Mail letters also may bear other attachments eligible as Standard Mail matter if these additional conditions are met:

a. The piece bearing the attachment is claimed as Customized MarketMail (CMM) under 705.1.0 or as Enhanced Carrier Route letters under 6.0, except as allowed for labels, stickers and release cards under 2.5.6.The face of the attachment may bear only the price markings and endorsements permitted for the price claimed for the host piece.

b. At the time of mailing, the piece shows only one complete delivery address. If the attachment is a reply card, the address for returning the piece is not visible.

c. CMM host pieces are any size permitted under 705.1.1.3. Enhanced Carrier Route letters are larger than 6 by 11 inches, except as allowed under 2.5.6.

d. The attachment is not larger than the host piece and does not extend beyond the host piece. An attachment affixed to a CMM piece may not be greater than 1/4 inch thick at its thickest point.

e. Each piece in the mailing bears the attachment, and the attachment is of identical size, weight, and positioning on the host piece. Different wording or designs may be used.

f. The attachment does not interfere with processing or delivery. Folded or multipage attachments must be secured to prevent opening during handling.

g. Letters, with attachments that have been approved in writing by the Pricing and Classification Service Center, are eligible for mailing under the conditions specified in the approval letter.

2.5.6 Letter-Size Pieces with Labels, Stickers, or Release Cards

Automation letters and Enhanced Carrier Route letters with an attached label, sticker, or release card eligible as Standard Mail matter must meet the standards in 201.3.13.

2.6 Written Additions

Markings that have the character of personal correspondence require, with certain exceptions, additional postage at the First-Class Mail prices. The following written additions and enclosures do not require additional First-Class Mail postage:

a. The sender’s and the addressee’s names, occupations, and addresses, preceded by “From” or “To,” and directions for handling.

b. Marks, numbers, names, or letters describing the contents.

c. Words or phrases such as “Do Not Open Until Christmas” and “Happy Birthday, Mother.”

d. Instructions and directions for the use of the item mailed.

e. A manuscript dedication or inscription not having the nature of personal correspondence.

f. Marks to call attention to words or passages in the text.

g. Corrections of typographical errors in printed matter.

h. Manuscripts accompanying related proof sheets and corrections of proof sheets including corrections of typographical and other errors, changes in the text, insertions of new text, marginal instructions to the printer, and corrective rewrites of parts.

i. Handstamped imprints, unless the added material is in itself personal or converts the original matter to a personal communication.

j. Matter mailable separately as Standard Mail printed on the wrapper, envelope, tag, or label.

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3.0 Basic Standards for Standard Mail Letters

3.1 Description of Service

3.1.1 Service Objectives

Standard Mail may receive deferred handling. Service objectives for delivery are 2 to 9 days; however, delivery time is not guaranteed.

3.1.2 Minimum Quantity

Standard Mail provides economical prices for mailings of 200 or more pieces or 50 or more pounds of mail.

3.2 Defining Characteristics

3.2.1 Mailpiece Weight

All Standard Mail pieces must weigh less than 16 ounces. The following weight limits also apply to pieces mailed at Standard Mail letter prices:

a. Pieces mailed at machinable letter prices may weigh up to 3.3 ounces. Letter-size pieces weighing more than 3.3 ounces are mailable at nonmachinable letter prices, unless they are barcoded and eligible to be mailed as automation letters. For saturation and high density letters over 3.5 ounces, see 3.2.1b.

b. Pieces mailed at automation letter prices may weigh up to 3.5 ounces. Saturation and high density letters weighing more than 3.5 ounces are mailable at applicable saturation or high density nonautomation letter prices.

3.2.2 Preparation Requirements

Standard Mail is subject to specific volume, marking, and preparation requirements.

3.2.3 Inspection of Contents

Standard Mail is not sealed against postal inspection.

3.2.4 Forwarding Service

The price of Standard Mail typically does not include forwarding service. Forwarding service is available under 507.1.5.

3.2.5 Return Service

The price of Standard Mail does not include return service. Return service is available under 507.1.5 for an additional fee.

3.2.6 Extra Services

[3-3-14] Extra services are available with Standard Mail as provided in 503.1.0.

