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770 Undeliverable Mail

771 Mail of Domestic Origin

771.1 General Procedure

Items that originate in the United States and are found to be undeliverable in the destination country will generally be returned to the U.S. sender.

771.2 Exceptions

Ordinary (unregistered) items of printed matter, other than books, are not returned, unless the sender has requested their return. Parcels whose customs declaration requests abandonment in event of nondelivery are usually not returned.

771.3 Endorsements

Mail returned to the United States should bear an endorsement specifying the reason for nondelivery. The following French and Spanish language endorsements are frequently noted on returned mail:

Adresse Insuffisant (Fr) Insufficient Address
Insufficiente (direccion) (Sp) Insufficient Address
Parti (Fr) Left (Gone Away)
Ausente (Sp) Left (Gone Away)
Demenage (Fr) Moved
Decede (Fr) Deceased
Fallecido (Sp) Deceased
Murio (Sp) Deceased
Inconnu (Fr) Unknown
Desconocido (Sp) Unknown
Non Reclame (Fr) Unclaimed
No Reclamado (Sp) Unclaimed
Refuse (Fr) Refused
Rehusado (Sp) Refused
Objets Interdits (Fr) Prohibited Items
Objectos Prohibidos (Sp) Prohibited Items
License d' Importation Manque (Fr) No Import License
De passe le Poids Reglementaire (Fr) Overweight Parcel
En Sus de la Norme (contenu) (Fr) Contents Exceed the Limits
Rezagos (Sp) Return-Undeliverable

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771.4 Remailing of Returned Mail

New postage must be applied to returned items, which are subsequently reentered into the mail.

771.5 Return Charges for Letter-Post Mail

771.51 General Procedure

Except as noted in 771.52, undeliverable-as-addressed letter-post mail that a foreign postal administration returns to the U.S. sender is not subject to the payment of return charges. This provision applies to postal items that were originally entered at the following rates of postage:

a. Airmail or economy (surface) letter-post.

b. Postcard or postal card.

c. International Priority Airmail (IPA).

d. Airmail or economy (surface) M-bag.

e. International Surface Airlift (ISAL).

f. Economy (surface) books and sheet music.

g. Economy (surface) publishers' periodicals.

771.52 Exceptions

Delivery Post Office facilities should collect return charges from the U.S. sender under the following circumstances:

a. If a returned letter-post item bears a short-paid endorsement that was originally applied by the Postal Service dispatching exchange office, the delivery office should collect the amount of the postage deficiency that would otherwise have been collected from the foreign addressee.

b. If a returned letter-post item bears a collection instruction that was applied by a Postal Service International Service Center (ISC), international exchange office, or mail recovery center, the delivery office should collect the "due amount" that is specified on the mailpiece.

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771.6 Return Charges for Parcel Post

On delivery to the sender, return parcels are subject to collection of return postage and any other charges, including charges assessed by the foreign postal authorities. The amount of such charges will be indicated by the international exchange office, usually on a PS Form 2993, Returned or Redirected Parcel (label).

771.7 Handling of Returned Parcels

771.71 Refused by Sender

If the sender refuses a returned parcel, it must be disposed of as dead parcel post.

771.72 Sender Has Moved to Another U.S. Address

If the sender has moved to another address in the United States, the returned parcel may be redirected, subject to forwarding postage, at the U.S. domestic zone rate.

771.73 Sender Has Moved to Another Country

If the sender has moved to another country, the Post Office facility must hold the parcel and request instructions from the international claims and inquiries office that handles international inquiries for the country in which the sender (or address) of the parcel is located. Requests should be sent to the postmaster at the appropriate international claims and inquiries office shown in 931.22, and include the following information:

a. New address of the sender.

b. Amount of return charges due on the parcel.

c. Weight of the parcel.

d. Whether the parcel is insured.

e. Nature and value of the contents as shown on the customs declaration.

772 Mail of Foreign Origin

772.1 Marking

772.11 Reason for Nondelivery

At the end of the retention period, undeliverable items must be endorsed with the reason for nondelivery (see DMM 507).

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772.12 Postmarking

Apply a legible postmark to back of return letters and front of return postcards.

772.13 Address

Cross out but do not obliterate the address, and draw an arrow to return address.

772.14 Method of Return

Undeliverable airmail letters and cards and all letter-post items marked "PRIORITY" are returned to origin by air. All parcels and other items are returned by surface. Any "AIRMAIL" or "PAR AVION" endorsements or label must be obliterated on undeliverable items returned by surface.

