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  DMM TOC > 200 Commercial Letters and Cards

202 Elements on the Face of a Mailpiece

1.0 All Mailpieces

1.1 Clear Space

A clear space must be available on all mail for the address, postage (permit imprint, postage stamp, or meter stamp), postmarks, and postal endorsements.

1.2 Delivery and Return Address

The delivery address specifies the location to which the USPS is to deliver a mailpiece. Except for mail prepared with detached address labels under 602.4.0, the piece must have the address of the intended recipient, visible and legible, only on the side of the piece bearing postage (Periodicals do not display postage and the address may appear on either side). Use at least 8-point type (each character must be at least 0.080 inch high). A sans-serif font is preferred. Addresses printed in all capital letters are also preferred. A return address is required in specific circumstances (see 4.2 and 602.1.5 for more information about return addresses). See 602 for additional information regarding addressing.)

1.3 Postage Payment

The mailer is responsible for proper payment of postage. Standards for postage payment are specified for each shape and class of mail.

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2.0 Address Placement

2.1 Letters

[6-2-14] The location of the delivery address on a letter-size mailpiece determines which dimensions are the length and height of the piece. The length is the dimension parallel to the address as read; the height is the dimension perpendicular to the length. Consequently, the placement of the address may render a piece nonmailable or nonmachinable (see 601.1.1.3). See 601.6.4 for addressing standards when a window envelope is used. On a letter-size piece, the recommended address placement is within the optical character reader (OCR) read area, which is a space on the address side of the mailpiece defined by these boundaries (see Exhibit 2.1):

a. Left: 1/2 inch from the left edge of the piece.

b. Right: 1/2 inch from the right edge of the piece.

c. Top: 2-3/4 inches from the bottom edge of the piece.

d. Bottom: 5/8 inch from the bottom edge of the piece.

Exhibit 2.1 OCR Read Area

Shows the OCR read area for letter-size mail.

2.2 Flats

2.2.1 Basic Standards

[6-2-14] On all Periodicals, Standard Mail, Bound Printed Matter, Media Mail, and Library Mail flats mailed at presorted, automation, or carrier route prices, mailers must place the delivery address at least 1/8 inch from any edge of the mailpiece. For the purposes of these standards, the “delivery address” is the recipient’s name or other identification; the company information line; the street and number, and any necessary secondary information; and the city, state, and ZIP Code. The delivery address may appear on the front or the back of the mailpiece (but must be on the side bearing postage, except for Periodicals), parallel or perpendicular to the top edge, but it cannot be upside down as read in relation to the top edge. See 2.2.2 for additional standards for enveloped or polywrapped pieces, and card-style pieces; and 2.2.3 for bound or folded pieces not in envelopes or polywrap. See 601.6.4 for addressing standards when a window envelope is used.

2.2.2 Address Placement on Enveloped or Polywrapped Pieces

[6-2-14] The following standards apply to enveloped, polywrapped, or card-style Periodicals (including shrinkwrapped Firm bundles), Standard Mail, Bound Printed Matter, Media Mail, and Library Mail flats mailed at presorted, automation, or carrier route prices:

a. The “top” of the mailpiece is either of the shorter edges.

b. The entire delivery address must be within the top half of the mailpiece (see Exhibit 2.2.2), except under 2.2.2c or 2.2.2d. Optimal placement is at the top edge (while maintaining the 1/8-inch clearance requirement).

c. If a vertical address will not fit entirely within the top half, the address may cross the midpoint if it is placed within 1 inch of the top edge.

d. If the delivery address is placed on an insert polywrapped with the host piece:

1. The address must not appear on a component that rotates within the bag.

2. The address must remain visible throughout the addressed component's range of motion.

3. The insert must be affixed to maintain the address entirely in the top half throughout processing and delivery or, if not affixed, the insert must maintain at least the beginning 0.5 inch of the address in the top half. The “beginning 0.5 inch” means the first half-inch of the recipient, delivery address, and city/state/ZIP Code lines, and not the end of each line.

