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Mail Processing Information

Mail processing requirements, procedures and instructions are listed below, sorted by mail type. Rates and prices for mail services can be found on the Processing Rates page.

ALERT: Do you use Business Reply Mail? If so, please review our announcement on the new process for obtaining envelope barcodes from the United States Postal Service. More details (PDF).

Note: Changes to postal rates scheduled for April 2015 have been delayed. For more details on this delay, see the Processing Rates page.


General Mail Processing Requirements

  • Mail must face the same direction; that is, all addresses must be on the same side in the bundle and have the same vertical orientation. See sample image.
  • Material must not stick out of the envelope.
  • Mail that is to be metered at Admin Central Mail must be grouped and bundled according to price and size. Smallest on top and largest on the bottom. DO NOT MIX POSTCARDS INTO THE BUNDLE.
  • All two-ounce standard size envelopes less than .1875 inch (3/16 inch) can be sealed by Admin Central Mail equipment. However, the envelopes must be feathered with flaps pointing perpendicular. See sample image.
  • Glossy or "shiny" mail cannot be metered. For guidelines or a price to process glossy mail, call 651-296-6802.
  • Interoffice mail must be separated from mail to be metered. 

General Mail Processing Procedures

  • Except for one-ounce first class letters, all mail must be weighed and marked with a price in the upper right hand corner of the bundle. Mail must be divided and bundled according to type (i.e. first class, third class, registered, etc.)
  • All mail must be sealed, except for one and two-ounce letters with a thickness of 3/16 inch or less.
  • All mail to be metered MUST have the agency barcode card included with the bundle.
  • Paper clips should not be used on enclosures: it can damage mail processing equipment.
  • Do not send personal or stamped mail (i.e. business reply, pre-metered, etc.) to Admin Central Mail. Drop them into United States Postal Service mailboxes or mail chutes. 
  • To avoid potential delays, mail with special categories (i.e. certified, registered, etc.) must be kept separate from regular mail and clearly endorsed.
  • Do not send glossy or shiny material to Admin Central Mail for metering.

Metered Reply

With Metered Reply Mail, meter stamps may be used to prepay reply postage on first class letters, flats and postcards that do not exceed 12-ounces under the following conditions:

  • Meter stamps (impressions) must be printed directly on the envelope or card bearing the name and complete address of the meter license holder. Meter stamps on tape may NOT be used to prepay return postage.
  • Meter stamps on reply cards and envelopes must fully prepay the postage at regular first class rates.
  • The words "NO POSTAGE STAMP NECESSARY - POSTAGE HAS BEEN PREPAID BY" must be shown above the address of the meter license holder. See sample image.
  • Meter stamp must show city and state, but no date.
  • The words "NO POSTAGE STAMP NECESSARY - POSTAGE HAS BEEN PREPAID BY" and the meter license holder's name and address must be shown by using any photographic, mechanical, electronic process, or any combination of those processes. Handwriting, typewriting or handstamping are prohibited. If photocopied or otherwise duplicated, all capital letters must be used so that resemblance to typewriting may be avoided.



Permit Mail uses an indicia for first and third class mail, and standard (bulk) mail. Permit mail is processed quickly because it does not have to be metered or cancelled at the Post Office. Requirements for permit mail are as follows:

  • 200 pieces for First Class or 50 pounds minimum.
  • If 500 pieces of presorted First Class mail or more, please call 651-296-6802.
  • All pieces must be the same size and weight.
  • Must be accompanied by a completed mail pickup slip.
  • Must use permit number 171. That is the only number that can be used when mailed through Admin Central Mail.
  • Permit mail can be mailed only in the United States.
  • Must have an indicia containing the proper information: mail class, postage paid, permit number, city and state of mailing. See sample indicias.

Registered, Priority, More

Registered Mail

Registered Mail offers the highest level of security. First, second and third class mail may be registered. Fourth class (parcel post) may also be registered if it is sealed and mailed at the first class rate. Registration fees are in addition to normal postage fees. Rates are:

  • Items valued at $0.01 to $100.00: Postage fee of $11.50
  • Items valued at $100.01 to $500.00: Postage fee of $13.10
  • Items valued at $500.01 to $1000.00: Postage fee of $14.45

Certified Mail

Certified Mail provides the sender with a mailing receipt (proof of mailing) from the United States Postal Service. A record of delivery is maintained at the addressee's post office for six months. Certified mail can only be used with first class mail. The fee, in addition to postage, is $2.80 per item.

Insured Mail

Insured Mail provides coverage against loss or damage. It is available for domestic mail only. Rates are as follows:

  • Items valued at $0.01 to $50.00: Postage fee of $1.75
  • Items valued at $50.01 to $100.00: Postage fee of $2.25
  • Items valued at $100.01 to $200.00: Postage fee of $2.75
  • Items valued at $200.01 to $300.00: Postage fee of $4.70
  • Items valued at $300.01 to $400.00: Postage fee of $5.70
  • Items valued at $400.01 to $500.00: Postage fee of $6.70
  • Items valued at $500.01 to $600.00: Postage fee of $7.70

Priority Mail

Priority Mail is First-Class Mail that weighs over 13 ounces. All matter that is mailable by air can be mailed as Priority Mail. All Priority Mail must be endorsed as Priority Mail. Some things must be mailed as Priority Mail (or First-Class Mail), regardless of weight, including:

  • Handwritten or typewritten material.
  • Bills, statements of account, invoices or credit cards.
  • Personal correspondence (e.g. a letter to Grandma) or personalized business correspondence (e.g. a handwritten letter to your customer).
  • All matter, sealed or otherwise, closed against inspection.

Express Mail

Express Mail provides guaranteed next day and second day delivery within the United States.

For any item in these categories weighing over 10 pounds please call us at 651-296-6801.

Library, Media and Parcels

Library Mail

What you can send:

  • Books
  • Sound Recordings
  • Academic Theses
  • Educational Materials
  • Museum Materials
  • Printed Music
  • Periodicals
  • Items on loan from or mailed between academic institutions, public libraries, museums and other qualified organizations

Content is limited to books, sound recordings, academic theses, and certain other items. Library Mail cannot contain advertising except for incidental announcements of books. Each piece must show in the address or return address the name of a school or a nonprofit organization.

Media Mail

What you can send:

  • Books
  • Sound Recordings
  • Recorded Video Tapes
  • Printed Music
  • Recorded Computer-Readable Media (such as CDs, DVDs, and diskettes)

Media Mail can not contain advertising except for incidental announcements of books.

Parcel Post

Use Parcel Post for small and large packages, thick envelopes and tubes containing gifts and merchandise, or printed matter that does not qualify as Media or Library mail.