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423 Shortpaid Mail

423.1 General Procedures at the Originating Mailing Office

When shortpaid items are returned to sender, endorse the item “Returned For…Additional Postage.” Enter the amount of the deficiency.

423.2 Disposition

Once the class of mail has been determined, follow the appropriate procedures below for shortpaid outbound international mail.

423.21 Global Express Guaranteed (GXG) Shipments

Shortpaid Global Express Guaranteed (GXG) shipments must be endorsed “POSTAGE PAID” and forwarded without delay to the appropriate Global Express Guaranteed processing site. Except for items paid with Click-N-Ship postage, immediately notify the sender of the action taken and request payment of the deficient postage. Shortpaid Global Express Guaranteed shipments paid with Click-N-Ship will be collected automatically through this system.

Note: Global Express Guaranteed shipments must not be held for postage due payment unless the deficiency can be obtained from the sender without delaying the dispatch of the shipment.

423.22 Express Mail International Shipments
423.221 Items Paid With Permit Imprint, USPS-Produced PVI Label, or EMCA

Regardless of the amount of deficiency, consider as paid in full each shortpaid Express Mail International item that is paid with a permit imprint, a USPS-produced postage validation imprinter (PVI) label, or Express Mail corporate account (EMCA), and dispatch it to the appropriate International Service Center (ISC).

423.222 Items Paid With Any Other Postage Payment Method

The disposition of a shortpaid Express Mail International item paid with a postage payment method other than a permit imprint, USPS-produced PVI label, or EMCA is based on the amount of the deficiency, as follows:

  1. Shortpaid $3.50 or less: Consider the item paid and dispatch it to the country of destination.
  2. Shortpaid more than $3.50: Base the disposition on whether or not the item has a return address, as follows:
    1. With a return address: Return the item to the sender. Endorse the item with rubber stamp R-1300-230, Return For…Additional Postage.
    2. Without a return address: Forward the item to the Mail Recovery Center for proper disposition.
423.23 Priority Mail International Parcel Items (Other Than Priority Mail International Flat Rate Envelopes and Small Flat Rate Boxes)
423.231 Items Paid With a Permit Imprint or USPS-Produced PVI Label

Regardless of the amount of deficiency, consider as paid in full each shortpaid Priority Mail International parcel item that is paid with a permit imprint or USPS-produced postage validation imprinter (PVI) label, and dispatch it to the appropriate International Service Center (ISC).

423.232 Items Paid With Any Other Postage Payment Method

The disposition of a shortpaid Priority Mail International parcel item paid with a postage payment method other than a permit imprint or USPS-produced PVI label is based on the amount of the deficiency, as follows:

  1. Shortpaid $3.50 or less: Consider the item paid and dispatch it to the country of destination.
  2. Shortpaid more than $3.50: Base the disposition on whether or not the item has a return address, as follows:
    1. With a return address: Return the item to the sender. Endorse the item with rubber stamp R-1300-230, Return For…Additional Postage.
    2. Without a return address: Forward the item to the Mail Recovery Center for proper disposition.

Note: For Priority Mail International Flat Rate Envelopes and Small Flat Rate Priced Boxes, see 423.24.

423.24 First-Class Mail International Items (including Postcards), Airmail M-bags, Priority Mail International Flat Rate Envelopes, and Priority Mail International Small Flat Rate Priced Boxes
423.241 Items Paid With a Permit Imprint or USPS-Produced PVI Label

Regardless of the amount of deficiency, consider as paid in full each shortpaid First-Class Mail International item (including a postcard), Airmail M-bag, Priority Mail International Flat Rate Envelope, and Priority Mail International Small Flat Rate Priced Box that is paid with a permit imprint or USPS-produced postage validation imprinter (PVI) label, and dispatch it to the appropriate International Service Center (ISC).

423.242 Items Paid With Any Other Postage Payment Method

The disposition of a shortpaid First-Class Mail International item (including a postcard), Airmail M-bag, Priority Mail International Flat Rate Envelope, and Priority Mail International Small Flat Rate Priced Box that is paid with a postage payment method other than a permit imprint or USPS-produced PVI label is based on the amount of the deficiency, as follows:

  1. Shortpaid $1.00 or less: Consider the item paid and dispatch it to the appropriate International Service Center (ISC). Endorse the item with a T-stamp in accordance with section 451.4 of Handbook T-5, International Mail Operations. If a T-stamp is not available, endorse the item with a Postage Due stamp and enter the amount of the deficiency on the mailpiece.
  2. Shortpaid more than $1.00: Base the disposition on whether or not the item has a return address, as follows:
    1. With a return address: Return the item to the sender. Endorse the item with rubber stamp R-1300-230, Return For…Additional Postage.
    2. Without a return address: Forward the item to the Mail Recovery Center for proper disposition.

423.3 Credit for Postage Paid

When computing the postage due on items that are returned to sender for insufficient postage, allow a credit for the postage already paid.

423.4 Parcels at Other Than Mailing Offices

Originating Network Distribution Centers (NDCs) must check for shortpaid parcels addressed to Canada and Mexico. Sectional centers and other intermediate offices, however, should not attempt to verify postage payment on parcels.