Exhibit 2.2.2 Delivery Address on Enveloped, Polywrapped, and Card-Style Pieces

2.2.3 Address Placement on Bound or Folded Pieces

[6-2-14] The following standards apply to bound or folded Periodicals, Standard Mail, Bound Printed Matter, Media Mail, and Library Mail flats mailed at presorted, automation, or carrier route prices not in envelopes or polywrap (see 2.2.2 for all card-style pieces):

a. The “top” is the upper edge of the mailpiece when the bound or final folded edge is vertical and on the right side of the piece. Exception: For Carrier Route (or Enhanced Carrier Route) saturation pieces, the “top” of the mailpiece is either of the shorter edges.

b. The entire delivery address must be within the top half of the mailpiece (see Exhibit 2.2.3), except under 2.2.3c. Optimal placement is at the top edge (while maintaining the 1/8-inch clearance requirement).

c. If a vertical address will not fit entirely within the top half, the address may cross the midpoint if it is placed within 1 inch of the top edge.

Exhibit 2.2.3 Delivery Address on Bound or Folded Pieces

2.2.4 Type Size and Line Spacing

[6-2-14] On all First-Class Mail, Periodicals, Standard Mail, Bound Printed Matter, Media Mail, and Library Mail flats mailed at presorted, automation, or carrier route prices, mailers must print the delivery address using at least 8-point type (each character must be at least 0.080 inch high). A sans serif font is preferred. Addresses printed in all capital letters are also preferred. These additional standards apply to automation pieces:

a. The individual characters in the address cannot overlap. The individual lines in the address cannot touch or overlap. A minimum 0.028-inch clear space between lines is preferred.

b. Each element on each line of the address may be separated by no more than five blank character spaces. One or two blank spaces is preferred. For example, “ANYTOWN US 12345,” not “ANYTOWN US  12345.” A “blank” character space can equal the width of the widest character in the address.

c. For pieces that bear an Intelligent Mail barcode with a delivery point routing code under 708.4.3, mailers may print the delivery address in a minimum of 6-point type (each character must be at least 0.065 inch high) if all capital letters are used.

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3.0 Placement and Content of Mail Markings

3.1 Enclosures

[6-2-14] Enclosures, attachments, and mixed price mailpieces must be marked under the applicable standards in 703.9.0 and 705.18.0.

3.2 Printing and Designs

Required markings may be printed by a postage meter or other means that ensures a legible marking. A marking may not include or be part of a decorative design or advertisement.

3.3 Priority Mail Express, Priority Mail, and Critical Mail Markings

3.3.1 Priority Mail Express

[6-2-14] Priority Mail Express pieces must be marked “Priority Mail Express,” by using a mailing label according to 215.2.1

3.3.2 Priority Mail

[6-2-14] Priority Mail pieces must have the basic price marking of “Priority Mail” printed in a prominent location on the address side. If shipping address labels are used, it is recommended that they contain the Priority Mail service indicator composed of two elements, the service icon and service banner (see Exhibit 3.3.2):

a. The service icon should appear in a 1-inch square in the upper left corner of the shipping label. The letter “P” must be printed inside the 1-inch square and must be 0.75 inches (3/4 inch) or greater. A minimum 3/4-point line must border the 1-inch square.

b. The service banner should appear directly below the postage payment area and the service icon, and it should extend across the shipping label. When the service banner is used, the text “USPS PRIORITY MAIL” must be printed in minimum 20-point bold sans serif typeface, uppercase letters, centered within the banner, and bordered above and below by minimum 1-point separator lines. There must be a 1/16-inch clearance above and below the text.

Exhibit 3.3.2 Priority Mail Service Indicator

3.3.3 Critical Mail

[6-2-14] Critical Mail must have the marking “Critical Mail” preprinted on the USPS-produced packaging.

Critical Mail with permit imprint postage must have “Critical Mail” as the class of mail in the indicia (under 604.5.0) when a class of mail is printed. In addition, except for pieces paid using a USPS Corporate Account, Merchandise Return Service, or permit imprint, Priority Mail Express and Priority Mail pieces claiming Commercial Base or Commercial Plus prices also must bear the appropriate commercial price marking, printed on the piece or produced as part of the meter imprint or PC Postage indicia. Place the commercial price marking directly above, directly below, or to the left of the postage. Markings are as follows:

a. “Commercial Base Price” “Commercial Base Pricing” or “ComBasPrice”

b. “Commercial Plus Price” “Commercial Plus Pricing” or “ComPlsPrice”