3.2.7 Periodicals

Authorized Periodicals may not be entered as Standard Mail unless permitted by standard.

3.2.8 Identical Pieces

The contents of printed matter in a Standard Mail mailing must be identical to a piece sent to at least one other addressee. Standard Mail may include the addressee's name and address but may not transmit personal information except as permitted under 2.2.

3.3 Additional Basic Standards for Standard Mail

Each Standard Mail mailing is subject to these general standards:

a. All pieces in a mailing must be of the same processing category.

b. Each mailing must contain at least 200 pieces or 50 pounds of pieces. See 3.6, for volume requirement eligibility unique to Presorted Standard price mailings. Other volume standards also can apply, based on the price claimed.

c. All pieces in an automation mailing must be eligible for an automation price.

d. All pieces in a mailing must be sorted together and marked under the standards for the price claimed.

e. Each piece must bear the addressee's name and delivery address, including the correct ZIP Code or ZIP+4 code (see 602.6.1), unless an alternative addressing format is used subject to 602.3.0. Detached address labels may be used subject to 602.4.0.

f. Postage must be paid under 244.1.0 through 244.3.0 with precanceled stamps, meter stamps, or permit imprint.

g. A postage statement, completed and signed by the mailer, using the correct USPS form or an approved facsimile, must be submitted with each mailing. In addition, mailings must be documented under 244.4.2, and the standards for the price claimed.

h. Each piece must meet the standards for any other price or discount claimed.

i. Any Intelligent Mail barcode on a mailpiece must be correct for the delivery address and meet the standards in 202.5.0, 708.3.0 and 708.4.0.

j. Mailings must be deposited at a business mail entry unit of the Post Office where the postage permit or license is held and the annual mailing fee paid, unless deposit elsewhere is permitted by standard.

3.4 Presort Mailing Fees

An annual mailing fee must be paid once each 12-month period at each Post Office of mailing. Payment of this fee is waived for mailers who present only full-service automation mailings (under 705.23.0) containing 90% or more pieces qualifying for full-service prices. A mailer paying this fee may enter clients’ mail as well as the mailer’s own. The mailer whose permit imprint appears on pieces in a mailing paid with a permit imprint must show that permit number on the postage statement and must pay the annual mailing fee for that permit; this fee is in addition to the one-time fee for an application to use permit imprints. The fee may be paid in advance only for the next 12 months and only during the last 60 days of the current service period. The fee charged is that which is in effect on the date of payment.

3.5 Merging Similar Standard Mailings

Mailings are subject to the general definitions and conditions in 245.1.0. Generally, mailers may merge similar Standard Mail matter into a single mailing. Differences in text, address labels, and address lists or list key numbers do not prohibit the mailer from merging and sorting pieces together. Pieces with different methods of postage payment may be combined in the same mailing only if authorized by Business Mailer Support (BMS). Pieces of nonidentical weight, if merged in the same mailing, must bear the correct postage when mailed, unless otherwise authorized by BMS.

3.6 Residual Volume Requirement

Pieces in an Enhanced Carrier Route mailing that has separately met a 200-piece or 50-pound minimum quantity requirement may be counted toward the minimum quantity requirement for a Presorted mailing, provided that the Enhanced Carrier Route mailing and the Presorted mailing are part of the same mailing job. Likewise, pieces in an automation mailing that has separately met a 200-piece or 50-pound minimum quantity requirement may be counted toward the minimum quantity requirement for a Presorted mailing, provided that the automation mailing and the Presorted mailing are part of the same mailing job. Pieces mailed at Presorted Standard Mail prices must not be counted toward the minimum volume requirements for an Enhanced Carrier Route or an automation mailing.

