USPS Begins Reclaiming Funds for Move Update Violations

A U.S. Postal Service official said last week that the agency has started reclaiming postage discounts from First-Class mailers who do not comply with its Move Update rules.

Angelo Wider, USPS manager of finance administration, said that for much of last year the USPS reviewed mailings but usually gave mailers a chance to make the correction before reclaiming any discounts.

“We have communicated and made presentations about [the program] to industry groups and have given enough forewarning, and now is the time to put the stake in the sand and start following up on this,” Wider said. “We've been generous with the grace period, in part because we had to train our own people and do internal controls. But now we are moving ahead. If mailers get busted, they are going to have to ante up.”

The reclaimed discounts will be only for the portion of mailings not in compliance. The decision follows tests in 2002 that revealed some mailers did not use Move Update properly.

Under Move Update, which is designed to reduce undeliverable-as-addressed mail, mailers using automation or presort rates are required to update addresses every 180 days using the Address Change Service, National Change of Address, FastForward or other USPS-approved method.

In other news, the USPS said that the first phase of its Postal Automated Redirection System deployment would begin this month. Using new and enhanced automation equipment and recognition technology, PARS will identify and intercept undeliverable-as-addressed letters earlier in the sorting process and automatically redirect them to the correct addresses.

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