3.4 Priority Mail Commercial Plus Cubic Markings

3.4.1 Price Marking—Postage Evidencing Systems

[6-2-14] Priority Mail pieces claiming the Commercial Plus cubic price must be marked “Priority Mail” and bear the applicable marking that reflects the correct price tier printed on the piece or produced as part of the postage indicia. The cubic tiers are determined by the cubic measurement of each mailpiece up to the defined threshold, (for example, measurements from .01 up to .10 for “Cubic .10” and from .101 up to .20 for “Cubic .20”). Place the marking directly above, directly below, or to the left of the postage. Approved markings are as follows:

a. “Cubic .10”

b. “Cubic .20”

c. “Cubic .30”

d. “Cubic .40”

e. “Cubic .50”

3.4.2 Price Marking—Permit Imprint

[6-2-14] Priority Mail permit imprint pieces claiming the Commercial Plus cubic price must be marked “Priority Mail” and bear the “cubic” marking (see 3.4.3 for soft pack and padded envelopes), printed on the piece or produced as part of the permit imprint indicia. Place the marking directly above, directly below, or to the left of the postage. The approved marking is “Cubic” (or “CUBIC,” or “cubic”).

3.4.3 Soft Pack and Padded Envelope Markings

[6-2-14] Regardless of the postage payment method used, soft pack and padded envelopes must be marked “Priority Mail” in addition to the tier price markings in 3.4.1 and the dimensions (length and width) of the original packaging. Place the markings directly above, directly below, or to the left of the postage.

3.5 First-Class Mail and Standard Mail Markings

[6-2-14] Mailpieces must be marked under the corresponding standards to show the class of service and/or price paid:

a. Basic Marking. The basic required marking that indicates the class or subclass which must be printed or produced as part of; directly below; or to the left of the permit imprint, meter imprint, or stamp as follows:

1. “First-Class”

2. “Standard” or “STD”

3. “Presorted Standard” or “PRSRT STD”

4. “Nonprofit Organization,” “Nonprofit Org.,” or “Nonprofit”

b. Other Markings. The price-specific markings “AUTO,” “Presorted” (or “PRSRT”); “Single-Piece” (or “SNGLP”) (First-Class Mail only); and “ECRLOT,” “ECRWSH,” “ECRWSS,” and “Customized MarketMail” (or “CUST MKTMAIL” or “CMM”) (Standard Mail only) may be placed as follows:

1. In the location specified in 3.5a..

2. In the address area on the line directly above or two lines above the address if the marking appears alone or if no other information appears on the line with the marking except optional endorsement line information under 708.7.0 or carrier route bundle information under 708.6.0.

3. If preceded by two asterisks (**), the “AUTO,” “PRESORTED” (or “PRSRT”), “CUSTOMIZED MARKETMAIL” (or “CUST MKTMAIL” or “CMM”), or “Single-Piece” (or “SNGLP”) marking also may be placed on the line directly above or two lines above the address in a mailer keyline or a manifest keyline, or it may be placed above the address and below the postage in an MLOCR ink-jet printed date correction/meter drop shipment line. Alternatively, the “AUTO,” “PRSRT,” or “SNGLP” marking may be placed to the left of the barcode clear zone (subject to the standards in 5.0) on letter-size pieces.

c. Additional Requirements for Carrier Route. “ECRLOT,” “ECRWSH,” and “ECRWSS” (Standard Mail only) must appear in their entirety wherever placed, except “ECR” may be placed in the postage area if “LOT,” “WSH,” or “WSS,” as applicable, is placed in the line above or two lines above the address, as specified in 3.5b.. Pieces not mailed at ECR prices must not bear these markings.

3.6 First-Class Package Service Markings

[6-2-14] Markings must be placed as follows:

a. Basic Marking. The basic required marking “Presorted (or “PRSRT”) First-Class Package” (or “PKG”) must be printed as part of; directly below; or to the left of the postage on presorted parcels. Omit “Presorted” (or “PRSRT”) on parcels mailed in a single-piece priced mailing under 285.4.2. If a parcel mailed in a single-piece priced mailing under 285.4.2 bears the “Presorted” marking, the mailer must either:

1. Obliterate the “Presorted” marking, or

2. Print a “Single-Piece” or “SNGLP” correction marking preceded by two asterisks on a line directly above or two lines above the address in a mailer keyline or a manifest keyline.

b. Other Markings. In addition to the basic marking in 3.6a., First-Class Package Service parcels claiming commercial parcel prices must be marked as follows in a prominent location on the address side of the parcel:

1. Except for parcels with permit imprint postage, parcels claiming Commercial Base prices must be marked “Commercial Base Price” or “ComBasPrice.”