3.7 Residual Mail Subject to First-Class Mail or Priority Mail Prices

Pieces prepared as Standard Mail (i.e., that bear Standard Mail markings, ACS codes, etc.) that do not qualify for Enhanced Carrier Route, automation, or Presorted Standard Mail prices are subject to the single-piece First-Class Mail or Priority Mail prices as applicable for the weight of the mailpiece. Metered pieces weighing over 13 ounces but less than 16 ounces that do not qualify for Standard Mail prices and any pieces that do not qualify for Standard Mail prices for which First-Class Mail or Priority Mail service is desired must be re-enveloped or otherwise prepared so that they do not bear Standard Mail markings, endorsements, and ACS codes and must bear the proper First-Class Mail or Priority Mail markings and ACS codes. Mailers who have pieces (other than metered pieces weighing over 13 ounces but less than 16 ounces) that do not qualify for Standard Mail prices but that are prepared as Standard Mail and who do not desire to receive First-Class Mail or Priority Mail service for those pieces may enter their mailpieces “as is” (i.e., bearing the Standard Mail markings and endorsements), provided the requirements in 244.5.1, and 244.5.2, are met.

3.8 ZIP Code Accuracy

The ZIP Code accuracy standard is a means of ensuring that the 5-digit ZIP Code in the delivery address correctly matches the delivery address information. For the purposes of this standard, address means a specific address associated with a specific 5-digit ZIP Code. Each address in a mailing at Standard Mail letter prices must meet the ZIP Code accuracy requirements in 602.6.0.

3.9 Move Update Standard

3.9.1 Basic Standards

The Move Update standard requires the periodic matching of a mailer's address records with customer-filed change-of-address orders maintained by the USPS. For this standard, address is a specific address associated with a specific occupant name. Each address in a mailing at Standard Mail letter prices must meet the requirements in 602.5.0.

3.9.2 Basis for Move Update Assessment Charges

Mailings are subject to a Move Update assessment charge if more than 30 percent of addresses with a change-of-address (COA) are not updated, based on the error rate found in USPS sampling at acceptance during Performance-Based Verification. Specifically, mailings for which the sample contains greater than 30 percent failed COAs out of the total COAs in the sample are subject to additional postage charges as follows:

a. The percentage of the mailing paying the charge is based on the percentage of failed pieces above 30 percent.

b. Each of the assessed pieces is subject to the $0.07 per piece charge.

c. As an example, if 40% of COAs in the sample are not updated, then the charge is applied to 10% (=40% - 30%) of the total mailing.

d. Mailings for which the sample has five or fewer pieces that were not updated for a COA are not subject to the assessment, regardless of the failure percentage.

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4.0 Price Eligibility for Standard Mail

4.1 General Information

All Standard Mail prices are presorted prices (including all nonprofit prices). These prices apply to mailings meeting the basic standards in 2.0 through 4.0 and the corresponding standards for Presorted prices under 3.0 and 5.0, Enhanced Carrier Route prices under 6.0, automation prices under 7.0, or Customized MarketMail prices under 705.1.0. Except for Customized MarketMail pieces, destination entry discount prices are available under 246.2.0 through 246.5.0. Nonprofit prices may be used only by organizations authorized by the USPS. Not all processing categories qualify for every price. Pieces are subject to either a single minimum per piece price or a combined piece/pound price, depending on the weight of the individual pieces in the mailing.

4.2 Minimum Per Piece Prices

The minimum per piece prices (the minimum postage that must be paid for each piece) apply as follows:

a. Basic Requirement. Pieces mailed at Regular, Enhanced Carrier Route, Nonprofit, and Nonprofit Enhanced Carrier Route prices are subject to minimum per piece prices when they weigh no more than 3.3 ounces (0.2063 pound).

b. In applying the minimum per piece prices, a mailpiece is categorized as either a letter or a nonletter, based on whether the piece meets the letter-size standard in 201.1.1.1, without regard to placement of the address on the piece, except under these conditions:

1. If the piece meets both the definition of a letter in 201.1.1.1 and the definition of an automation flat in 301.3.0, the piece may be prepared and entered at an automation flat price.

2. If the piece is prepared for automation letter prices, address placement is used to determine the length when applying the size standards and aspect ratio requirements to qualify for automation letter prices under 201.3.0. For this purpose, the length is considered to be the dimension parallel to the address.

