USPS Missing Mail Search

Does USPS Missing Mail Search Work?

Every year, the United States Postal Service manages billions of mail items. Most mail reaches its destination without a problem but some mail can go missing during their journey.

USPS Missing Mail Search

When this happens, customers get concerned. So, how does USPS assist customers when they need help?

USPS Missing Mail Search is a service provided by USPS. It helps customers locate and recover their First Class Mail or any type of mail that went missing while being sent.

Stay with us as we share steps to find your lost USPS mail and other important information about USPS Missing Mail Search.

How Long Does USPS Missing Mail Search Take?

You usually need to wait for at least 7 days from when it was sent before making a request to ask USPS to find a lost package.

The table below captures how long it takes USPS to search for missing mail:

Mail ClassDelivery StandardGuaranteed Delivery  Submit a Missing Mail Search Request
First Class Mail1, 2, or 3 days No 7 or more days from the date of mailing
First Class Package Service                 1, 2, or 3 days  No7 or more days from the date of mailing
Priority Mail          1, 2, or 3 days No                  7 or more days from the date of mailing
Priority Mail Express               1 or 2 days     Yes   When Guaranteed Delivery Date/Time is Missed
USPS Retail Ground     2 to 8 days     No                 14 or more days from the date of mailing
Parcel Select Ground                2 to 8 days     No   14 or more days from the date of mailing
Media Mail              2 to 8 days  No 14 or more days from the date of mailing


What Should I Do if My Mail is Missing?

It’s always important to you and the USPS when you send or receive mail. If your mail is missing, you can follow the steps below:

1. Check the Current Status

Make sure to use USPS Tracking if your mail or package has a tracking number.

This will inform you about the current status of your mail or package.

2. Complete a Help Request Form

The request form is the first step to let your local Post Office be aware of the issue and begin the search process.

Complete an online assistance request form using either a desktop computer or a mobile phone.

3. Submit a Missing Mail Search Request

If, after waiting for 7 business days from your online help request submission, your mail or package remains missing, it’s time to submit a Missing Mail search request.

Provide the following details:

  • Sender’s mailing address
  • Recipient’s mailing address
  • Size and type of container or envelope used
  • Identifying information, such as USPS Tracking number(s), mailing date from your receipt, or Click-N-Ship label receipt
  • A detailed description of the contents, including its nature, brand, model, color, or size, if applicable
  • Include any pictures that might assist in identifying your item

4. USPS Mail Search

USPS will send you an email to confirm they got it after you submit your Missing Mail search request. If your package or mail is located, they will be sent to the address provided.

However, it’s essential to know that there are situations where they may not be able to find or send missing mail due to safety concerns.

5. Additional Information

You can request a refund when using a service like Priority Mail Express, which has a money-back guarantee.

Begin a claim quickly if you notice damaged or missing contents. Make sure it is done no later than 60 days from the mailing date.

What’s the USPS Mail Recovery Center?

The USPS Mail Recovery Center serves as a central hub for lost mail and packages. When items arrive, they are inspected.

If a package or envelope is considered valuable (worth more than $25 in stuff or over $20 in cash), USPS workers will open it to try to send it back to the sender or recipient.

Mail with a barcode is stored for 60 days, while mail without a barcode is kept for 30 days. After this period, items may be donated, discarded, recycled, or auctioned.

Possible Causes of Lost USPS Packages

There are several potential reasons why USPS packages may become lost:

1. Incorrect Address

Delivering the package to the wrong location is certain if the sender provides an incomplete or wrong address, or if there is a mistake during data entry.

2. Illegible Label

An unclear and damaged label can also contribute to your package being lost in transit. It is also advised you use a clear label to avoid this issue.

3. Weather or Natural Disasters

Severe weather conditions, like storms, hurricanes, or floods, can disrupt normal postal operations and lead to losses.

4. Stolen Package

Thieves can sometimes steal packages during transit or after delivery.

5. High Package Volume

This issue can also arise during peak seasons or holidays. When there is a rush in package volume, there may be a higher likelihood of processing errors or delays.

Tips to Prevent Lost USPS Packages

USPS Missing Mail Search

There are valuable tips to help you avoid the frustration of lost packages:

1. Confirm Address

Always take a moment to confirm the recipient’s address, especially if they live in a shared space. An accurate address is needed to ensure successful delivery.

2. Consider Extra Insurance

Consider purchasing additional insurance if you’re shipping expensive items like jewelry or electronics. This gives you added protection in case anything goes wrong during transit.

3. Track Packages

Enable tracking notifications for your shipments. With the notification, you were informed about the package’s location and time of delivery.

4. Use Inner Labels

Include labels inside the package in addition to the outer label. This is helpful in case the outer label becomes damaged or unreadable during transit.

5. Secure Labeling

Do well to write the address clearly and legibly when labeling. Strong tape covers and prevents labels from getting damaged during handling and transportation.

USPS Missing Mail Search ensures the safe delivery of your mail. It helps locate and recover your missing items if your mail is lost or delayed.

USPS is committed to resolving any mail-related issues you may encounter, so you can have the peace you want.

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