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No More Paper Postage Statements!

December 19, 2023

(starting January 28, 2024)
By Lisa Leslie
Strategic Account Manager
BCC Software, a BlueCrest Company

The proposal to discontinue hardcopy postage statements was published on February 13, 2023 (88 FR 9218-9221). The final rule was published in the Federal Register Notice (FRN) on 4/25/2023, with an effective date of Sunday, January 28, 2024.

I’ll review the rule, along with comments/concerns raised during the process, and the responses provided by the Postal Service. Finally, I’ll provide suggestions to help move to electronic submissions, as many mailers still use paper statements. Moving to eDocs will ultimately save time, improve operational efficiency, and will allow your most valuable resources to spend time on higher-end tasks.

ELECTRONIC SUBMISSIONS: WHAT’S INCLUDED VS. EXCLUDED

    • All domestic mailing claiming a discount and all permit imprint mailings must be accompanied by a completed electronic postage statement.
      o All metered and permit imprint mailings of 50 pieces or more (except for the exclusions noted below), must be accompanied by a completed postage statement.
      o The mailer’s electronic confirmation during eDoc submission certifies that the Move Update standard has been met for the address records, including each address in the corresponding mailing presented to the Postal Service.

    • Exclusions:
      o Mail manifested using eVS
      o Every Door Direct Mail-Retail® (EDDM-R®)
      o International mailings

COMMENTS AND RESPONSES

COMMENTS AND RESPONSES

    • Comment: Eliminating hardcopy postage statements would make it so we cannot submit bulk mailings any longer.
      Response: Postal Wizard® and Intelligent Mail® Small Business Tool (IMsb) are free and simple electronic documentation solutions available on the Business Customer Gateway (BCG). Also, third-party software and mail preparation options are also available on the PostalPro website (BCC Software offers a host of mailing solutions that can help – ask me how!). Also, all BMEU employees are trained to assist in the transition to eDoc submissions.

    • Comment: Eliminating hardcopy postage statements will create an issue for mailers who mail non-identical pieces and must submit a hardcopy manifest.

    • Response: Postal Wizard is free electronic documentation software available on the BCG. It allows for non-identical pieces (as do many third-party options listed on PostalPro). The hardcopy manifest that must accompany such a mailing will still be accepted. This FRN only covers postage statements and does not prohibit hardcopy manifests.

    • Comment: I do not have a computer and cannot submit my postage statement electronically.

    • Response: BMEUs where you currently bring your hardcopy statement will assist you with submitting a statement electronically.

    • Comment: The transition period should be continued through 2025.

    • Response: Local BMEUs have been encouraging mailers to transition to electronic documentation for several years. Official notice was provided 11 months prior to this transition. Also, there are free and easy options to submit electronic documentation. As such, the Postal Service believes January 2024 is sufficient time for hardcopy mailers to transfer.

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