|USPS Home | Postal Explorer Home|
Quick Service Guide 604d
Basic Standards for All Mailing Services
May 31, 2015
Mailers may be authorized to mail items without affixing postage when payment is made at the time of mailing from a permit imprint advance deposit account. Each mailpiece sent under this method must bear a permit imprint indicia showing that postage is paid. This payment method may be used for postage and extra services fees for Priority Mail Express (eVS only), Priority Mail, First-Class Mail, Standard Mail, and Package Services. This method is not available for Periodicals, Standard Post, or for Priority Mail Express, not mailed using the electronic verification system (eVS) program, and must not be used to pay postage on any mailpiece that is designed for reply purposes (except for permit reply mail under 505.2.0). Permit imprint mailings must contain at least 200 pieces or 50 pounds (604.5.1.2) except nonpresorted Bound Printed Matter, or as allowed in 604.5.1.2, but higher volumes may be required depending on price claimed. These mailings must be presented for weighing unless otherwise authorized by Business Mailer Support (608.8.1).
A mailer must complete PS Form 3615, Mailing Permit Application and Customer Profile, and pay a one-time application fee at the Post Office where mailings are made. If no permit imprint mailings are made and no annual fee payments are made during a 2-year period, the permit is revoked. A separate annual mailing fee may also be due, depending on the class of mail to be prepared.
Indicia Preparation (604.5.3)
Producing permit imprints: embossed or unembossed permit imprint indicia may be made by printing press, hand stamp, lithography, mimeograph, address plate, or similar device. They must not be typewritten or hand-drawn.
Formats: permit imprints for ordinary mail and official mail must be prepared in one of the formats described in 604.5.3.11. A company permit imprint is one in which the exact name of the company or individual holding the permit is shown in the indicia in place of the city, state, and permit number, subject to 604.5.3.9.
Indicia Content (604.5.3.6)
A permit imprint indicia on Priority Mail Express, First-Class Mail, or Priority Mail must show “Priority Mail Express” or "First-Class Mail" or "Priority Mail" (or "Priority"), as applicable; "U.S. Postage Paid"; city and state; and permit number. If the Electronic Verification System (eVS) is used under 705.2.9, the marking "eVS" (or the alternative "e-VS" or "E-VS") must appear directly below the permit number. The “Priority Mail Express” and "Priority Mail" (or "Priority") marking may be omitted when using USPS-provided Priority Mail Express and Priority Mail envelopes and containers. The indicia may show the mailing date, amount of postage paid, or the number of ounces for which postage is paid. The ZIP Code of the permit holder may be shown directly after the state name or in a separate inscription reading "ZIP Code 00000," when that ZIP Code does not create uncertainty about the permit holder's correct address or permit number. Instead of printing the city and state of mailing in the indicia, the mailer may print "Mailed From ZIP Code," followed by the 5-digit ZIP Code assigned to the postmaster of the mailing office. The indicia may also include the required price markings.
Standard Mail, Bound Printed Matter, Media Mail, and Library Mail permit imprints must contain the same information required for First-Class Mail permit imprints, except that the date and words “First-Class Mail” or “Priority” or “Priority Mail” must be substituted with the applicable class or subclass name. The permit imprint may include the amount of postage paid, the weight of the piece, and price markings as required (604.5.3.7).
All pieces in a permit imprint mailing must be of identical weight unless otherwise authorized by Business Mailer Support (608.8.1). Other markings and endorsements may be required by the standards for the price claimed or service requested.
Mailings must be deposited and accepted at the Post Office that issued the permit, at a time and place designated by the postmaster, except as otherwise provided for plant-verified drop shipments.
Mail must not be deposited in street collection boxes. Postage statements must be submitted as specified by the standards for the price claimed or service requested.
These are only examples; not all possible variations are shown. See 604.5.3.12 for other examples.
When not in indicia, mail class and/or price must be marked on mailpiece (see individual standards for each subclass of mail).