2. All parcels claiming Commercial Plus prices must be marked “Commercial Plus Price” or “ComPlsPrice.”

3.7 Parcel Select, Bound Printed Matter, Media Mail, and Library Mail Markings

3.7.1 Basic Markings

[6-2-14] The basic required marking (i.e., “Parcel Select”, “Parcel Select Lightweight”, “Bound Printed Matter”, “Media Mail”, “Library Mail”) must be printed on each piece claimed at the respective price. The basic required marking must be placed in the postage area (printed or produced as part of, or directly below or to the left of, the permit imprint indicia or meter stamp or impression). Optionally, the basic required marking may be printed on the shipping address label as service indicators composed of a service icon and service banner (see Exhibit 3.7.1):

a. The service icon that identifies the marking will be a 1-inch solid black square. If the service icon is used, it must appear in the upper left corner of the shipping label.

b. The service banner must appear directly below the postage payment area and the service icon, and it must extend across the shipping label. The appropriate marking (e.g., “PARCEL SELECT”, “PARCEL SELECT - RG”, “MEDIA MAIL”) must be preceded by the text “USPS” and be printed in minimum 20-point bold sans serif typeface, uppercase letters, centered within the banner, and bordered above and below by minimum 1-point separator lines. There must be a 1/16-inch clearance above and below the text.

Exhibit 3.7.1 Marking Indicator Examples

3.7.2 Parcel Select Markings

[6-2-14] Each piece in a Parcel Select mailing must bear a price marking. Markings must appear in either the postage area described in 3.7.1 or in the address area on the line directly above or two lines above the address if the marking appears alone (when no other information appears on that line). The “Standard Post” marking is not allowed on any Parcel Select mailpiece. The following product markings are required:

a. Destination Entry — “Parcel Select”.

b. NDC Presort — “Parcel Select NDC Presort” or “Parcel Select NDC PRSRT”

c. ONDC Presort — “Parcel Select ONDC Presort” or “Parcel Select ONDC PRSRT”.

d. Nonpresort — “Parcel Select Nonpresort” or “Parcel Select NPS”.

e. Lightweight — “Parcel Select Lightweight” or “PS Lightweight”.

3.7.3 Bound Printed Matter Markings

[6-2-14] In addition to the basic marking “Bound Printed Matter” or “BPM,” each piece of Bound Printed Matter mailed at a presorted or carrier route price must bear additional price markings. The additional markings may be placed in the postage area as specified in 3.7.1. Alternatively, these markings may be placed in the address area on the line directly above or two lines above the address if the marking appears alone, or if no other information appears on the line with the marking except postal optional endorsement line information under 708.7.0 or postal carrier route bundle information under 708.6.0. The additional price markings are:

a. For Presorted price mail, the additional required marking is “Presorted” (or “PRSRT”). For presorted flats claiming the barcode discount prepared under 265.7.0 , the optional marking “AUTO” may be used in place of “Presorted” (or “PRSRT”). If the “AUTO” marking is not used, the automation price flats must bear the “Presorted” (or “PRSRT”) price marking.

b. For carrier route price mail, the additional required marking is “Carrier Route Presort” (or “CAR-RT SORT”).

3.7.4 Address and Firm Designation on Bound Printed Matter Machinable Parcels

[6-2-14] When a Bound Printed Matter machinable parcel consists of multiple pieces for a single address secured with transparent shrinkwrap, the delivery address information and barcoded pressure-sensitive Label F or firm optional endorsement line must be visible and readable by the naked eye. Mailers must label the parcel using one of the following options:

a. A firm optional endorsement line under 708.7.0, followed by the 5-digit destination ZIP Code of the parcel.

b. A blue, pressure-sensitive, barcoded Label F on the address side of the parcel.

3.7.5 Media Mail and Library Mail Markings

[6-2-14] Each piece of Media Mail or Library Mail mailed at a presorted price must bear the required marking “Presorted” or “PRSRT” in addition to the basic marking “Media Mail” or “Library Mail,” as applicable. This additional marking may be placed in the postage area specified in 3.7.1. Alternatively, these markings may be placed in the address area on the line directly above or two lines above the address if the marking appears alone or if no other information appears on the line with the marking except postal optional endorsement line information under 708.7.0.

