Contents Index
P000 Basic Information
P010 General Standards

P012 Documentation

Summary

P012 describes the standard documentation necessary to efficiently describe the content of a mailing. It also describes standardized documentation for First-Class Mail, Periodicals, and Standard Mail.

1.0 Purpose And Basic Standard

1.1General

Generally, documentation is required from a mailer when a mailing is presented to the USPS. Documentation describes the content of the mailing, details the volume and postage data, substantiates the rate or discount eligibility, reports the result of a process (i.e., presort or barcoding), and, by comparison with the actual mailing it describes, supports the claims contained on the postage statement accompanying the mailing and allows the USPS to verify its accuracy. Documentation must be submitted when specified for the rate claimed or postage payment method used.

1.2Preparation

As provided by standard, documentation may be presented in abbreviated form or on computer-readable media. Required documentation must be presented with every mailing unless, by standard, it may be provided to support multiple mailings or mailings that are part of the same job or cycle.

1.3Multiple Standards

If multiple documentation standards apply to the same mailing, only one set of documentation is necessary if it provides enough information to meet all applicable standards. Redundant or duplicate documentation is not required simply to meet individual standards.

1.4Mailer Responsibility

It is the mailer’s responsibility to ensure that all required postage statements and documentation are completed and submitted as specified in the standards for the class of mail and rate claimed.

1.5Additional Information

The postmaster of the office of mailing may require additional information if the documentation submitted does not allow the corresponding mailing to be verified. Failure to provide information is sufficient reason for the USPS to refuse a mailing. The mailer may appeal any determination to the RCSC under G020.

2.0 Standardized DocumentationFirst-Class Mail, Periodicals, Standard Mail, and FLAT-SIZE Bound Printed Matter

2.1Basic Standards

For First-Class Mail, Periodicals, Standard Mail, and flat-size Bound Printed Matter, documentation must be produced by software certified under the Presort Accuracy Validation and Evaluation (PAVE) program or the Manifest Analysis and Certification (MAC) program, appropriate for the accompanying class of mail and rate claimed, or the documentation must be prepared as standardized documentation according to this section. Standardized documentation contains the elements described in 2.2 through 2.5, as applicable. Documentation produced by PAVE-certified or MAC-certified software is considered standardized documentation.

2.2Format and Content

For First-Class Mail, Periodicals, Standard Mail, and flat-size Bound Printed Matter, standardized documentation includes:

a. A heading identifying the listing as a “USPS Qualification Report” appearing at the top of each page. The heading must contain these elements:

(1) For First-Class Mail and Standard Mail, the name of the mailer and the mailing, a mailing identification code corresponding to the postage statement, the date (e.g., the date when the list was processed or the documentation was produced), the class of mail, and either the DMM standard under which the mail was prepared (e.g., M610 or M800) or the type of rates claimed.

(2) For Periodicals, each publication title and publication number corresponding to the postage statement and entry office, the date (e.g., the date when the list was processed or the documentation was produced), the class of mail, and either the DMM standard under which the mail was prepared (e.g., M210, M220, or M800) or the type of rates claimed. For publications that are combined or copalletized and represented on the same documentation, all publication titles and publication numbers are required to be listed in the header only on the first page.

b. Sequential page numbers in the body of the listing.

c. For mail in trays or sacks, the body of the listing reporting these required elements:

(1) Tray/sack sortation level.

(2) Tray/sack destination ZIP Code (use destination on top line of tray/sack label except that, for 3-digit carrier routes trays, list the individual 5-digit ZIP Codes contained in each tray).

(3) [1-9-03] Depending on mail preparation: (a) group destination for automation letter mail (number of pieces) for each carrier route in carrier routes trays (First-Class Mail and Standard Mail) including the 5-digit ZIP Code and carrier route for pieces in 3-digit carrier routes trays; for each 5-digit ZIP Code in 5-digit scheme trays; for each 3-digit ZIP Code prefix in 3-digit scheme trays; for each 3-digit or 3-digit scheme in AADC trays; and for each AADC in mixed AADC trays; or (b) package level and package destination for automation flats, regular nonautomation presort mail, and Enhanced Carrier Route Standard Mail (use the presort destination as described in M011); or (c) group destination for automation flats prepared under the tray-based option for each 3-digit in ADC trays and for each ADC in mixed ADC trays; or (d) for each 5-digit ZIP Code in 5-digit scheme packages (Periodicals, Standard Mail, and AFSM 100-compatible Bound Printed Matter flats ).