3. Pieces mailed as Customized MarketMail under 705.1.0 must pay the prices in 705.1.2 and must not exceed 3.3 ounces.

c. Individual Prices. There are separate minimum per piece prices for each subclass (Regular, Enhanced Carrier Route, Nonprofit, and Nonprofit Enhanced Carrier Route) and within each subclass for the type of mailing and the level of presort within each mailing.

4.3 Piece/Pound Prices

Pieces that exceed 3.3 ounces (0.2063 pound) are subject to a two-part piece/pound price that includes a fixed charge per piece and a variable pound charge based on weight. Pieces exceeding 3.3 ounces may not be mailed as Customized MarketMail. There are separate per piece prices for each subclass (Regular, Enhanced Carrier Route, Nonprofit, and Nonprofit Enhanced Carrier Route) and within each subclass for the type of mailing and the level of presort within each mailing under 3.0 through 7.0. There are separate per pound prices for each subclass (Regular, Enhanced Carrier Route, Nonprofit, and Nonprofit Enhanced Carrier Route) under 3.0 through 7.0. Discounted per pound prices also may be claimed for destination entry mailings (destination network distribution center (DNDC) and destination sectional center facility (DSCF)) under 246.

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5.0 Additional Eligibility Standards for Nonautomation Standard Mail Letters

5.1 Basic Standards

All pieces in a Regular Standard Mail or Nonprofit Standard Mail nonautomation price mailing must:

a. Meet the basic standards for Standard Mail in 2.0 through 4.0.

b. Except as provided in 3.6, be part of a single mailing of at least 200 addressed pieces or 50 pounds of pieces qualifying for nonautomation Standard Mail. Regular and Nonprofit mailings must meet separate minimum volumes.

c. Bear a delivery address that includes the correct ZIP Code or ZIP+4 code and that meets these address quality standards:

1. The ZIP Code accuracy standard in 3.8.

2. If an alternative addressing format is used, the additional standards in 602.3.0.

d. Be marked, sorted, and documented as specified in 245, or 705.8.0.

5.2 Weight Standards for Machinable Pieces

Maximum weight limit for machinable nonautomation Standard mail is 3.3 ounces (0.2063 pound).

5.3 Price Application

Nonautomation prices for Regular and Nonprofit Standard Mail apply to letters that meet the eligibility standards in 2.0, and the preparation standards in 245, or 705.8.0.

5.4 Machinable Price Application

Machinable letters are subject only to AADC and mixed AADC prices.

5.4.1 AADC Price

The AADC price applies to qualifying letter-size machinable pieces (see 201.1.0) placed in origin/entry 3-digit trays, to quantities of 150 or more pieces prepared in AADC trays for a single AADC, and to pieces placed in mixed AADC trays in lieu of overflow AADC trays.

5.4.2 Mixed AADC Price

The mixed AADC price applies to qualifying letter-size machinable pieces that the mailer prepares in mixed AADC trays, except for pieces placed in mixed AADC trays in lieu of overflow AADC trays (see 245.5.3.2).

5.5 Nonmachinable Price Application

Nonmachinable prices in 1.0 apply only to Standard Mail letter-size pieces (including card-size pieces) that meet the criteria in 201.2.1 for nonmachinable letters. Nonmachinable saturation or high density letter-size pieces are subject to the applicable saturation or high density nonautomation letter prices.

5.5.1 5-Digit Price

The 5-digit price applies to letter-size pieces subject to nonmachinable prices in quantities of 150 or more pieces for a 5-digit ZIP Code prepared in 5-digit trays (and overflow pieces in 3-digit or ADC trays) under 245.5.0.

5.5.2 3-Digit Price

The 3-digit price applies to letter-size pieces subject to nonmachinable prices in quantities of 150 or more pieces for a 3-digit ZIP Code prepared in 3-digit trays (and overflow pieces in ADC or MADC trays) under 245.5.0.

5.5.3 ADC Price

The ADC price applies to letter-size pieces subject to nonmachinable prices in 3-digit origin/entry trays and to pieces in quantities of 150 or more for an ADC prepared in ADC trays (and overflow pieces in MADC trays) under 245.5.0.

5.5.4 Mixed ADC Price

The mixed ADC price applies to letter-size pieces that are subject to the nonmachinable prices and prepared in mixed ADC trays.

