Who Controls The Use Of Your Mailbox?

Discussion in 'Politics & Government' started by Ken Anderson, Nov 15, 2019.

  1. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Senior Staff
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    By law, with a few exceptions (Sunday newspapers being one of them), it is against federal law for anyone to place anything inside of a mailbox other than employees of the US Postal service and the owner of the box, who may place outgoing mail in the box.

    Where these boxes are owned by the US Postal Service, that makes perfect sense. However, many of us have to buy our own mailboxes. For example, I bought a very large box, as we are sometimes away from home for long periods of time. I chose the box, I bought the hardware required for mounting the box, and I mounted the box. If I wanted to subscribe to a newspaper not delivered through the mail, why should I have to mount a separate container for the newspaper delivery? There's plenty of room for both, and it's my box. This is a purely rhetorical question since the only newspaper I subscribe to comes through the mail, but it seems odd that laws should be applied to the use of a mailbox that I own.
     
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  2. Bill Boggs

    Bill Boggs Veteran Member
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    I think its always been so. I guess Thomas Jefferson or john Adams or maybe Lincoln or
    or Lyndon wanted the mailbox to be for mail and nothing else so they had congress pass
    a law to that effect. I've put keys in the mailbox for someone to pick up, left notes in the
    mailbox for someone to see. I guess the mail is sort of sacred. And maybe they have a point.
     
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  3. Holly Saunders

    Holly Saunders Veteran Member
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    There's no such law here in the Uk because our Mailboxes are inset in our front doors, (letterboxes)...so essentially by having that we're giving permission for anyone to post anything through our letter box...

    [​IMG]

    There are a few people who have Mailboxes, but they're usually in an apartment block in a communal area...
     
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  4. Bobby Cole

    Bobby Cole Veteran Member
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    Whilst there might be a lot of different ways to look at it, I believe the primary purpose of the law is to prevent people from taking stuff Out of the box.
    Granted, the federal edict hasn’t stopped people from stealing social security checks before direct deposit came into effect but to do so makes it a Federal crime.
     
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  5. Lon Tanner

    Lon Tanner Veteran Member
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    All the residents here at Assisted Living have a mailbox with their apartment number on it. Mail is delivered by UPS and given to the Consierge who places the mail in the individual boxes.A key is needed to open the box. Fed Ex & Amazon deliveries are hand carried by a staff worker and given to the resident.
     
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  6. Mary Robi

    Mary Robi Very Well-Known Member
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    Several years ago, a local church went around putting material in mailboxes, including mine. I called the post office to complain and was told that it wasn't illegal. I think it IS illegal, but I assume whoever I spoke to didn't want to deal with it. I get enough cr@p in my mailbox without strangers putting more cr@p in. Harrrrrumph……...
     
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  7. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Senior Staff
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    Yeah, it is illegal. I don't know how often they actually prosecute people for it, though.
     
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  8. Bill Boggs

    Bill Boggs Veteran Member
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    Not recently but some years ago in Lubbock, an official note was left in my mail box
    from the post office or the postal carrier that anything other than mail in the mailbox
    was illegal.
     
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  9. Beth Gallagher

    Beth Gallagher Veteran Member
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    We live in a subdivision with the communal "pod" of mailboxes every block or so. It requires a key to get into, so no one can access the mailboxes except the key holder and mail carrier.
     
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  10. Bess Barber

    Bess Barber Very Well-Known Member
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    @Ken Anderson The newspaper would break the stamp law. Nothing can be handled back and forth in your mailbox unless it has a proper stamp.
    I agree, it's YOUR mailbox, but they don't see it that way. It's possible the law also protects the mailman, so they don't accidentally take out a handwritten note someone left you or any other type of business/legal documents someone may use it for if there wasn't a stamp law. I don't know if they would prosecute, but no newspaper delivery person will ever put it in any mailbox because they could be fined. It's a federal law.

    The U.S. Code for crimes and criminal procedure prohibits the placement of unstamped flyers in any mailbox. Title 18, section 1725 states that any person who knowingly deposits "mail-able matter" without postage in an established letter box shall be subject to a fine.
     
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  11. Holly Saunders

    Holly Saunders Veteran Member
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    The U.S. Code for crimes and criminal procedure prohibits the placement of unstamped flyers in any mailbox. Title 18, section 1725 states that any person who knowingly deposits "mail-able matter" without postage in an established letter box shall be subject to a fine.


    ooooh I do wish they would do that here (make it illegal to deliver something unstamped) ... it would prevent all the massive amount of junk mail that is delivered either by leaflet droppers, or by the postman himself...
     
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  12. Milla Jonas

    Milla Jonas Active Member
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    Simple here :) we put a No Junk Mail sign on your letter box ...no problems with junk mail from the postman or J.M distributors
     
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  13. Teresa Levitt

    Teresa Levitt Well-Known Member
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    we moved from NC to a small town in southeast Illinois. ...
    put up our maibox...post office said...we don't deliver on a dead end street....
    coulda stirred that pot....I was a city mailman in charlotte for years. ...
    just got a po box here and let it go for now...

    just another entitled attitude of government ran agencies
     
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  14. Al Amoling

    Al Amoling Veteran Member
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    About as often as they prosecute the people who drive down your street and crash your box with a hammer or bat.
     
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  15. Holly Saunders

    Holly Saunders Veteran Member
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    if only they took notice of that...but mostly they don't..plus the junk the Postman delivers (aside from the leaflet distributors) is legal junk.. and is often delivered alongside the regular post or even when we have no mail to receive he still has to post the junk through our mailbox..by law!!
     
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