(4) [1-9-03] Separate columns for each rate reported in the mailing, with pieces reported in the appropriate column, and a running total of pieces mailed that is continuous for each mailing (group information either in ZIP Code order and by sortation level or by sortation level and within each sortation level, by ZIP Code; report trays and sacks on pallets by pallet level and destination; include all information required in 2.2c for mail in trays or sacks). Pieces prepared in 5-digit scheme packages (Periodicals, Standard Mail, and AFSM 100-compatible Bound Printed Matter flats) must be listed by individual 5-digit ZIP Code within the 5-digit scheme package. Document SCF or BMC pallets created as a result of package reallocation under M045.4.0 or 5.0 on the USPS Qualification Report by designating the protected pallet with an identifier of “PSCF” (for an SCF pallet) or “PBMC” (for a BMC pallet). These identifiers are required only on the USPS Qualification Report; they are not required on pallet labels or on any other mailing documentation.

(5) A running total of pieces mailed that is continuous for each mailing.

(6) The tray identification number and tray size (1-foot or 2-foot) if available for letter mail in trays. The tray identification number is optional for tray-based automation flats.

(7) Separate columns for each rate reported in the mailing, with pieces reported in the appropriate column (group information either in ZIP Code order and by sortation level or by sortation level and within each sortation level, by ZIP Code).

(8) For all nonautomation rate Periodicals mailings that contain firm packages, include a separate “Copies” column showing the number of copies for each package sortation level and destination. If mailings do not include firm packages, a “Copies” column is optional because the number of copies equals the number of pieces reported. Copies included in firm packages may be listed with other pieces to the same presort level destination with the number of copies and number of pieces reported as one line item entry, or firm packages may be listed as separate line items under the “Group Destination” column followed by “F” (e.g., “C001F” or “12345F”), with the number of pieces reported in the “Rate” column. When firm packages are reported separately in the “Group Destination” column, pieces for the same presort destination must be reported immediately before or after the firm packages (e.g., one firm package for “C001” followed by five other pieces for “C001” that constitute a package of six pieces for the carrier route rate).

(9) For all Periodicals mailings, include a separate “Zone” column. If all copies for a specific tray destination (automation letters only), group destination, or package destination are subject to the same zone rate or entry discount, show the applicable zone or destination entry discount for those copies using the zone abbreviations in 3.2. If copies for a package destination or pieces for a tray destination (automation letters only) are for multiple zones, show all zones included (e.g., “3/4/6”) or show “Mixed” (or the authorized abbreviation “M”) in the “Zone” column. Report foreign copies separately.

d. For packages on pallets, the body of the listing reporting these required elements:

(1) Pallet sortation level.

(2) Pallet destination ZIP Code (use destination on top line of pallet label).

(3) For each package, the sortation level and number of pieces claimed at each rate.

(4) Separate columns for each rate reported in the mailing, with pieces reported in the appropriate column, and a running total of pieces mailed that is continuous for each mailing (group information either in ZIP Code order and by sortation level or by sortation level and within each sortation level, by ZIP Code; report trays and sacks on pallets by pallet level and destination; include all information required in 2.2c for mail in trays or sacks). Document SCF or BMC pallets created as a result of package reallocation under M045.4.0 or 5.0 on the USPS Qualification Report by designating the protected pallet with an identifier of “PSCF” (for a SCF pallet) or “PBMC” (for a BMC pallet). These identifiers are required to appear only on the USPS Qualification Report; they are not required to appear on pallet labels or on any other mailing documentation.

(5) For mailings prepared as packages on pallets under M930 and M940, a separate 5% threshold summary must appear beneath the pallet rate summary for the last physical pallet of each logical merged 5-digit scheme pallet and logical merged 5-digit pallet as provided in M930.1.1, M930.2.1, M940.1.1, or M940.2.1, as applicable.

(6) For all Periodicals mailings, include a separate “Zone” column. If all copies for a specific package destination are subject to the same zone rate or entry discount, show the applicable zone or destination entry discount for those copies using the zone abbreviations in 3.2. If copies for a package destination are for multiple zones, show all zones included (e.g., “3/4/6”) or show “Mixed” (or the authorized abbreviation “M”) in the “Zone” column. Report foreign copies separately.

(7) At the end of the listing, a summary report of the total number of pieces claimed at each postage rate on the pallet by postage payment method, and the total number of pieces and the total weight of the mail on the pallet.

e. At the end of the documentation, a summary report of the total number of pieces mailed at each postage rate for each mailing reported on the listing by postage payment method (and by entry point for drop shipment mailings) and the total number of pieces in each mailing. This information must correspond to the information reported on the postage statement(s) for the pieces reported. For Periodicals, include a summary of the total number of copies for each zone, including In-County, delivery unit, SCF, and ADC rates. A separate summary report is not required if a PAVE-certified postage statement facsimile(s) generated by the presort software used to prepare the standardized documentation is presented for each mailing. Additional data must be provided if necessary to calculate the amount of postage for the mailing (or additional postage due, or postage to be refunded) if nonidentical-weight pieces that do not bear the correct postage at the rate for which they qualify are included in the mailing, or if different rates of postage are affixed to pieces in the mailing.

