Customer Support Ruling

Customer Support Ruling


UPDATED July 2017

PS-319 (233.2.3)

In this Customer Support Ruling a determination will be made as to whether a “check” is considered “personal information” and mailable only at First-Class Mail, Priority Mail, or Priority Mail Express prices.

This ruling concerns the classification of  a printed mailpiece with a “convenience” check enclosed styled “To the order of John M. Doe.”   The “amount” and “date” spaces on the check were left blank.

Domestic Mail Manual (DMM) 233.2.3*, requires that matter containing personal information must be mailed as First-Class Mail, Priority Mail, or Priority Mail Express.  Personal information is any information specific to the addressee.

A check which is made payable only to the addressee or a specific individual(s) is considered “personal information” and is generally mailable only at the First-Class prices of postage, unless all of the conditions for “personal information” in USPS Marketing Mail are met under DMM 243.2,2.  Examples include “Pay to the order of John Doe,” or “Pay to Jane Doe or order.” As explained in PS-26, a printed “bearer check,” styled, for example, "Pay to John Doe or Bearer" would be acceptable at the USPS Marketing Mail prices.

Since the mailpiece includes a check made payable “To the order of John M. Doe” it is First-Class Mail despite the “amount” or other spaces such as “date” being left blank for completion.  Similar checks styled payable “To the order of” with the payee line left blank are not required to be mailed as First-Class Mail.

*See also DMM 133.3.2.

Sherry Suggs


Mailing Standards

Headquarters, US Postal Service

Washington, DC  20260-3436