File a Claim

  1. Domestic Shipments

    File a Claim Online

    Insured Mail

    You may file an indemnity claim for insured mail, COD items, Registered Mail with postal insurance, or Priority Mail Express packages. Each mail service has a different timeframe for filing. If your package arrives damaged or with missing contents, you may file a claim immediately.

    When May I File a Claim?

    Domestic Claims

    • Watch the "How to File a Domestic Claim" video to the right; and,
    • Follow the instructions below about domestic claims
    Learn About Domestic Claims

    NOTE: These instructions do not contain the text of the Postal Regulations in the DMM® on insurance claims. The Postal Service™ reserves its rights under the regulations to require strict compliance with the DMM.
    Filing Indemnity Claims (DMM 609)



    International Claims

    • Click the tab on the above right, International Shipments, to read about starting an international inquiry.
    Learn About International Claims

    Uninsured Mail

    If your uninsured mail is missing or delayed you may request a lost mail search.

    Find Missing Mail



    How to File a Domestic Claim video gives step-by-step instructions for submitting your claim and proof of value documents.

    USPS How to File a Domestic Claim Video Transcript (RTF | 82KB)

    Filing Domestic Claims

    What do you need to file a domestic claim?

    A Tracking or Label Number

    The tracking or label number is found on your online label record, package label, mailing receipt, or sales receipt. Tracking and label numbers are between 13 and 34 characters.

    Example: 9205 5000 0000 0000 0000 00

    If you don't see a number like that, look for a string of 20, 22, 26, 30, or 34 numbers.

     

    Proof of Value

    Proof of value can include:

    • A sales receipt
    • A paid invoice or paid bill of sale
    • Statement of value and/or estimates of repair costs from a reputable dealer
    • A credit card billing statement
    • Receipt of costs incurred for reconstruction of non-negotiable documents
    • Printouts of the online transaction identifying the purchaser and seller, price paid, date of transaction, description of item purchased, and assurance that the transaction status is completed

    Evidence of Insurance Purchased

    Evidence of insurance includes:

    • The original mailing receipt issued at the time of mailing
    • The outer packaging showing the names and addresses of the sender and the addressee and the proper label showing that the article was sent insured
    • A printed electronic online label record or a computer printout from the application used to print the label and purchase the insurance

    Proof of Damage

    Photos that clearly show the extent of damage will help with your case. For damaged claims, you’ll also need to provide an estimate of the repair costs from a reputable dealer.

    If you received something damaged, please hang onto the original packaging and the damaged item until your claim is settled. You may be asked to take them to your local Post Office™ for inspection later. Please do not reship the package.

    When can I file a claim?

    For damaged or missing contents, we recommend filing a claim immediately, but you must file no later than 60 days from the date of mailing.

    1. Priority Mail (Insured Mail)

      Priority Mail® (Insured Mail)

      15 to 60 days

    2. Registered Mail

      Registered Mail™

      15 to 60 days

      Registered COD

      15 to 60 days

    3. Priority Mail Express

      Priority Mail Express®

      7 to 60 days

      Priority Mail Express COD

      15 to 60 days

    4. APO/FPO/DPO

      Priority Mail Express®

      21 to 180 days

      First-Class™, Space Available, or Parcel Airlift

      45 days to 1 year

      Surface Mail

      75 days to 1 year

    5. Collect on Delivery (COD)

      Collect on Delivery

      15 to 60 days

    Need Help?

    If you’re unable to file a claim online, please call 1-800-332-0317 to have a Domestic Claim Form mailed to you.

  2. International Shipments

    Submit an International Inquiry Online

    Because international claims require coordination with a foreign postal administration, they’re handled differently than domestic claims. The process for filing an international claim begins with an inquiry that only the U.S. sender can initiate. In some cases, the service you used may only be available for a postage refund and not eligible to file a claim.

    To get started, you’ll need the 13-digit tracking number that begins with EA-EZ, CA-CZ, HC-HZ, or RA-RZ and ends in US. In addition, you may start an inquiry with tracking numbers that begin with LB, LH, LK, LM, LX, LY, or LZ, ends in US, AND was sent to either Australia or Great Britain and Northern Ireland destination countries.

    When can I begin the claims process?

    1. Global Express Guaranteed

      Global Express Guaranteed®

      Who can file?

      Only the US sender

      When is the filing window?

      3 to 30 days after shipment

      Other Restrictions

      Inquiries cannot be processed online. Call 1-800-222-1811.

    2. Priority Mail Express International (PMEI)

      Priority Mail Express International®

      Who can file?

      Only the US sender

      When is the filing window?

      3 to 90 days after shipment

      Other Restrictions

      Online inquiries can only be initiated by the U.S. Sender.

    3. PMEI with Money-Back Guarantee

      Priority Mail Express International® with Money-Back Guarantee

      Who can file?

      Only the US sender

      When is the filing window?

      3 to 30 days after shipment

      Other Restrictions

      30 days to submit an inquiry for delayed delivery; 90 days to submit an inquiry for loss, damaged, or missing contents.


      For a list of participating countries, visit the IMM®.

    4. Priority Mail International

      Priority Mail International®

      Who can file?

      Sender or Addressee

      When is the filing window?

      7 days to 6 months after shipment

      Other Restrictions

      Online inquiries can only be initiated by the U.S. Sender.

    5. Registered Mail Service

      Registered Mail™ Service

      Who can file?

      Sender or Addressee

      When is the filing window?

      7 days to 6 months after shipment

      Other Restrictions

      Online inquiries can only be initiated by the U.S. Sender.

    6. Services Inquiries Not Accepted Online

      Inquiries are not accepted online for the following services:

      • Global Express Guaranteed®
      • First-Class Mail International® Items
      • First-Class Package International Service® Items (when sent to countries other than Australia or Great Britain and Northern Ireland)

    What do I need to begin the claims process?

    A Tracking or Label Number

    • 13-digit tracking number, beginning with EA-EZ, CA-CZ, HC-HZ, or RA-RZ and ending in US.

     
     

    Approval of Claim Form

    The U.S. Postal Service® will review and investigate your inquiry. If the damage or loss is confirmed, an information packet and claim form will be sent to you from the Customer Care Center.

    Proof of Service

    • Mailing label
    • Customs form
    • Printouts of the online transaction
    • Post Office shipping receipt

     

    Evidence of Value

    • Sales receipt
    • Invoice or bill of sale
    • Copy of canceled check or money order
    • Credit card billing receipt
    • Statement of value from a reputable dealer
    • Estimates of repair costs from a reputable dealer
    • Printout of the online transaction(s)

    Proof of Damage

    • Document(s) supporting damage from US mailer
    • Document(s) supporting damage from foreign addressee
    • Receipt of article(s) damaged in the mail
    • Photo(s) of damage
    • Description and value of contents

    Damaged International Shipments

    You must immediately present the article, mailing container, wrapping, packaging, and any other contents received in damaged condition and/or with missing contents to a Post Office™ for inspection. The Post Office will verify the damage and give you a PS Form 3831, Receipt for Article(s) Damaged in Mails, for your files.

    In addition, you should contact the foreign sender and ask the sender to file an inquiry with the postal administration from where the item was mailed. The Customer Care Center will send you a claim form if you are entitled to compensation.

    Additional Resources

    Get complete details regarding the international inquiry, international claims processes, including appeals in the International Mail Manual (IMM®).

    IMM Chapter 9: Inquiries, Indemnities, and Refunds
    Terms and Conditions of Use for USPS® International Inquiries