3.8 Exceptions to Markings

[6-2-14] Exceptions are as follows:

a. Automation Letters and Flats. Automation letters and flats do not require an “AUTO” marking if they bear an Intelligent Mail barcode with a delivery point routing code in the address block or on an insert visible through a window. First-Class Mail letters not marked “AUTO” must bear both the “Presorted” or “PRSRT” and “First-Class” markings. Standard Mail letters not marked “AUTO” must bear the appropriate basic marking in 3.5a..

b. Manifest Mailings. The basic marking must appear in the postage area on each piece as required in 3.5a.. The two-letter price category code, printed in the keyline on manifest mailing system pieces using batch processing under 705.2.0, meets the requirement for other price markings when those pieces are part of a manifest mailing or another automation mailing. If a single-piece marking (“SP”) has been applied to pieces that subsequently become part of a presorted or automation mailing, the “SP” marking must be marked out and replaced with a “Presorted” or “PRSRT” marking. Mail manifested using the Electronic Verification System (eVS) under 705.2.0 must bear the basic marking and the additional marking “eVS” (or the alternative “e-VS” or “EVS”) in two places:

1. In the required permit imprint as described in 604.5.0.

2. In the human-readable text above the required barcode described in 705.2.9 and 708.5.0.

c. MLOCR Prepared Automation Mailings. The basic marking must appear in the postage area on each piece as required in 3.5a.. The other “AUTO” marking described in 3.5b. must be replaced by the appropriate identifier/price code marking described in 705.5.0, on those pieces that have the marking applied by an MLOCR. This seven-character marking provides a description of the Product Month Designator, NCOALink MPE system identifier, postage payment method, and the price of affixed postage or other postage information for permit imprint mail.

3.9 Marking Hazardous Materials

All mailable hazardous materials must be labeled and/or marked as required in 601.9.0.

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4.0 Placement and Physical Standards for Endorsements

4.1 Endorsements for Delivery Instructions and Ancillary Services

[6-2-14] The mailer must place the correct endorsement on each mailpiece to provide delivery instructions (retention period under 507.4.3.4, or carrier release under 4.3c.) or to request an ancillary service (forwarding, return, or address correction under 507.1.0), subject to the corresponding standards for use and availability.

4.2 Return Address

When a printed ancillary service endorsement is used, or a request is embedded within an Intelligent Mail barcode, a domestic return address must be placed in the upper left corner of the address side of the mailpiece or the upper left corner of the addressing area. If the return address is a multiple delivery address, it must show a unit designator (e.g., an apartment number).

4.3 Placement of Endorsement

[6-2-14] Placement of the endorsement on the mailpiece is determined as follows:

a. A retention period specified by the mailer must be placed directly above the return address.

b. Any ancillary service endorsement (e.g., Address Service Requested, Forwarding Service Requested, Return Service Requested, Change Service Requested) must be placed in one of these four positions:

1. Directly below the return address.

2. Directly above the delivery address area (which includes the delivery address block and any related nonaddress elements such as a barcode, keyline, or optional endorsement line).

3. Directly to the left of the postage area and below or to the left of any price marking.

4. Directly below the postage area and below any price marking.

c. The carrier release endorsement “CARRIER—LEAVE IF NO RESPONSE” must appear directly to the left of the postage area (preferred) or placed directly below the return address. A minimum 1/4 inch clear space must appear between any other printing and the carrier release endorsement. If an ancillary service endorsement is used, the carrier release endorsement must be separated from the ancillary service endorsement by the equivalent of one blank line of the type size used.

4.4 Physical Standards for Endorsements

The endorsement or, if combined, endorsements must meet these physical standards:

a. The type size of the endorsement must be at least 8 points.

b. The read direction of the endorsement and return address must be the same as the read direction of the delivery address.

c. The color contrast between the endorsement and the mailpiece background must be kept at a reasonable degree. A brilliant colored background or reverse printing is not permitted.

d. A clear space of at least 1/4 inch around (above, below, and both sides) the total area containing the endorsement(s) is required. This 1/4-inch clear space is not required for an endorsement that is applied with a multiline optical character reader (MLOCR) inkjet and placed in the location directly below the postage area and any price marking if the endorsement is clear and legible.

