A postage meter in your home office can save you money and trips to the post office, but its use is governed by strict rules. Guidelines must be followed to ensure you don't commit a postal crime.
A postage meter, also known as a postage evidencing system, is a machine that "a customer uses to print evidence that postage required for mailing has been paid," according to the U.S. Postal Service website.
The U.S. Postal Service rents or leases postage meters to businesses. The machines cannot be sold, resold or purchased.
The U.S. Postal Service states that the manufacturers of the postage meter "must conduct inspection of certain meters on a scheduled basis." The customer must comply with these inspections.
When you print a postage label, called an "indicium," you must print the exact amount based on the weight, class, shape and other criteria of the mail piece.
If you fail to deposit the mail piece by the date indicated on the postage label, you must correct the date. You can do this only once per mail piece. To correct a date, print a new label with the correct date. The label must show a postage value of zero.
If you have a letter-size piece, place the corrected label on the non-address side in the upper right corner or on the address side in the lower left corner. If you have a parcel or a flat-size piece, place the corrected label next to the original indicium, except when applied by an ink jet printer on bar-coded flats.
If you printed a label without enough postage, reprint the label for the remaining amount.
- Photo Credit whitetag/iStock/Getty Images
What Is Metered Mail?
For organizations that send significant amounts of printed correspondence through the United States postal system, using a postage meter can increase efficiency...
Difference Between Metered & Stamped Mail
The postage stamp is a British invention that’s been around for a long time – since 1840 to be exact. Stamps are...
Can You Backdate a Postage Meter Back 2 Days?
Backdating mailing dates on rented postal meters may seem like a way to avoid late charges and prevent legal issues, but it...
Pitney Bowes Postage Meter Troubleshooting
Pitney Bowes postage meters are marketed towards small businesses that need a meter to weigh and calculate postage. Benefits of these postage...