What To Do For Lost, Missing, Stolen And Delayed USPS Packages?

 December 4, 2020

By  Vada Shelby

United States Postal Service (USPS) is one of the most reputed postal delivery service providers in the world that is known for its efficient and timely delivery services. In USPS there is hardly any record when the customer lost their package or did not receive their package. But no matter how much-esteemed an organization it is no company can ever guarantee that any mishap will not take place. As such any kind of mishap can also happen in USPS as well. Generally, whenever any package or mail is sent through USPS, utmost care is taken but still sometimes some package or mail may get lost. During such a condition, it becomes very essential to do certain things that will help you to find your package or mail. Hence, in this article, we have come up with all those things that you need to do when you find that your mail or package is lost or stolen or never delivered. That is the reason why this article is very important for every customer of USPS

Check The Status Of The Mail :

For most USPS postal delivery service, you automatically get the tracking number. This tracking number helps you to check where your package is. All that you need to do is to visit the official website of USPS and put the tracking number on that blank space and press the enter key. Then the USPS website will show you the current status of your package. If you observe that there is no information then you must go to the Informed Delivery Option. With the help of the Informed Delivery Option, you can get a digital preview of the impending mail item. This informed delivery option can also help you in a great way to know when there was a delay in reaching the mail to its final destination. Thus it provides a great service in tracking the status of your mail and the best thing is that you do not have to pay anything for availing of this service. It is totally free of cost and it is a kind of service which helps you in managing the packages. Thus with the help of this exceptional service, it becomes easier for people to check if there is any mail or package in your mailbox at any point in time and anywhere.

Check Standard Delivery Time :

One most important thing that you need to do before declaring that your package is lost is to check its standard delivery time. At USPS you will get a different class of mail and the standard delivery time of every mail class is different from one another. But in most cases, it is seen that people assume that their package or mail is stolen without knowing the actual standard delivery time of that class of mail. But then after the proper inquiry, it can be seen that the package is still in transit and has not lost or stolen.

The following is the standard delivery time of the different USPS class of mail and you must know it before you raise any concern:

USPS Mail ClassStandard Delivery Time Suggested Waiting Time
First-class mail1 to 3 days5 or more days
Priority mail1 to 3 days5 or more days
Priority mail express1 to 2 daysN/A as it is guaranteed delivery
Retail Ground2 to 8 days14 or more days
Media Mail2 to 8 days14 or more days
Bound Printed Matter2 to 8 days14 or more days
Marketing Mail3 to 10 days14 or more days


Thus it is always advisable for the USPS customer to wait for at least that much time as mentioned in the above table from the date of shipping of your package. In case you do not receive your mail or package even after the time period as mentioned in the above table then it becomes necessary to raise the concern at the earliest.

Submission Of A Search Request For Missing Mail :

If the date as mentioned in the table pass and you do not receive your package it is generally believed that the package or mail is lost. It then becomes necessary to submit a search request to the USPS for searching the missing mail or package. While submitting the search request it is required to provide various details such as the complete mailing address of the sender as well as the receiver, the type, and size of the envelope or the container that the sender sent to the recipient, identifying information, date when the package was mailed, the check-N-Ship label receipt, etc. Apart from that, while putting searching request USPS carrier may also ask you to give the details about the belongings, for example, you have to give details about what exactly the shipment is, what was the brand and the model of the mail item, what was the color of the item, what was the size of the item, and some other details. If you have any picture of the missing mail item it would be a great help as in such case USPS carrier will be able to recognize the missing mail item and take prompt action.

Once you fill-up the ‘find my package request’ form you will get a confirmation email from USPS. After that USPS personnel will keep you sending intermittent updates of the related request. When the USPS carrier takes prompt actions there is a huge chance to find the missing package and in such case, they will send the package to the recipient’s address.

What Will Happen If USPS Cannot Find The Missing Mail?

In case USPS cannot find the missing package you should claim for refund. However, USPS does not give you a refund for every class of mail or package. In case your mail item was booked with money-back guaranteed service then only you will be able to claim for refund. Service like USPS Priority mail express comes up with a money-back guarantee and thus you can get a full refund. In order to get a refund, the customer needs to provide proof of purchase. Apart from that, the customer also has to provide a tracking number of the package, purchase receipt, and Photo ID.

The good thing is that the customer can request a refund online just by signing into the USPS account. In case you do not have an account on USPS, you can easily register it for free. However, you can also go to the Post Office for claiming your refund.

What To Do If The Package Is Stolen?

In case you have never received your package or if your package has stolen then you have to file for a claim of your package. But for that, your package must have insured and as such, it is always advisable to file a claim in case you have insurance and any of your packages is lost or damaged. But before claiming you should know that you have to claim before 60 days from the date you have mailed your package. The following are the main class and the time by which you must file the claim:

  • Insured mail or Priority Mail: You must claim in between 15 to 60 days
  • Cash on delivery items: You must claim in between 15 to 60 days
  • Priority Mail Express items: You must claim in between 7 to 60 days
  • Registered mail with postal insurance: You must claim in between 15 to 60 days

Conclusion: The details for the lost mail have been discussed already. What can you do for your lost mail and what are the steps that would be taken by USPS for the lost mail, are being discussed? Do which you like the best in the suggested ways. Hope it will help you right.

Frequently Asked Questions – FAQ

Q.1. Do Lost Packages Ever Found?

USPS hadn’t ever found the lost package. It is better to go to the local post office and get paper evidence from the post office and then report to a local police station.

Q.2. Who Is Responsible If A Package Is Lost?

If the delivery status shows that the package has been delivered and you haven’t even seen the package then the “Seller” will be responsible for this.

Q.3. How Long Does It Take For USPS To Find A Lost Package?

If you have submitted a Missing Mail Search Request then it would take 14 days or more to find or work on your lost package.

Q.4. What Happens If You Lie About Not Getting A Package?

Once you have got your package and still you are lying that you haven’t got your package then it will be illegal for sure. You could be looking for a mail fraud prosecution.

Q.5. Do Police Investigate Missing Packages?

Yes, it is reported as a crime if you have got an empty package or a missing package and the Police will look into this matter but you won’t be a suspect for them and they will not knock your door for investigation.

Q.6. Who Pays For The Stolen USPS Packages?

The seller will pay for the stolen packages and if you send a package using Priority Mail then it already covers insurance of $50.

Q.7. Is USPS Responsible For The Stolen Packages?

No, if the packages have delivered to the right address then USPS will not be responsible. If a missing or lost package occur after delivery by the postal service then indemnity will
not be paid.

Q.8. Can I Get A Refund If My USPS Package Is Late?

In the case of Priority Mail Express if you haven’t got the package by the guaranteed time then you can request a refund.

Q.9. What Happens When the USPS Doesn’t Deliver On Time?

USPS has an offer of money back if you don’t get your product by the promised time.

Q.10. Will USPS Tell You If Your Package Is Lost?

No, USPS will not tell you that your package has lost on their tracking system.

Vada Shelby


  1. My inheritance money was not delivered or returned to sender…It has been several months …since right ;around last years Christmas time.

  2. Mail simulus check was send out on July 6 and I still haven’t received it I haven’t received it what’s going on

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