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Mail & Postal Matters
US Postal Information Unordered Merchandise
Getting Off Mailing Lists Private Mail Carriers
Scams, Cons & Sweepstakes


Related Topics
Government & Gov Assistance  
Privacy & ID Theft
Scams & Cons












US Postal Information

General Info. Forms
Zip Codes Relocating (Change Of Address, Moving Tips, etc.)
Rates Missing Mail



Consumer Guide To Postal Services
Their Table Of Contents has all you need.

Finding The Post Office Nearest You

Postal Holidays (No Service)

Sending Mail Abroad

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Zip Codes

Look Up A US Zip Code By Entering The Address

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Domestic Rate Calculator
Specify the weight and size of what your sending along with source, destination and ZIP code and any special services you want.  The site will tell you how much the item will cost along with how many days it should take for it to arrive.

Postal Rates & Fees, International

Choosing The Right Class Of Mail
Choose from Express Mail, Priority Mail, First-Class Mail 
Periodicals, Standard Mail (A), and Standard Mail (B).

See General


Postal Forms

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Tracing Missing Mail

Reverse Address Lookup/Finding Out Who To Contact When You Sent The Letter To The Wrong Address (Consumer-SOS)

Using The Post Office To Track Your Letter (Good Luck!!!)

  1. Call The  U.S. Postal Service Main Branch  
    Mail must be missing for at least 15 days before it is traced.  

  2. Give them the zip code of the place where you mailed the  letter so they know which post office to contact.

  3. Provide the date you mailed letter, its destination and the value of its contents (i.e. $500 check).

  4. If such was a deposit, call your bank and follow line 3.

  5. Then call the person or agency that issued the check to see if the check was cashed.  If not, place a stop payment on the check immediately.

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Reverse Address Lookup/Finding Out Who To Contact When You Sent The Letter To The Wrong Address

Reverse Lookups-Find The Name, Address Or Phone # When You Have Only Limited Information (Consumer-SOS)
Strange # on your phone bill? Find out who it belongs to.
Sent a letter to the wrong address? Find out who got it and call them! Also, good for sending Surprise birthday gifts- You never need to ask them for their address.

If you are unsuccessful with the link above, try the steps below.

1. Call information in the area code where the address is. For example, if  your letter was sent to "Colorado Springs, Colorado" dial 1719-555-1212.  If your letter went to New York, New York dial 1212-555-1212.

2. Explain to information that you need a name and phone number so you can contact the people at this address and have the package returned to you.

3. If they can't find this address, ask them for the phone number of the local post office closest to this address.

4. Ask the local post office if they can tell you the name of the person or business that resides there.  Find out if the address is a valid one.  If it is not, it may be that the shipper is liable and should have had the item returned to you. 

4A. If you have a friend nearby, have him go to that address and investigate the matter. Or try calling calling the local City Zoning, Property or Tax Commission. These guys usually have a plat or map of all the buildings in the area and who owns them. 

4B. Use The Cole's Directory. Through a Cole's Directory you can use the street address and a "reverse directory" to look up the phone number. The Cole's Directory is probably available free at your local library.

 5. Once you have a name, use the  Internet White Pages or other Telephone Directories to find the phone number.  Or find the phone number by dialing information in that area.

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Postal Office Consumer Affairs Locator
Got A complaint? Punch in your city and state for the agency nearest you.

United States Postal Inspector
To report any outfits that misrepresent themselves by or through the mail. i.e. insurance scams, lottery fraud, fraudulent promises to repair your credit for a fee, or any  dubious offers, advertisements or requests from telemarketers, charities, health clubs or web sites where you either receive literature from them or they ask you to send things via U.S. mail.

See Also Scams & Cons & Sweepstakes

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Getting Off Mailing Lists

Ever wonder how these junk mail companies got your name and number?  Most of this information is obtained from lists which were bought from other companies.  Selling names is big business and done all the time.  So whenever you apply for a credit card or fill out a questionnaire or contest entry, don't be surprised if your name and other information is sold to the highest bidder. 

Getting Off Mailing Lists (The Direct Marketing Association)
Once you requests is processed, your name will remain on their "do not mail list" for five years.

