Requester Subscriptions with Premium
Updated October 1996
Support Ruling discusses the eligibility of a request for a
Periodicals publication that was induced by a premium offer.
A question was
raised concerning a publisher’s solicitation for request orders that
offered individuals with expired requester subscriptions a chance to
win a variety of items if they complete and return the renewal forms
to the publisher.
(DMM) 707.6.4.2, specifies in part, that persons will not be deemed
to have requested the publication if their request is induced by a
premium offer or by a receipt of material consideration. In order
to constitute a legitimate request, it must be clear that the
individual requests the publication on its own merits and not as a
result of an inducement by a premium offer or by the receipt of
In this case,
the prizes offered by the publisher related to a sweepstakes entry
and were of substantial value. Therefore, the chance to win any of
these prizes carried with it a value which would be considered a
premium offer or material consideration.
by entering a sweepstakes, lottery, or similar arrangement cannot be
considered legitimate requests. Publishers should be advised that
obtaining a substantial number of orders in this manner will
jeopardize their Periodicals mailing privileges if the total number
of invalid requests exceeds 50%.
postal personnel asked to determine whether a sweepstakes or lottery
offer, etc., is in violation of the lottery statute (18 U.S.C. 1302)
should submit a request for a ruling to the Chief Counsel, Consumer
Protection, U. S. Postal Service Headquarters, Washington, DC
United States Postal Service
Washington DC 20260-3436