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5.0 Barcode Placement Letters and Flats

5.1 Letter-Size

5.1.1 Barcode Clear Zone

[6-2-14] Each reference to letter or letter-size piece in 5.0 includes both letters and postcards. Each letter-size piece in an automation price or an Enhanced Carrier Route mailing at automation letter prices must have a barcode clear zone unless the piece bears an Intelligent Mail barcode with a delivery point routing code (see 708.4.3) in the address block. The barcode clear zone and all printing and material in the clear zone must meet the reflectance standards in 708.4.4. The barcode clear zone is a rectangular area in the lower right corner of the address side of cards and letter-size pieces defined by these boundaries:

a. Left: 4-3/4 inches from the right edge of the piece.

b. Right: right edge of the piece.

c. Top: 5/8 inch from the bottom edge of the piece.

d. Bottom: bottom edge of the piece.

5.1.2 General Barcode Placement for Letters

Each automation price letter and each letter claimed at Enhanced Carrier Route automation saturation or high density letter prices must bear an Intelligent Mail barcode with a correct delivery point routing code. A nonautomation letter may bear an Intelligent Mail barcode or a POSTNET barcode, under 708.4.0. Mailers must print the barcode either in the address block or in the barcode clear zone, except for pieces that weigh more than 3 ounces which must include the barcode in the address block. See 5.1.4 when placing barcodes in the address block.

5.1.3 Barcode on a Mailpiece

Except as noted for 5-digit barcodes in 5.1.5, if the barcode is printed directly on the mailpiece in the lower right corner, the entire barcode must be within the barcode read area defined by these limits:

a. Horizontally, the leftmost bar must be between 3-1/2 inches and 4-1/4 inches from the right edge of the piece.

b. Vertically, the barcode must be within the area between 3/16 inch and 1/2 inch, both measured from the bottom edge of the piece.

5.1.4 Additional Barcode Permissibility

An automation letter or a letter claimed at Enhanced Carrier Route saturation or high density automation letter prices may not bear a POSTNET barcode or a 5-digit or ZIP+4 Intelligent Mail barcode in the lower right corner (barcode clear zone). The piece may bear a POSTNET barcode or an additional Intelligent Mail barcode in the address block only if a qualifying Intelligent Mail barcode with a delivery point routing code appears in the lower right corner. The ZIP+4 barcode may appear in the address block when printed on an insert that appears through a window or on an address label affixed directly to the piece; or it may appear in the lower right corner either printed directly on the mailpiece or on an insert that appears through a window.

5.1.5 5-Digit Barcode Placement in Clear Zone

Any 5-digit barcode must be located as specified in 5.1.4, except that, if placed in the barcode clear zone, the leftmost bar of the barcode must be between 4-1/8 and 4-1/4 inches from the right edge of the mailpiece.

5.2 Flat-Size

5.2.1 Barcode Placement for Flats

[6-2-14] On any flat-size piece claimed at automation prices, the piece must bear an Intelligent Mail barcode with a delivery point routing code. The barcode may be anywhere on the address side as long as it is at least 1/8 inch from any edge of the piece. The portion of the surface of the piece on which the barcode is printed must meet the barcode dimensions and spacing requirements in 708.4.2.5, and the reflectance standards in 708.4.4. Intelligent Mail barcodes are subject to standards in 708.4.3.2. A POSTNET barcode or an additional Intelligent Mail barcode may also appear in the address block of an automation flat, when the qualifying Intelligent Mail barcode is not in the address block. Other non-USPS barcodes may appear on the address side of a flat if the barcode format is not discernable to automated postal flat-sorting equipment.

5.2.2 Delivery Point Routing Code Numeric Equivalent

[6-2-14] In automation mailings only, the numbers corresponding to the delivery point routing code may appear in the delivery address. If read from left to right: a correct numeric equivalent consists of five digits, a hyphen, and six digits.

5.3 Barcode in Address Block

When the barcode is included as part of the address block:

a. The barcode must be placed in one of these positions:

1. Above the address line containing the recipient’s name.

2. Below the city, state, and ZIP Code line.

3. Above or below the keyline information.

4. Above or below the optional endorsement line.

b. The printing of the barcode is prohibited anywhere between the address line containing the recipient’s name and the city, state, and ZIP Code line.

c. The minimum clearance between the Intelligent Mail barcode and any information line above or below it within the address block must be at least 0.028 inch. The separation between the barcode and top line or bottom line of the address block must not exceed 0.625 (5/8) inch. The clearance between the leftmost and rightmost bars and any adjacent printing must be at least 0.125 (1/8) inch.

