If you’ve ever gotten a letter labeled “certified mail,” you may have wondered: What is a certified letter? What is certified mail used for? Why is this considered certified mail?

Continue reading to learn everything you need to know about certified mail and what it’s used for.

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What Is Certified Mail Used For?

Certified mail is used as a way to provide a record that the intended person has received the mail that is being sent to them. There are two ways that the sender gets a receipt of proof:

  • proof of mailing (PS-3877 manifest): provides you with a receipt that your letter was received by the United States Postal Service
  • proof of delivery (Electronic Return Receipt or ERR): provides you with notices that your letter is delivered to the address or returned to the sender after a period of inactivity on the addressee’s end.

Importance of Certified Mail

This type of mail is beneficial when mailing important documents such as employment-related documentation or bank documents. Government officials, like IRS, will use certified mail to send you anything important so that they know the documents were delivered to you.

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Advantages of Using Certified Mail

The benefits of certified mail go well beyond getting proof that the letter made it to the recipient. Using certified mail allows you to follow the letter via in-route tracking via the Electronic Tracking Confirmation (ETC) service.

This type of mail sticks out like a sore thumb when you are on the receiving end. Any mail that needs a signature is likely to grab your attention. This is useful for the sender because it makes sure that the addressee notices it.

Use of Certified Mail

Certified mail used to be a complicated, time-consuming task that no one looked forward to doing, especially postal workers.

Thanks to the invention of modern technology, you can now print certified mail labels and digital postage stamps from the comfort of your home or office, making things easier for the busy life that you lead.

Disadvantages of Using Certified Mail

Like anything good in life, there are some disadvantages to using certified mail services. It costs about $3.50 to send something via certified mail. If you want it to get to its destination faster, you’ll have to pay extra for Priority Mail Delivery versus First Class postage.

Your mail may still get lost, and you might not get the proof of delivery that you were hoping for. If this happens, you can take it up with the local postal service. They will do whatever they can to make it right for you, even refund the service.

Will Certified Mail Make Life Easier for You?

So, what is certified mail used for? It’s primarily used to lift a weight off your shoulders if you don’t mind spending a little bit of money to do so. It’ll bring you a little peace of mind when it comes to getting your mail where it needs to be.

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