Today’s messaging system is extremely reliable, with plenty of protections against accidents, such as lost or stolen packages. No matter how secure and precise, there will always be a small margin within which a letter or package can be lost, not delivered, or even stolen. There is simply no way to prevent 100% of all potential crimes and mistakes. Fortunately, in the event that your package does not reach its intended destination, you can take steps to retrieve your email. All hope is not lost!
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Step 1: Verify That Your Mail Wasn’t Delivered
This may seem like an obvious step, but often the answer lies in the simplest solution. People can get stressed and even panic when an important letter or package doesn’t arrive and then come to unnecessary conclusions. Before worrying too much, take the appropriate steps to ensure that your email has not, in fact, been delivered and is not yet on its way.
If your package was shipped via USPS, it will have a tracking number. This number can be found on the receipt you received in the mail or in the confirmation letter via email from USPS.com. Once you’ve located it, use your USPS tracking number to recheck your email status. Check that the status has been delivered and that your package has not simply been delayed or redirected. If you used a different courier service, such as UPS or FedEx, you may still have a tracking number on your receipt or an email confirmation letter that can be used to locate the current location of your mail.
Step 2: Find your property
Always check your property carefully before concluding that your email has been lost. Mail is sometimes placed near a door, on a balcony, or hidden behind objects such as bushes, walls or fences. If you were not at home or could not respond when your mail arrived, the postman may have tried to put your letter or package out of the way.
It’s also possible that your email ended up with a neighbor. This is especially true if you live in an apartment or a housing complex, or if you have a community mailbox. Either way, it can never hurt to check with your neighbors to make sure they haven’t received your mail by mistake.
Step 3: start email recovery
Now that you’re 100% sure that your email wasn’t sent correctly, it’s time to see how to track it. How you proceed from there may vary depending on several factors, such as whether your package was insured or not. Read on to determine which step is right for you.
Missing mail search request
The USPS offers a missing mail search service on its website. This service requires that you first wait 7 business days. When it’s time to submit your search request, you’ll need to provide the following information:
- Sender’s mailing address
- Mailing address of the recipient
- Size and type of container or envelope you used
- Identifying information, such as your USPS tracking number (s), the date of shipment of the shipping receipt or receipt for the Click-N-Ship® tag
- Description of the content, such as what it is and the brand, model, color or size, if applicable
- Images that can help us recognize your item
After submitting your survey request, you will receive an email confirmation and periodic updates about the survey.
Remember that if you dispatched a package using a shipping method that includes a money back guarantee, such as Priority Mail Express, you can get a refund for the shipping. You can request this refund at your local post office or through the USPS website.
Submit an insurance claim for missed correspondence
If a package was shipped using a USPS shipping method that offers insurance, and the insurance was purchased, you may be eligible to receive an insurance payment for your lost package. If the correspondence was sent by Priority Mail Express or included COD services, an insurance claim can be filed regardless of whether or not the insurance was purchased explicitly. An insurance claim must be made as soon as it is found that a package has been lost, and can be made up to 60 days after the date of shipment. Complete regulations on insurance claims can be found on the USPS website; 609 Submission of Compensation Claims for Loss or Damage.
In general, to file a national insurance claim for lost or damaged mail, you will need to provide the following:
- A tracking number or tag number
- Evidence of purchased insurance, such as the original shipping receipt or an online electronic tag
- Proof of value, such as sales receipt, paid invoice, value statement, credit card billing statement or online transaction printout
Contact the police about mail theft
It is never good to jump to conclusions, but if you have reason to believe someone has stolen your mail, it may be a good idea to report it to the local police. Connection theft is a crime. If you have a suspect, provide their name and relevant information to identify them. If you report that your correspondence has been stolen, you should be prepared to prove your claims. Just because you don’t receive your mail doesn’t necessarily mean it has been stolen.
No matter what precautions you take before sending a package or what actions you take in the event of a lost package, there is no guarantee that you can get your lost correspondence back. However, cases of email loss are rare and with proper preparation you can mitigate and reduce this small risk even further.