d. If a window envelope is used, the clearance between the leftmost and rightmost bars and any printing or window edge must be at least 0.125 (1/8) inch. The clearance between the Intelligent Mail barcode and the top and bottom window edges must be at least 0.028 inch. These clearances must be maintained during the insert's range of movement in the envelope. Address block windows on heavy letter mail must be covered. Covers for address block windows are subject to 5.7.

e. If an address label is used, a clear space of at least 0.125 (1/8) inch must be left between the barcode and the left and right edges of the address label. The clearance between the Intelligent Mail barcode and the top and bottom edges of the address label must be at least 0.028 inch.

f. The rightmost bar must be at least 1/2 inch from the right edge of the mailpiece, and the leftmost bar must be less than 10-1/2 inches from the right edge of the mailpiece and at least 1/2 inch from the left edge of the mailpiece; the top of each bar must be less than 4 inches from the bottom edge of the mailpiece; and the bottom line of the address block, including the barcode, must be at least 5/8 inch from the bottom of the mailpiece.

5.4 Barcode on Insert in Barcode Window

If the barcode is printed on an insert to appear through a barcode window in the lower right corner of an envelope:

a. The envelope and window must meet the physical standards in 5.6 and 5.7.

b. The entire barcode must be within the barcode clear zone (but need not be completely within the barcode read area).

c. When the insert showing through the window is moved to any of its limits inside the envelope, the entire barcode must remain within the barcode clear zone. In addition, a clear space must be maintained that is at least 0.125 (1/8) inch between the barcode and the left and right edges of the window, at least 0.1875 (3/16) inch between the barcode and the bottom edge of the mailpiece, and at least 0.028 inch between the barcode and the top edge of the window.

5.5 Edges of Barcode Window

The edges of the barcode window must meet these criteria:

a. Left: at least 4-3/4 inches from the right edge of the envelope.

b. Right: at least 1/4 inch from the right edge of the envelope.

c. Top: at least 5/8 inch from the bottom of the envelope.

d. Bottom: form part of the bottom edge of the envelope.

5.6 Window Construction

A barcode window must extend fully to the bottom edge of the envelope, must be of wraparound construction, and must be covered subject to 5.7.

5.7 Window Cover

The window cover must be of a nontinted clear or transparent material (e.g., cellophane or polystyrene) that permits the barcode and its background, as viewed through the window material, to meet the reflectance standards in 708.4.4. The edges of the window cover must be securely glued to the envelope.

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6.0 Barcode Placement for Parcels

6.1 GS1-128 Routing Barcode or Intelligent Mail Package Barcode Location

[6-2-14] The address and barcode (see 708.5.0) must be placed squarely onto the largest surface area of the parcel, except when its shape and contents requires specific orientation for stability during processing; then the address and barcode(s) must be placed on the top. The address and barcode label(s) must not overlap any side of the parcel or other label. The barcode should be placed immediately adjacent to the delivery address and at least 1 inch from the edge of the parcel. The delivery address and barcode may be printed on an attachment or enclosure in a window envelope affixed to the parcel, subject to the reflectance standards in 708.5.2.8. The barcode may be placed on a separate label or in an alternate location on the address label, subject to the clearance standards in 6.2. Barcodes that are not placed immediately adjacent to the delivery address must not encroach the return address, postage, applicable markings, endorsements, and extra service labels. Intelligent Mail package barcodes (see 708.5.0) may be used in lieu of GS1-128 routing barcodes, following the same placement standards.

6.2 Clear Zone for GS1-128 Routing Barcode or Intelligent Mail Package Barcode

[6-2-14] The barcode must be located as specified in 6.1. No printing may appear in an area 1/8 inch above and below the barcode. A minimum clear (quiet) zone equal to 10 times the average measured narrow element (bars or space) width must be maintained to the left and right of the barcode.

6.3 Intelligent Mail Barcodes and POSTNET Barcodes

[6-2-14] Intelligent Mail barcodes and POSTNET barcodes do not meet barcode eligibility requirements for parcels and do not qualify for any barcode-related prices for parcels, but one barcode may be included only in the address block on a parcel, except on eVS parcels. An Intelligent Mail barcode or POSTNET barcode in the address block must be placed according to 5.3.

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7.0 Repositionable Notes (RPNs)

7.1 Use

[7-28-14] RPNs must meet all of the following standards:

a. RPNs may be attached to letter- and flat-size commercial First-Class Mail, Standard Mail, and Periodicals mailpieces.

b. For letter-size mailpieces, attach a single RPN to the address side of the mailpiece as specified in Exhibit 7.1b.

