Have you ever sent out a document or package and worried that somebody would say it didn’t get to its destination on time? A lot of people have. Luckily, most mail carriers have a service that allows you to receive a confirmation when a package is delivered. But does FedEx do certified mail?
No, certified mail is exclusively offered by the United States Postal Service (USPS). FedEx has a similar service but is not legally certified mail.
Now that you know FedEx has a comparable service, you’re probably curious about how it works. Keep reading as we explore everything you need about certified mail and similar services.
What Is Certified Mail?
Certified mail is an added service only available through USPS on first-class mail. As part of the service, drivers must obtain a signature before delivering a parcel. If someone signs for and accepts the package, the sender receives a delivery receipt with the recipient’s signature and other delivery details.
The primary purpose of certified mail is to prove that the recipient received the package on a specific date. Because of this, people often use the service when sending time-sensitive documents or fulfilling shipping promises.
That said, this service only provides proof of delivery. It does not update the sender on the shipping process or provide tracking information for either party. However, you can add tracking to the package, which you can check online by entering the tracking number.
How Do I Check the Status of Certified Mail?
You can expect to receive a mailing receipt and electronic verification when you use the Certified Mail service.
Mailing receipts provide proof that you sent a package or document. The benefit of this is that even if the parcel gets to its destination after a required deadline, you can prove that you sent it on time.
Electronic verification provides you with details about a delivery or an attempted delivery. They are not sent to you automatically unless you request a return receipt. Instead, you can check the status of delivery in several ways.
- By going to www.usps.com and entering your tracking number
- By calling 1-800-275-8777 and providing your tracking number
- By requesting a return receipt before or at the time of shipping a package
How Much Will It Cost to Send Mail Certified?
There are various costs associated with Certified Mail, including standard postage costs, Certified Mail costs, and any costs for added services.
The postage rate will depend on what type of mail you’re sending, the size of the parcel, and the type of postage you choose. Online shipping calculators and your local post office can help you gauge the shipping price based on different estimations.
The Certified Mail fee is a flat cost of $3.75, which is added to the cost of shipping/postage.
Finally, you’ll have to factor in the cost of added services. For example, the fee for a return receipt by mail is currently $3.05, while the price for an electronic return receipt is $1.85.
Ultimately, you can spend anywhere from a couple of dollars to hundreds of dollars, depending on what services and insurance you request. But, on average, customers typically spend below $5 for one parcel.
What Other Shipping Companies Provide Certified Mail Services?
It’s understandable why you might want the security of a signature or confirmation. You don’t necessarily have to send your package through USPS to get it.
FedEx provides several signature options for a sender to choose from, including:
- No signature
- Indirect signature
- Direct signature
- Adult signature
If you decide to request a signature, you can receive verification of delivery by following the steps below.
- Sign into your FedEx account
- Click on “Track”
- Click on “Obtain Proof of Delivery”
- Enter the tracking/shipment number
- Click “View PDF”
In addition to FedEx, UPS also has several confirmation services available, including:
- UPS Signature Required
- UPS Adult Signature Required
- UPS Delivery Confirmation
If you choose one of these options, you’ll receive a confirmation upon delivery, which you can find on the shipment tracking page.
Most shipment companies offer some delivery confirmation service to customers. However, it’s important to note that since the USPS is the only service recognized by the law, you’ll have to use them if you’re legally required to send something via Certified Mail.
What Happens if Noone Is Home to Accept Certified Mail?
One of the most convenient things about mail is that it’s dropped off at your door, and you can check it whenever you want. However, Certified Mail adds a bit of complexity to this because someone has to sign for the parcel. So what happens if nobody is home to sign for it?
The chart below shows how each company will handle this situation and what you can do to receive a package you might have missed.
|If Nobody Answers
|How to Get Your Package
|The driver will leave a receipt at the address and drop the parcel off at the nearest postal office.
|Anyone can take the receipt to the post office to sign for and retrieve the parcel if a general signature is required. Otherwise, you’ll have to pick the package up if your signature is required.
|The driver will leave a tag on your door that might include a time for a second delivery attempt.
|You can use FedEx Delivery Manager to sign for packages electronically if you know you won’t be home. You can also use this feature to leave delivery instructions for the driver. Unfortunately, this service is not available for direct or adult signature services.
Prevent this scenario by tracking your package and utilizing the correct signature requirements beforehand.
|An InfoNotice will be left at your location, containing information about the next delivery attempt or where you can pick up the package.
|The package will be shipped back to the sender after three failed deliveries, so ensure you’re home for the next attempt.
If you cannot be there, leave a note for the driver asking a neighbor to sign for the package.
You might have to use Certified Mail for numerous reasons, but it can be overwhelming if you’re unfamiliar with the shipping companies and their services. But if you’re ever in doubt, call your local postal service. The clerks are well-versed in shipping procedures and can usually answer any question you throw their way!
Now that you understand what Certified Mail is, how it works, and who can offer it, you’ll be better prepared if you ever need to use the service.
Hi there, I’m JJ, and welcome To EverydayQuery! Founded in 2022, we created this project to be the most complete resource on the web for your everyday questions regarding retail, shopping experiences, and overall consumer questions. We’re a team of passionate consumers whose mission is to provide the best answers to your everyday questions.