USPS Certified Mail | Basics | Cost (Price) | Certificate of Mailing

0

What is Certified Mail?




Certified Mail® service is a numbered service that:

  • Provides the sender with a mailing receipt (as shown in these examples of Form 3800 / Receipt for Certified Mail)USPS certified mail
  • Also provides electronic verification that an article was delivered or that a delivery attempt was made. Delivery status can be retrieved in three ways:
    • Over the Internet at www.usps.com by entering the USPS Tracking® number shown on the mailing receipt
    • By telephone at 1-800-222-1811
    • By bulk electronic file transfer for mailers who provide an electronic manifest to the USPS
  • Maintains a record of delivery, which includes the recipient’s signature, that is kept at the Post Office™ of delivery two years from the date of mailing.
  • NOTE: The delivery record is not automatically mailed back to the sender with this service:
  • Certified Mail can be eligible for refunds.

 Certified Mail® service is also available combined with three other services: 

  • Certified Mail Restricted Delivery – Customers may direct delivery of Certified Mail only to the addressee (or addressee’s authorized agent)
  • Certified Mail Adult Signature Required – Customers may direct delivery of Certified Mail only to an adult (individual who is 21 years of age or older)
  • Certified Mail Adult Signature Restricted Delivery – Customers may limit delivery of Certified Mail only to a specific addressee or authorized agent who is 21 years of age or older
    • Available online and to commercial mailers only

How Much Does Certified Mail Cost?




  • Certified Mail®
    • Prove you sent it. See when it was delivered or that a delivery attempt was made, and get the signature of the person who accepts the mailing when combined with Return Receipt.
  • Certified Mail Cost : $3.45
  • Purchase at your Post Office.
  • Present for mailing to a Postal employee if a postmarked sender’s receipt is requested.
  • Combine with Return Receipt to get electronic or physical delivery record showing the recipient’s signatue.

What is a Firm Mailing Book?

  • PS Form 3877, Firm Mailing Book for Accountable Mail, is a multipage bound book that contains individual sheets with several spaces on each sheet to enter multiple article numbers for accountable mail such as Certified Mail, COD, Priority Mail Express, and Insured Mail pieces. The use of the book or electronic facsimiles eliminates the need to generate individual mailing receipts for each article.
  • Pricing for items listed in a Firm Mailing Book are per piece and can be found in Notice 123 under Certificate of Mailing under both Domestic Extra Services and Fees and International Extra Services and Fees.

Certificate of Mailing – The Basics

What is a Certificate of Mailing?

  • Certificate Of Mailing provides evidence that you sent an item when you say you did. This official record only shows the date your mail was accepted. It does not provide record of delivery, proof of mailing, or insure items against loss.
  • The Postal Service® does not keep copies of Certificate of Mailing receipts. It is therefore critical that you retain your receipt. No signature or receipt is obtained when Certificate of Mailing items are delivered to the recipient.
  • No insurance is provided against loss or damage.
  • May be used for domestic or international mail.
  • Can be paid for by affixing postage stamps, meter stamps, or permit imprints.

Does it cost anything?

Fees vary, depending on whether the Certificate of Mailing is purchased with an Individual Article or an Individual Article with Firm Mailing Book.  Fees are in addition to regular postage.  For detailed information on fees, go to https://www.usps.com/ship/insurance-extra-services.htm:  (for International prices, go to https://www.usps.com/international/insurance-extra-services.htm).  

What are the different Certificates of Mailing – what do they look like?

  • PS Form 3817 : You can view the Certificate of Mailing form online at: PS Form 3817 (PDF). This form is used for both domestic and international Certificate of Mailing when the shipment contains one or two items.  
  • PS Form 3665: You can view the Certificate of Mailing – Firm form online at: PS Form 3665 (PDF). As of November 6th, 2016, this form can be used for both domestic and international Certificate of Mailing when the shipment contains three or more items.
    • As of January 22, 2017, the updated January 2017 version is available online in both a .pdf version and in a (form-fill feature) LiveCycle version. See both version of PS Form 3665 here.
    • In addition to the existing Domestic products, the January 2017 revision of the form also indicates that it can be used for unregistered First-Class Mail International, unregistered First-Class Package International Service, Free Matter for the Blind, and Airmail M-Bags items.
    • Customers who currently use privately printed versions of the PS Form 3665 will need to update their form to align with the new January 2017 version. Information on USPS approval for privately printed or computer-generated forms is included on the PS Form 3665. The approval process for these forms can be found in DMM 503, section 5.1.7, Privately Printed Forms.
  • PS Form 3877 : You can view the Firm Mailing Book for Accountable Mail form online at: PS Form 3877 (PDF). As of January 22, 2017, the updated January 2017 version is available online in both a .pdf version and in a (form-fill feature) LiveCycle version. See both version of PS Form 3665 here.
    • Formerly, this form could be used for both domestic and international Certificate of Mailing when the shipment contains three or more items.
    • Until February 28, 2018, current USPS-approved privately printed PS Form 3877 facsimiles can be used as a domestic Certificate of Mailing in place of PS Form 3665, when the shipment contains three or more items.
    • As of January 22, 2017, PS Form 3877 will no longer be used as an international Certificate of Mailing. You may use PS Form 3665 as an international Certificate of Mailing, instead.
    • Customers who currently use privately printed versions of the PS Form 3877 will need to update their form to align with the new January 2017 version. Information on USPS approval for privately printed or computer-generated forms is included on the PS Form 3877. The approval process for these forms can be found in DMM 503, section 5.1.7, Privately Printed Forms. 
  • PS Form 3606 : You can view the Certificate of Bulk Mailing – International form online at: PS Form 3606 (PDF). This form is used to verify the number of identical-weight pieces in bulk international mailings.
  • PS Form 3606-D: You can view the Certificate of Bulk Mailing – Domestic form online at: PS Form 3606-D (PDF). This form is used to verify the number of identical-weight pieces in bulk domestic mailings.

 How Can I Use Certificate of Mailing

What classes / services can be combined with a Certificate of Mailing (using PS Forms 3817, 3665, and/or 3877)?

  • Available with
    • USPS First-Class Mail®
    • USPS First-Class Package Service-Commercial™ (except for parcels mailed at commercial plus prices)
    • USPS Priority Mail® service
    • USPS Retail Ground®
    • Bound Printed Matter
    • Library Mail
    • USPS Media Mail®
  • May be combined with Special Handling-Fragile.

What is the availability of a Certificate of Mailing for International mail?

A Certificate of Mailing is available with:

  • Postcards or Postal Cards
  • Unregistered First-Class Mail International® items
  • Unregistered First-Class Package International Service® items
  • Airmail M-bags®
  • Free Matter for the Blind

NOTE: As of January 22, 2017, PS Form 3877 can no longer be used as an international Certificate of Mailing. You must use PS Form 3817 as a Certificate of Mailing for both domestic and international shipments containing one or two items. For shipments containing three or more items, use PS Form 3665 as an international Certificate of Mailing,

Leave A Reply