2.3Rate Level Column Headings

The actual name of the rate level (or corresponding abbreviation) is used for column headings required by 2.2 and shown below:

a. Automation First-Class Mail, Periodicals, and Standard Mail:

Rate Abbreviation
Carrier Route [First-Class Mail letters/cards] CB
5-Digit [First-Class Mail letters/cards and flats, Periodicals letters and flats, and Standard Mail letters] 5B
3-Digit [First-Class Mail letters/cards and flats, Periodicals letters and flats, and Standard Mail letters] 3B
AADC [First-Class Mail letters/cards and Standard Mail letters] AB
ADC [First-Class Mail flats] AB
Mixed AADC [First-Class Mail letters/cards and Standard Mail letters] MB
Mixed ADC [First-Class Mail flats] MB
3/5 [Standard Mail flats] 3/5B
Basic [Standard Mail flats] BB

b. Presorted First-Class Mail, nonautomation presorted Periodicals, and Standard Mail:

Rate Abbreviation
Presorted [First-Class Mail letters/cards, flats, and parcels] Presort
5-Digit [Periodicals letters, flats, and parcels] 5D
3-Digit [Periodicals letters, flats, and parcels] 3D
3/5 [Standard Mail letters, flats, and parcels] 3/5
Basic [letters/cards and flats] BS

c. Carrier route Periodicals and Enhanced Carrier Route Standard Mail :

Rate Abbreviation
Saturation [letters, flats, and irregular parcels]    WS
High Density [letters, flats, and irregular parcels] HD
Basic [letters, flats, and irregular parcels] CR
Basic Automation [Standard Mail letters] CB
2.4Sortation Level

[1-9-03] The actual sortation level (or corresponding abbreviation) is used for the package, tray, sack, or pallet levels required by 2.2 and shown below:

Sortation Level Abbreviation
Carrier Route  CRD
5-Digit Carrier Routes CR5
5-Digit Scheme Carrier Routes [sacks and pallets, Periodicals flats and
irregular parcels, Standard Mail flats]
 CR5S
5-Digit Scheme [barcoded letters, barcoded and co-packaged flats]  5DGS
5-Digit Scheme [pallets, Periodicals flats and irregular parcels, Standard Mail flats]  5DGS
Merged 5-Digit [sacks and pallets,
Periodicals flats and irregular parcels, Standard Mail flats]
 M5D
Merged 5-Digit Scheme [sacks and
pallets, Periodicals flats and irregular parcels, Standard Mail flats]
 M5DS
5-Digit  5DG
5-Digit Metro [pallets only, for Periodicals flats and irregular parcels, Standard Mail flats, and Bound Printed Matter flats] MET
3-Digit Carrier Routes CR3
3-Digit  3DG
3-Digit Scheme [barcoded letters]  3DGS
ADC  ADC
AADC  AADC
Mixed ADC  MADC
Mixed AADC  MAAD
SCF [pallets, Periodicals flats, Bound Printed Matter] SCF
SCF [pallets created from package
reallocation]
 PSCF
BMC  BMC
ASF ASF
BMC [pallets created from package
reallocation]
 PBMC
Mixed BMC [working]  MBMC
2.5Combined, Copalletized, and Merged Mailings

For combined or copalletized mailings of Periodicals and Standard Mail prepared under M045, M920, M930, or M940, the listing must show this additional information:

a. For mailings that require a separate postage statement, a column that further identifies the contents of all trays/packages by product or edition code. The applicable rates for each product or edition must be shown in the correct “Rate” column and must be summarized for each tray, sack, or pallet and for the entire mailing. For Periodicals, when copies of multiple editions or publications are combined in a firm package claimed as one piece, report “0” in the “Product/Edition Code” column for all but one edition or publication contained in the firm package, report “1” in the appropriate associated “Piece Rate” column for that edition or publication, and report “0” in the “Piece Rate” column for the other editions or publications contained in the firm package.

b. For large-volume mailing jobs reported on a single listing, the mailer may provide abbreviated documentation that shows full package detail for the first 20 pallets/sacks and every twentieth pallet/sack after that if the mailer keeps full package detail (by product or edition code and rate) for the entire mailing job for 90 days and can provide it to the USPS on request within 3 working days. Abbreviated documentation must include the rate summary by product or edition for each pallet/sack, including those for which full detail package listings are not reported.