The Federal Trade Commission
The FTC web site tells you how to get off credit bureau and direct marketing mailing lists, as well as how to stop your state department of motor vehicles from selling details about you.  For more privacy advice, go to the Privacy Rights Clearinghouse 

The Better Business Bureau
To find information about junk mail and getting off mailing lists, got to their search box and type "junk mail"

See Also Privacy And Identity Theft

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Scams, Cons & Sweepstakes

Protect Yourself From Mail Scams

Where To Go For Help

See Unordered Merchandise

See Consumer-SOS-Scams & Cons

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Unordered Merchandise
Warning!!! To prevent problems, you should be especially cautious when participating in sweepstakes or contests, or ordering goods advertised as "free" or "trial." READ THE FINE PRINT TO MAKE SURE YOU ARE NOT AGREEING TO MAKE FUTURE PURCHASES AT REGULAR PRICE, OR TO NOTIFY THE SENDER IN ADVANCE NOT TO SEND FUTURE SHIPMENTS.

In such cases, items received would not be considered unordered merchandise.

Receipt Of Unsolicited Merchandise (Your Right to Keep Such When Sent By Mail)

The Mail & Telephone Order Merchandise Rule (Google Updates)

The Mail & Telephone Order Rule (Rules Corps Must Follow) 

Unordered Merchandise (FTC)

See Scams, Cons & Sweepstakes

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Private Mail Carriers

Locating Your Parcel


PackTrack consolidates your search for missing packages. Just plug in the tracking number of your package, and it will find it in UPS, Fed Ex, DHL and more. If your service is not listed, use their drop box to select from 39 other mail carriers.

Reverse Address Lookup/Finding Out Who To Contact When You Sent The Letter To The Wrong Address (Consumer-SOS)

The Lowest Rates (Private Mail Carriers)


If you're not locked into an account with FedEx, UPS or one of the other package delivery companies, check here to find the best rates.  Enter the weight, origin, and destination and you'll get a comparison of costs and delivery times.

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Finding Mail Box Etc. Type Places

Mailbox And Packaging Database (Google Maps)
Put in the word "mail" and your 5 digit Zip Code for the stores nearest you.
Example: mail 30328

These stores may offer services such as copying, faxing, mailbox rental, packaging and shipping through various shippers, mail forwarding, voice mail, and many, many more services.

Related Topics
Scams & Cons

Government & Gov Assistance
Privacy & ID Theft

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What To Do Before Moving
Includes notifying people you never thought of.

Change Of Address Forms/Notifying Others Of Your Move

Moving Checklist Of Who To Contact (Consumer-SOS)

Changing Your Address-Free Based One Stop Service For Non-Businesses
They will notify all your selected institutions of your request to change your address, and if necessary, ensure that you receive any follow-up information requested by the institution.

Getting The Post Office To Hold Your Mail 

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Moving Checklist
Before you move, monitor your incoming mail to get a good idea of who you'll need to notify.  This will help you decide who you do and do not want to give your new address to.  For more help see the sample checklist below. When notifying 3rd parties, write down the name and number of the person you spoke to as well as the date you told them.

Student Loans
Graduate Student Loans
Direct Student Loans

Phone (local & Long Distance), DSL/Cable

Credit Cards

Capital One

Post Office
IRS (For Tax Refund and Tax Returns)
State Revenue Dept
Supervisor of Elections (Voting)
Motor Vehicles Dept
Other Government Agencies

World Vision
US News
Wall Street Journal

Firms, Organizations &Professional Groups
Your Workplace 
Your Bank/Other Lenders
Landlord (Former)
State Bar/Medical Board
Your Gym
Internet Service Provider
Web hosting company
Car Insurance 
You or Your Kids School

HMO/Insurance Co.

Friends/ Family/Business
All in Internet Address Book
Those In Reg. Address Book
Those not in either

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Help Numbers For Mail Fraud & Regular Fraud  

 Be suspicious of agencies with only a post office box or that have calls picked up by answering machine or answering service.  When in doubt, call the agencies listed below. 

US Postal Inspection Service

Find Your Secretary Of State (All 50 States & DC)
Many states require charities to register here. Find where the charity is located and then call that secretary of state to see if they're legitimate.

Find Your State's Attorney General
The Office of Attorney General will often enforce laws against unfair or deceptive business practices in your state.

Find Your Local Federal Trade Commission 
Regulates misleading or fraudulent business activities ranging from false advertising to fraud on the Internet.  

Find Your Local Better Business Bureau (DC & All 50 States)
Info source for old & new scams.  Use the BBB to check up on local companies and charities.

Verifying If A Charity Is Legitimate (Consumer-SOS)
Scroll down this section for help numbers.

National Fraud Information Center (800) 876-7060
Logs complaints about telephone and Internet fraud and then relays them to the appropriate state and federal law   enforcement agencies.

Toll-Free Directory 1-800-555-1212
Use this free directory service to see if your help agency has a toll-free number.

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Mail Matters