Exhibit 7.1b Placing RPNs on Letters

c. For flat-size mailpieces, a single RPN may be attached to either the address side or nonaddress side of the mailpiece and attached in the locations described and shown in Exhibit 7.3g1 and Exhibit 7.3g2.

d. RPNs are included as an integral part of the mailpiece for weight and postage price computation purposes.

e. The written and graphic characteristics of the notes are considered when determining eligibility of mailpieces mailed at the Standard Mail and Nonprofit Standard Mail prices.

f. Attach the RPNs to all pieces in the mailing.

7.2 Mailpiece Characteristics

[7-28-14] Each mailpiece must:

a. Not be in a plastic wrapper (e.g., polybag, polywrap, or shrinkwrap).

b. Be letter-size (including cards) or flat-size.

7.3 RPN Characteristics

[7-28-14] RPNs must:

a. Measure 3 inches by 3 inches, plus or minus 1/8 inch for either dimension.

b. Not contain phosphorescent or red fluorescent colorants.

c. Be adhered with a minimum of 3/4 inch (with a tolerance of 1/16 inch) adhesive strip across the top portion on the reverse side of the note.

d. Not be placed in a manner that interferes with the delivery address, price markings, or postage and must not display a specific address or ZIP Code. References to general landmarks are permissible.

e. Not be manually affixed.

f. On letter-size mailpieces:

1. Position the RPN parallel with the length of the mailpiece.

2. Affix RPNs with labeling equipment to ensure adequate adhesion; do not affix RPNs manually.

3. Place the RPN to the left of the delivery address, no closer than 3/8 inch from the left edge of the delivery address.

4. Place the RPN at least 1/2 inch (with a tolerance of 1/8 inch) from the bottom and left edges of the mailpiece.

g. On flat-size mailpieces:

1. If the RPN is placed on the address side of the mailpiece, position the RPN according to Exhibit 7.3g1.

Exhibit 7.3g1 Placing RPNs on Flats—Address Side

2. If the RPN is placed on the nonaddressed side of the mailpiece, position the RPN according to Exhibit 7.3g2.

Exhibit 7.3g2 Placing RPNs on Flats—Nonaddress Side

7.4 RPNs on Automation-Price Mailpieces

7.4.1 Letter-Size Mailpieces

[7-28-14] Letter-size mailpieces with RPNs claiming automation prices must meet the standards in 7.1 through 7.3, 201.3.0, and the following additional standards:

a. Each mailpiece must be rectangular and have a surface smoothness of 195 Shefield Units or smoother.

b. Enveloped mailpieces. Each mailpiece prepared in an envelope must be constructed from paperstock having a basis weight of 20 pounds or greater. Window envelopes must have a closed panel made of polystyrene or glassine. Each enveloped mailpiece is limited to the following dimensions:

1. For height, no less than 4-1/8 inches and no more than 6 inches high.

2. For length, no less than 8 inches and no more than 9-1/2 inches long.

3. For thickness, no less than 0.02 inch and no more than 0.125 inch thick.

c. Oversize cards. Each mailpiece prepared as an oversize card is limited to the following dimensions:

1. For height, no less than 4-1/2 inches and no more than 6 inches high.

2. For length, no less than 8-1/2 inches and no more than 9 inches long.

3. For thickness, no less than 0.009 inch thick (cards 5-3/4 inches or more in height must be no less than 0.012 inch thick.)

7.4.2 Flat-Size Mailpieces

[7-28-14] Flat-size mailpieces with RPNs claiming automation prices must meet the standards in 1.0 through 3.0 and 201.3.0.

7.5 Prices

[7-28-14] See Notice 123—Price List.

7.6 Compliance

[7-28-14] Mailers must comply as follows:

a. RPNs must be obtained from an approved RPN vendor (see www.usps.com for a listing of approved vendors). Prospective vendors can obtain USPS standards and test procedures from USPS Engineering (see 608.8.0 for address). Testing must be performed by a certified independent laboratory.

b. Mailers must present evidence at the time of mailing to show that their RPNs have been supplied by an approved vendor. The vendor name on the reverse side of the note will be sufficient as evidence; in lieu of the vendor name printed on the notes, an invoice from the approved vendor for purchase of the RPNs will constitute such evidence.

c. As part of each mailing, mailers must include two pieces addressed to the manager, USPS Engineering Letter Technology, Attn: RPN Sample (see 608.8.0 for address).