772.15 Abandoned Parcel

If the sender of a parcel has given instructions on the wrapper or dispatch note that the parcel is to be abandoned if undeliverable, endorse the parcel "ABANDONED" (see 772.32c).

772.2 Dutiable Mail

Detach both copies of Customs Form (CF) 3419, Mail Entry - Customs, and treat them in accordance with 713.33 and 713.52.

772.3 Disposal

772.31 General Procedure

Dispatch undeliverable air letters, aerogrammes, and air postcards bearing a return address to the appropriate air exchange office as if they were originating mail. Dispatch all other undeliverable air items and all undeliverable surface items to the appropriate surface exchange office as if they were originating mail.

772.32 Exceptions

The following exceptions apply:

a. Postcards that do not bear the sender's request for return and postcards with no return address are disposed of in accordance with DMM 507.

b. Ordinary (unregistered) printed matter, other than books, which does not bear the sender's request for return, is disposed of in accordance with DMM 507. Books and registered prints must always be returned to origin.

c. Parcels with no return address or endorsed "ABANDONED" (see 772.15) must be sent to the appropriate mail recovery center. If the parcel was assessed duty, detach Customs Form (CF) 3419 and report it as an uncollected item (see 713.52) before forwarding it to the appropriate mail recovery center.

d. Canadian Periodicals Mail publications are treated in accordance with DMM 507.

e. Canadian originating mail of all classifications not covered by a and b above and not bearing the sender's name and address must be sent to the following address:

UNDELIVERABLE MAIL OFFICE
CANADA POST CORPORATION
1860 MIDLAND AVE UNIT 1
SCARBOROUGH ON M1P 2M0
CANADA

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780 Items Mailed Abroad by or on Behalf of Senders in the United States

781 Postage Payment Required

Payment of U.S. postage is required to secure delivery of mail when the mailing is by or on behalf of a person or firm that is a resident of the United States and the foreign postage rate applied to such items is lower than the comparable U.S. domestic postage rate.

782 Definition of Terms

782.1 Resident

A resident of the United States includes any firm that has a place of business in the United States or is incorporated or otherwise organized in the United States, its territories, or its possessions.

782.2 By or on Behalf

A mailing is made by or on behalf of a person or firm that is a resident of the United States if such a resident seeks or expects to derive economic benefit or advantage from that mailing.

782.3 Place of Business

A place of business in the United States is any location in the United States, its territories, or its possessions where a firm's employees or agents regularly have personal contact with other individuals for conducting the firm's business. For the purposes of this section, a firm whose employees or agents have personal contact with others for conducting the firm's business in different places in the United States for short periods (for example, at hotels in different cities for 1 or 2 days at a time) is considered to have a place of business in the United States if the aggregate amount of time spent in the United States is 180 days or more within 12 consecutive months.

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782.4 Agent

The use of a nonexclusive agent in the United States for the sole purpose of accepting orders and remissions for transmission to a firm in another country or for the sole purpose of distributing merchandise manufactured in another country and shipped to the United States in bulk does not by itself establish a place of business in the United States.

783 Advance Payment Required

783.1 Sample Mailpiece

A sender affected by the provisions in 781 must submit a sample mailpiece (envelope and contents) from the proposed mailing; a statement about the number of items to be mailed, the date of mailing, and the place of mailing; and a check, made payable to the U.S. Postal Service, to cover the amount of the applicable U.S. postage. The sample mailpiece, statement, and check must be sent to:

MANAGER INTERNATIONAL PRODUCTS
US POSTAL SERVICE
475 L'ENFANT PLZ SW RM 3216
WASHINGTON DC 20260-3216

783.2 Headquarters Notification

Headquarters provides notification of postage acceptance and approval of the mailing to the sender and to the receiving U.S. exchange office. This notification permits the items in the mailing to go forward to the addressees without delay when the items reach the United States.

784 Advance Payment Not Made

784.1 Return or Disposal of Items

Items may be returned to origin or disposed of in accordance with Postal Service regulations if U.S. postage is not paid.

784.2 Mailings Without Advance Payment

A mailing subject to the provisions in 781 received without advance payment of U.S. domestic postage is held at the receiving U.S. exchange office. The exchange office reports the mailing to the manager of International Pricing, Postal Service Headquarters. (The exchange office is advised to release the mail when the applicable postage is paid.) The report must contain the following information:

a. Title and/or nature of the items.

b. Identity of the sender.

c. Number of items detained.

d. Weight of a single item.

e. Foreign postage paid per item.

f. Country of mailing.

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785 Report of Mailings

The receiving U.S. exchange office must report any mail appearing to be subject to the provisions of this subchapter to the manager of International Pricing, Postal Service Headquarters.

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