Mailable Matter in or on Private Mail Receptacles Mailable matter not bearing postage found in or on private mail receptacles represents a revenue deficiency to the Postal Service and is a violation of federal law. Title 18 United States Code, section 1725, provides for a fine of not more than $300 per piece for these violations. All employees must uniformly enforce the procedures detailed in the Domestic Mail Manual, section P011.2.0. The failure to enforce these procedures uniformly may jeopardize the criminal prosecution of repeated violators.
This is not directed at the accidental piece of mail dropped into the mailstream without a stamp. Even though we spend $20 to $30 to buy and install a mailbox in front of our house, that box is designed — even mandated by law — for the exclusive use of the post office.
If the local pizza delivery joint walks around your neighborhood, they may not stick their ads in or on your mailbox. They can’t hang it by a string, they can’t stick it inside, and they aren’t allowed to stick it in that little space between the red flag and your box. Not permissible. Same goes for the paper delivery people. They can hang their stuff on your door, stick it in-between the crack of your door, plop it inside your milkbox, and if they feel really gutsy, even hand it to you. But they may not put it in your mailbox without paying the proper postage. If you find this “non-mail” invading your mailbox, and it really bothers you, call your local postal inspector. They’ll put a stop to it real fast. Technically, your neighbor can’t even leave a message for you in your mailbox unless they, too, pay the postage.
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