What is Mail Recovery Center? (Get a mail back from mail recovery center)

If you are a citizen of the United States and a fan of sending mail, whether official or friendly, you might face a dead letter or an undeliverable one because of the wrong or missing address. So, it would be helpful to learn more about the mail recovery center and how you can get mail back from there. And here, I invite you to read this text until the end and learn more about all the details of the USPS mail recovery center.

mail recovery center

What is the USPS Mail Recovery Center?

Before I want to explain the mail recovery steps for U.S citizens, it might be helpful to introduce the USPS mail recovery center. This center is the postal service® ’s official “lost and found” department located in Atlanta in the U.S. It was previously known as the Dead Letter Office and is responsible for the “lost and found” section and those letters that are undeliverable or non-returnable will be finally sent there.

Why Does Mail Get Sent To The Mail Recovery Center?

As I have mentioned in the above text, the mail recovery center is a place of undeliverable mail. And that will happen as a result of different occasions, like when you write an incorrect or invalid address on your parcel, or the shipping label is damaged in a way that is not recognizable. Then if we assume it wasn’t wrongly delivered to another location or could not be brought back to the sender, the final home it can be sent is the USPS mail recovery center.

How Can I Get Mail Back From The Mail Recovery Center?

If your sent package is worth more than 25$, you have the chance of recovering it from the USPS mail recovery center. First, contact the local Post Office and ask to submit a USPS Mail Recovery Center Search Request. If you did these steps sooner than 60 days passed from the original mailed date, the USPS® begins the investigative process and tries to find your package.

mail recovery center


Can I Prevent Mail From Going To The Mail Recovery Center?

While the recovery process of dead or lost mail from the USPS mail recovery center is hard and tedious, there is no way that guarantees your package won’t go undelivered or become lost. But below are two points that might help you decrease the possibility that your mail goes to the mail recovery center:

  • Address Validation: 

You can use different systems, like SmartSoft DQ, and provide an address that is parsed, researched, confirmed, and standardized based on the USPS® certified data.

  • Additional info:

Also, it might be useful to add additional forms of address verification within the package you want to send, such as packing slips, Bills of Lading, or invoices and receipts.

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How Long Will The Mail Recovery Center Hold Mail?

When your sent package is lost and gets to the mail recovery center and is worth more than $25 or $20, there will be two situations. The first case is about barcoded ones that will be held there for 60 days. And on the second occasion, if your package doesn’t have a barcode, they will only keep it for 30 days. And finally, if you can not recover it during this time, it will be auctioned off, donated, or destroyed.


Is lost mail ever recovered?

Yes, if you did all the steps in time and you were lucky, there is a chance to recover your lost mail.

What Does The Mail Recovery Center Do If They Cannot Identify A Recipient?

Usually, they will be donated, recycled, discarded, or auctioned off. 

What If A Package is Mistakenly sent to the Mail Recovery Center?

In this case, the sender should call the Consumer Affairs representative via 1-800-ASK-USPS (1-800-275-8777) or visit the local USPS Post Office and request a search submition as soon as possible.

Is The Mail Recovery Center The Same As The Dead Mail Center?

Yes, Dead Mail Center was the former name of this facility.


In the above text, you read all the details about lost or dead mail and how to recover them from the USPS mail recovery center before they donate or recycle it. Also, there we talked about the Address validation process and how you can add extra info to your package and prevent this hard mail recovery process. But if you still have any questions, it is better to contact their support team through USPS official site.

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