Quick Service Guide 505
April 7, 2014
For an annual permit fee, a Business Reply Mail (BRM) permit is available for distributing business reply cards, envelopes, self-mailers, and labels for envelopes. Business Reply Mail (BRM) service enables a permit holder to receive First-Class Mail and Priority Mail back from customers and pay postage and a per piece fee for only the pieces returned.. BRM cards, envelopes, self-mailers, flats, and labels may be distributed by a BRM permit holder in any quantity for return to any Post Office in the United States and its territories and possessions, including military Post Offices overseas. The BRM permit holder guarantees payment of First-Class Mail postage plus a per piece charge for pieces returned by the USPS (see payment options below). Effective January 26, 2014, only card-, letter- and flat-sized pieces are eligible for BRM service. BRM permit holders who routinely receive parcel-shaped BRM returns will be required to discontinue this practice and to transition to MRS or a USPS Returns product for their parcel returns. The Postal Service will provide a 12-month transitional period until January 25, 2015, to allow mailers to obtain a MRS or USPS Returns permit.
When designing a BRM mailpiece or label, mailers must consult with their local Post Office. The piece must conform to a specific format to qualify as BRM, including a unique ZIP+4 Code, or equivalent Intelligent Mail or POSTNET barcodes assigned by the USPS. Proofs for regular BRM should be approved by the USPS before printing. Proofs for Qualified Business Reply Mail (QBRM) must be approved by the USPS and must bear an Intelligent Mail barcode (IMb). On page two is a layout example for a BRM envelope. For reusable envelopes using BRM with two-way indicia, see 601.6.6.4 for requirements.
BRM pieces distributed in automation mailings are required to meet automation compatibility standards. BRM templates are available on the Postal Explorer Web site at pe.usps.com by selecting “Mailpiece Design” in the left frame.
Basic BRM—Annual permit fee applies.
Per piece charge in addition to the First-Class Mail or Priority Mail postage. Paid through an advance deposit account or by cash/check on delivery.
Best suited for BRM customers with fewer than 935 returned BRM pieces expected annually, or any type (postcards, letters, etc.).
High-Volume BRM—Annual permit fee plus a BRM annual account maintenance fee for each account at each delivery unit.
Basic Qualified Business Reply Mail (QBRM)—Annual permit fee plus a BRM annual account maintenance fee.
Used only on barcoded automation-compatible cards and letter-size mail weighing up to 2 ounces if design is approved for QBRM by USPS before distribution (505.1.3). A unique ZIP+4 code is assigned by the USPS for each price category of QBRM to be returned (one for card-price pieces, one for letter-size pieces weighing 1 ounce or less, and one for letter-size pieces weighing over 1 ounce up to 2 ounces).
High-Volume QBRM—Annual permit fee, a BRM annual account maintenance fee, and a separate quarterly fee. Mailers can pay quarterly fee for any consecutive 3-calendar-month period.
Best suited if QBRM customer’s return volume is approximately 168,148 pieces or more annually or 42,037 pieces or more quarterly.
Other Post Offices
A BRM permit holder can allow its authorized representatives or agents to use that permit number to receive BRM at any Post Office. The original permit holder must supply the representative with a letter authorizing the use of the BRM permit and a copy of the USPS receipt showing the annual fee payment for that permit. See 505.1.11 for additional requirements.