2.6Optional Information

Standardized documentation may include additional information about the pieces mailed (such as individual tray or sack total piece counts, optional identification codes, package weights) if this information does not conflict with the information required under 2.2 through 2.5.

3.0 Detailed Zone Listing for Periodicals

3.1Definition and Retention

The publisher must be able to present documentation to support the actual number of copies of each edition of an issue, by entry point, mailed to each zone, at DDU, DSCF, DADC, and In-County rates. This listing is separate from the standardized documentation required under 2.0 to support presort. This listing may be submitted with each mailing, or, as an alternative, a publisher may keep records supporting zone and destination entry information reported on the postage statement for each mailing. Records must be kept for 2 months after the mailing date. A publisher must be able to submit detailed zone listings for specific mailings when requested in advance by the USPS.

3.2Characteristics

Report the number of copies mailed to each 3-digit ZIP Code area at applicable zone rates using one of the following formats:

a. Report copies by 3-digit ZIP Code, listed in ascending numeric order, for all ZIP Codes in the mailing. The listing must include the following columns: 3-digit ZIP Code, zone, and number of copies (for the zone). Include a summary of the number of copies at each zone rate at the end of the report. A 3-digit ZIP Code may appear more than once if there are copies at different zone rates for that ZIP Code (e.g., In-County and outside-county rate copies within the same 3-digit ZIP Code area).

b. Report copies by zone (In-County DDU, In-County others, Outside-County DDU, Outside-County DSCF, and Outside-County DADC) and by 3-digit ZIP Code, listed in ascending numeric order, for each zone. For each zone, the listing must include the following columns: 3-digit ZIP Code and number of copies (for each zone) in the mailing. Include a summary of the total number of copies for each zone at the end of each zone listing. A 3-digit ZIP Code may appear under more than one zone if there are copies at different zone rates for that ZIP Code (e.g., In-County and outside-county rate copies within the same 3-digit ZIP Code area).

3.3Zone Abbreviations

Use the actual rate name or the authorized zone abbreviation in the listings in 2.0 and 3.2:

Zone Abbreviation Rate Equivalent
ICD In-County, DDU
IC In-County, others
DDU Outside-County, DDU
SCF Outside-County, DSCF
ADC Outside-County, DADC
1-2 or 1/2 zones 1 and 2
3, 4, 5, 6, 7, or 8 (as applicable) zones 3 through 8 (as applicable)
M mixed zones

4.0 Postage Statement

4.1Reporting Mailings

Each group of pieces prepared as a separate mailing must be presented with a postage statement using the correct USPS form for the particular class, rate, and postage payment method. A mailer may report more than one mailing from a single job (e.g., an Enhanced Carrier Route Standard Mail rate mailing, an automation rate mailing, and a nonautomation rate mailing) on the same postage statement if the mailings are presented at the same time for verification, the pieces are in the same processing category, each mailing separately meets all applicable eligibility standards, and the number of pieces in each mailing is separately reported on the postage statement.

4.2Completing Postage Statements

Any mailing claiming a discount and all permit imprint mailings must be accompanied by a postage statement completed and signed by the mailer (in duplicate if the mailer wants a receipted copy). The mailer may submit a computer-generated facsimile (see 4.3). A change made to any postage statement requires the mailer (agent) to correct the postage statement accordingly and document the correction.

4.3Facsimile Postage Statements

Facsimile postage statements must contain data and elements in locations as close as possible to where they appear on the USPS form. Data fields that do not pertain to information and rates claimed in the mailing and other extraneous information that appears on the USPS form do not have to be included. Facsimiles must include all other information pertaining to the mailing, including the class of mail (or subclass as appropriate), postage payment method (e.g., permit imprint), and four-digit form number (hyphen and suffix, optional). All parts, and line numbers within each part, must reflect those on the USPS form(s). In some cases, this can include fields from multiple USPS forms onto a single facsimile. For example: Part A, lines A5, A6, and total – Part A from Form 3602-R, and Part F, lines F1, F2, and total – Part F from Form 3602-RS, can be consolidated onto a single Form 3602 (Facsimile). Most importantly, the facsimile must fully and exactly reproduce the “Certification” and “USPS Use Only” fields that appear on the USPS form. A facsimile postage statement produced by software certified by the USPS Presort Accuracy Validation and Evaluation (PAVE) or Manifest Analysis and Certification (MAC) program is considered a USPS-approved form for these standards. Others may be approved by the entry office postmaster. Periodicals mailers authorized centralized postage payment (CPP) procedures receive approval from the New York RCSC.

DMM Issue 58 (8-10-03)