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6.0 Additional Eligibility Standards for Enhanced Carrier Route Standard Mail Letters

6.1 General Enhanced Carrier Route Standards

6.1.1 Optional Preparation

Preparation to qualify for any Enhanced Carrier Route price is optional and need not be performed for all carrier routes in a 5-digit area. An Enhanced Carrier Route mailing may include pieces at basic, high density, high density plus, and saturation prices.

6.1.2 Basic Eligibility Standards

[1-26-14] All pieces in an Enhanced Carrier Route or Nonprofit Enhanced Carrier Route Standard Mail mailing must:

a. Meet the basic standards for Standard Mail in 2.0 through 4.0.

b. Be part of a single mailing of at least 200 pieces or 50 pounds of pieces of Enhanced Carrier Route Standard Mail. ECR and Nonprofit ECR mailings must meet separate minimum volumes.

c. Be sorted to carrier routes, marked, and documented under 245.6.0, or 705.8.0.

d. Bear a delivery address that includes the correct ZIP Code, ZIP+4 code, or numeric equivalent to the delivery point routing code and that meets these address quality standards:

1. The carrier route accuracy standard in 6.2.

2. The address matching and coding standards in 7.5, and 708.3.0.

3. If an alternative addressing format is used, the additional standards in 602.3.0.

e. Meet the applicable sequencing requirements in 6.3 through 6.5 and 245.6.8.

f. Meet the applicable documentation and postage payment standards in 244, and 1.6.

g. Meet the requirements for automation compatibility in 201.3.0 and bear an accurate Intelligent Mail barcode encoded with the correct delivery point routing code matching the delivery address and meeting the standards in 202.5.0 and 708.4.0 except as provided in 6.1.2h. Pieces prepared with a simplified address format are exempt from the automation-compatibility and barcode requirements. Letters entered under the full-service Intelligent Mail automation option also must meet the standards in 705.23.0.

h. All saturation and high density letters over 3.5 ounces, and saturation (other than pieces with a simplified address) and high density letter-size pieces not meeting the standards 6.1.2g must pay the applicable nonautomation saturation or high density prices. Basic carrier route letter prices are the same for barcoded automation-compatible pieces and nonautomation pieces.

6.2 Carrier Route Accuracy Standard

Addresses used on pieces claiming any Enhanced Carrier Route prices must meet the carrier route accuracy standard in 602.7.0.

6.3 Basic Price Enhanced Carrier Route Standards

6.3.1 Sequencing

All pieces mailed at basic prices must be prepared in walk sequence or in line-of-travel (LOT) sequence according to LOT schemes prescribed by the USPS (see 245.6.8 through 245.6.9).

6.3.2 Basic Price Eligibility

Basic prices apply to each piece sorted under 245.6.0 or 705.8.0 in a full carrier route tray, in a carrier route bundle of 10 or more pieces, or in groups of 10 or more pieces placed in a 5-digit carrier routes or a 3-digit carrier routes tray.

6.4 High Density and High Density Plus (Enhanced Carrier Route) Standards

6.4.1 Additional Eligibility Standards for High Density and High Density Plus Prices

[1-26-14] In addition to the general eligibility standards in 6.1, high density and high density plus letter-size mailpieces must be in a full carrier route tray or in a carrier route bundle of 10 or more pieces placed in a 5-digit carrier routes or 3-digit carrier routes tray. High density and high density plus prices for barcoded letters apply to each piece that is automation-compatible according to 201.3.0, and has an accurate delivery point Intelligent Mail barcode (IMb) encoded with the correct delivery point routing code matching the delivery address and meeting the standards in 202.5.0 and 708.4.0. Pieces that are not automation-compatible or not barcoded with an IMb under 202.5.0 are mailable only at the applicable high density or high density plus nonautomation letter prices.

6.4.2 High Density and High Density Plus Prices for Letters

All pieces mailed at high density or high density plus prices must be prepared in walk sequence according to schemes prescribed by the USPS (see 245.6.8 through 245.6.9). Multiple pieces per delivery address can count toward both density standards. Specific density requirements are as follows:

a. Pieces mailed at high density prices must be sorted together in sequence in quantities of at least 125 pieces for each carrier route. .

b. Pieces mailed at high density plus prices must be sorted together in sequence in quantities of at least 300 pieces for each carrier route.

