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Mail Services

Mail Preparation


Optical Character Reader

Each piece of mail passes by the computer’s scanner for a quick read of the delivery address. Then the OCR’s printer sprays on a delivery point barcode for that address. Next, the mail piece zooms on to one of the OCR’s sorting channels reserved for the proper delivery area. From there, the bar-coded mail is fed to Basks for the fast final separations – right down to the letter carriers who deliver it.

The OCR is easily confused by sloppy handwriting, highly stylized characters, extraneous printing, and incorrectly placed address information

The OCR reads the mail piece from bottom to top, left to right. The bottom line of the mail piece must be the City, State and Zip, anything else and the mail piece will be ejected and all discounts will be lost.

View graphic of dimensions marked on an envelope

View letter-size mail dimensional standards template

Address Lines

Keep address lines in the same order as shown in the illustration below. Make sure the address is as complete as possible. Including all apartment or suite numbers and proper deliver designations such as RD, ST, NW and S.

Address Characters

Capitalize everything, using plain block letters or a sans serif typeface such as Helvetica or Arial. Omit all punctuation, except for the hyphen in the ZIP+4 code. Use abbreviations whenever possible.

Spacing

The OCR must see a clear vertical space between each character and each word or it won’t know where one ends and the next begins. It also needs a clear horizontal space between each line of the address. Clear spaces between each line of the address. Clear spaces between words should be at least equal to the width of one full-size character, like the capital “M.”

Barcode Area

The barcode area must remain free of all printing, markings, or colored borders and allow for a clean display of the barcode. The barcode area is the lower 5/8” and the right 3.5 inches of the mail piece.

Foreign Addresses

Foreign mailings should have the country name, printed in capital letters, as the only information on the bottom line. The postal zone, if any, should be included with the city, for example:

MR. THOMAS CLARK
117 RUSSELL DRIVE
LONDON W1P6HQ
ENGLAND

Dual Addressing

When a post office box number and a street address are used, make sure that the place where you want the mail delivered appears on the line immediately above the city, state, and ZIP Code line and that the ZIP Code or ZIP+4 code corresponds to that address.

Joe E. Printer
Printing Services
G001 Eaton Mail Stop 2016
3901 Rainbow Boulevard
Kansas City, KS 66160-7148

Addressing Tips

Write, type, or print the complete address neatly
Always use a return address [ Find your KUMC Mail Stop Code]
Always use complete address information, such as the suffixes AVE, BLVD, and ST. Always include locators such as the apartment or suite number.
Always use correct directionals, such as N, NW and SW.
Use correct Zip+4. The Postal Service Web site is www.usps.gov, offers ZIP Code information.
Always use the two-letter state abbreviations.
Use common addressing abbreviations.

If you have questions concerning how to mail a piece, please contact Mail Services, and one of our staff will be more than happy to offer suggestions

Ancillary Service Endorsements

Ancillary service endorsements are used by mailers to request an addressee’s new address and to provide the SUPS with instructions on how to handle undeliverable-as-addressed pieces. The endorsements consists of one keyword, “Address”, ”Return”, or “Change”, followed by the two words “Service Requested” The endorsements are the same for all classes of mail, but the treatment and cost differ by class of mail. Use of the ancillary service endorsement on a mail piece obligates the mailer to pay any applicable charges for forwarding, return, and separate address notification charges.

An endorsement must be printed in no smaller than 8-point type, and must stand out clearly against its background. There must be a ¼ -inch clear space around (above, below, and both sides) the endorsement. The endorsement and return address must read in the same direction as the delivery address.

View graphic of ancillary service endorsement locations

Mailer Endorsement

Address Service Requested
Forwarding and return. New address notification provided
Months 1 through 12: mail piece forwarded; separate notice provided; address correction fee charged.
Months 13 through 18: mail piece returned with new address attached.
After 18 months or if undeliverable at any time: mail piece returned with reason for nondelivery attached.

Return Service Requested
Not forwarding, only return. New address notification provided.
Mail piece returned with new address or reason for nondelivery attached.

Change Service Requested
No forwarding or return. New address notification provided. Separate notice of new address or reason for nondelivery provided; mail piece disposed of by SUPS.

Forwarding Service Requested
Forwarding and return. New address notification provided only with return.
Months 1 through 12; mail piece forwarded.
Months 13 through 18: mail piece returned with new address attached.
After 18 months or if undeliverable at any time: mail piece returned with reason for nondelivery attached.