When Mail is Federally Protected

Mail received into the hands of an addressee or addressee’s agent is considered properly delivered mail. Mail addressed to employees or officials of an organization at the organization’s address is considered properly delivered after it’s received at the organization. For this reason, the Postal Inspection Service discourages staff from using their employer’s address to receive personal mail.

Mail delivered into a privately owned receptacle, designated by postal regulations as a depository for receipt or delivery of mail, is protected as long as the mail remains in the box. Mail adjacent to such a box is also protected.

Protection for your mail ends when items are removed by the addressee or the addressee’s agent. Mail addressed to a Post Office box is considered delivered once it is properly removed from the box.