6.4.3 High Density and High Density Plus Discount for Heavy Letters

High density and high density plus pieces that are automation-compatible under 201.3.0, accurately barcoded with a delivery point IMb, and weigh more than 3.3 ounces but not more than 3.5 ounces, require postage equal to the piece/pound price and receive a discount equal to the high density flat-size piece price (3.3 ounces or less) minus the high density letter piece price (3.3 ounces or less). The discount is calculated using nondestination entry prices only, regardless of entry level. This discount does not apply to pieces requiring payment of nonautomation high density or high density plus letter prices.

6.5 Saturation ECR Standards

6.5.1 Additional Eligibility Standards for Saturation Prices

[1-26-14] In addition to the eligibility standards in 6.1, saturation letter-size mailpieces must be in a full carrier route tray or in a carrier route bundle of 10 or more pieces placed in a 5-digit (or 3-digit) carrier routes tray. Except for pieces with a simplified address, pieces that are not automation-compatible or not barcoded with an Intelligent Mail barcode under 202.5.0 are mailable only at nonautomation saturation letter prices.

6.5.2 Saturation Prices for Letters

All pieces mailed at saturation prices must:

a. Be prepared in walk sequence according to schemes prescribed by the USPS (see 245.6.8 through 245.6.9).

b. Meet the density requirement of at least 90% or more of the active residential addresses or 75% or more of the total number of active possible delivery addresses on each carrier route receiving this mail. Pieces bearing a simplified address must meet the coverage standards in 602.3.0. Multiple pieces per delivery address do not count toward this density standard.

6.5.3 Saturation Discount for Heavy Letters

Saturation pieces that are automation-compatible under 201.3.0, are accurately barcoded with a delivery point barcode, and weigh more than 3.3 ounces but not more than 3.5 ounces pay postage equal to the piece/pound price and receive a discount equal to the saturation flat-size piece price (3.3 ounces or less) minus the saturation letter piece price (3.3 ounces or less). The discount is calculated using nondestination entry prices only, regardless of entry level. This discount also applies to saturation pieces with simplified addresses. This discount does not apply to pieces paying nonautomation saturation letter prices.

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7.0 Eligibility Standards for Automation Standard Mail

7.1 Basic Eligibility Standards for Automation Standard Mail

[1-26-14] All pieces in a Regular Standard Mail or Nonprofit Standard Mail automation mailing must:

a. Meet the basic standards for Standard Mail in 2.0 through 4.0.

b. Be part of a single mailing of at least 200 pieces or 50 pounds of pieces of automation price Standard Mail (Regular and Nonprofit mailings must meet separate minimum volumes).

c. Be in the same processing category and meet the physical standards in 201.3.0.

d. Bear a delivery address that includes the correct ZIP Code, ZIP+4 code, or numeric equivalent to the delivery point routing code and that meets these address quality standards:

1. The address matching and coding standards in 7.5, and 708.3.0.

2. If an alternative addressing format is used, the additional standards in 602.3.0.

e. Bear an accurate Intelligent Mail barcode encoded with the correct delivery point routing code, matching the delivery address and meeting the standards in 202.5.0 and 708.4.0.

f. Be marked and sorted according to 245.7.0.

g. Meet the applicable documentation and postage payment standards in 1.6, and 244.1.0 through 244.3.0.

7.2 Additional Eligibility Standards for Full-Service Automation Standard Mail Letters

All pieces entered under the full-service Intelligent Mail automation option must:

a. Bear a unique Intelligent Mail barcode.

b. Be part of a mailing that meets the standards in 705.23.0.

c. Be scheduled for an appointment through the Facility Access and Shipment Tracking (FAST) system when deposited as a DNDC or DSCF drop-shipment.

7.3 Maximum Weight for Automation Letters

Maximum weight limit for automation price mail is 3.5 ounces (0.2188 pound). See 201.3.6, for pieces heavier than 3 ounces.

