What Is Certified Mail?

The United States Postal Service delivers and processes about 173 million pieces of first-class mail every day.

Businesses and individuals don’t have a shortage of mailing options. You can use any of the options offered by USPS. You can send items via first-class mail, Priority Mail, or marketing mail.

Another option offered by the postal service is certified mail.

Should you use certified mail? How does it differ from the other mailing solutions? You don’t need to get confused by so many mailing options.

Keep reading to find out what certified mail is and when you should use it.

What Is Certified Mail?

Certified mail is a mailing service that’s available only in the United States. You place a mailing label on the envelope or package.

The mailing label has an assigned tracking number. You keep a portion of the mailing label as proof of sending.

Here’s why certified mail is important: you get tracking information that shows if an item was delivered or if an attempt was made.

Certified mail is legal proof that someone received delivery of an item.

It’s used for legal and sensitive items. For example, the IRS sends important letters to taxpayers via certified mail.

A taxpayer can’t say, “I didn’t get it.”

Certified mail gives the IRS legal proof that the person did receive the letter.

These get used in collections matters, sending important documents, and at times you want proof of receipt.

How much does certified mail cost? It costs more than other mailing options, but for the security and legal protection it offers, it’s worth it. Certified mail costs $3.75 per mailing, plus postage.

Additional Certified Mail Services

The postal service offers other services in addition to certified mail. You may use these if you have age restrictions or very sensitive information.

Restricted delivery lets you deliver mail only to the intended recipient. Someone else can’t sign for the item on their behalf.

If you need to have an adult sign for an item, use the Adult Signature Required option. Only someone 21 years or older can accept the item.

Adult signature restricted delivery combines the two mailing services into one option. Use this if you need a specific person over 21 to accept the item.

How to Send Certified Mail

It’s very simple to send an item certified mail. Go to the post office, find one of those green certified mailing labels, and stick it on the package.

Be sure to fill out the label information completely so you have a record of what you sent.

You’ll stand in line for a while, pay, and send the item off.

There’s a faster and less expensive alternative. There are tools that let you print certified mail labels online. You just print and send without the trip to the post office.

Certified Mail Is One of the Best Mailing Options

Certified mail lets you track your mail and it gives you legal proof that someone received a letter. The different certified mailing options ensure your mail reaches the intended recipient.

Do you want more great ideas for your business? Check out the other articles on the blog today.