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September 14, 2012
The effective date for the Folded Self-Mailers (FSM) revised standards is drawing near—January 5, 2013. The final rule Federal Register was published on December 1, 2011. Additional FSM reference materials including graphic illustrations are on RIBBS under the Folded Self-Mailers web page at https://ribbs.usps.gov/index.cfm?page=fsm. Business Mail Entry employees and Mailpiece Design Analysts can also help answer questions on the revised FSM standards.
The revised standards are intended to provide mailers more mailpiece design options, while balancing design innovation and machinability to improve the overall supply chain. Although the revised standards are not effective until January 5, 2013, the Postal Service encourages mailers to begin the transition now.
Key points in the revised standards include:
§ The final fold must be on the bottom, for oblong pieces, the final fold is on the leading edge.
§ When tabs are used as the sealing method, a minimum of two are required. Tabs cannot be placed on the bottom edge of oblong pieces.
§ New language added about glue as a sealing method.
§ New language added about a variety of optional elements that can be incorporated in the FSM design such as attachments, loose enclosures, perforations, and die-cuts.