7.4 Price Application for Automation Letters

Automation prices apply to each piece that is sorted under 245.7.0, into the corresponding qualifying groups:

a. Groups of 150 or more pieces in 5-digit/scheme trays qualify for the 5-digit price. Preparation to qualify for that price is optional. Pieces placed in full 3-digit/scheme trays under 245.7.5 in lieu of 5-digit/scheme overflow trays are eligible for 5-digit prices (see 245.7.5).

b. Groups of 150 or more pieces in 3-digit/scheme trays qualify for the 3-digit price. Pieces placed in full AADC trays under 245.7.5 in lieu of 3-digit/scheme overflow trays are eligible for 3-digit prices (see 245.7.5).

c. Groups of fewer than 150 pieces in origin/entry 3-digit/scheme trays and groups of 150 or more pieces in AADC trays qualify for the AADC price. Pieces placed in mixed AADC trays under 245.7.5 in lieu of AADC overflow trays also are eligible for AADC prices (see 245.7.5).

d. Pieces in mixed AADC trays qualify for the mixed AADC price, except for pieces prepared under 7.4c..

7.5 Address Standards for Barcoded Pieces

7.5.1 Basic Address Standards for Barcodes

To qualify for automation prices, addresses must be sufficiently complete to enable matching to the current USPS ZIP+4 Product when used with current CASS-certified address matching software. Any barcode as defined in 202.5.0 and 708.4.0 that appears on a mailpiece claimed at an automation price must be the correct barcode for the corresponding delivery address on the piece.

7.5.2 Numeric ZIP+4

A numeric ZIP+4 code must consist of five digits, a hyphen, and four digits.

7.5.3 Numeric Delivery Point Routing Code

The numeric equivalent to the delivery point routing code is formed by adding two digits directly after the ZIP+4 code.

7.5.4 Address Elements

Addresses must include the correct street number, predirectional, street name, suffix, and postdirectional that are input to obtain a match with the current USPS ZIP+4 Product.

7.5.5 Firm Name

An address must include a firm name when necessary to obtain a match with the finest level of ZIP+4 code in the USPS ZIP+4 Product. If an address contains a firm name assigned a unique ZIP+4 code in the USPS ZIP+4 Product, the unique ZIP+4 code must be used. If the firm name is not one assigned a unique ZIP+4 code in the USPS ZIP+4 Product and the apartment/suite number is included in the address, the ZIP+4 code for the range in which the apartment/suite number appears must be used in that address. If the firm name does not correspond to a firm name that has a unique ZIP+4 code assigned in the USPS ZIP+4 Product and the apartment/suite number is not included in the address, the ZIP+4 code for the building must be used.

7.5.6 Secondary Designator

If a secondary address designator (e.g., an apartment number) is shown in the address, the mailpiece must show the appropriate ZIP+4 code representing the range for that secondary address as contained in the current USPS ZIP+4 Product. If a secondary address designator is required to obtain an exact match with the finest level of ZIP+4 code in the USPS ZIP+4 Product but the information is not available, the alternative ZIP+4 code or ZIP+4 or delivery point barcode for the building must be used.

7.5.7 Rural and Highway Contract Routes

If a rural route or highway contract route box number is included in the address, the mailpiece must show the appropriate ZIP+4 code representing the range for that box number as contained in the current USPS ZIP+4 Product. If a rural route or highway contract route box number is required to obtain a match with the finest level of ZIP+4 code but is not available, the alternative ZIP+4 code or ZIP+4 or delivery point barcode for the rural route or highway contract route must be used. If used, the rural route or highway contract route box number must be placed on the line immediately above the city/state/ZIP Code line.

7.5.8 Post Office Box

A Post Office box address must contain a Post Office box number that can be exactly matched with the USPS ZIP+4 Product in effect.

7.6 Discount for Heavy Automation Letters

Automation letters that weigh more than 3.3 ounces but not more than 3.5 ounces pay postage equal to the automation piece/pound price and receive a discount equal to the automation nonletter piece price (3.3 ounces or less) minus the automation letter piece price (3.3 ounces or less). If claiming a destination entry price, the discount is calculated using the corresponding prices.