4 Steps To Stop Mail Addressed To A Deceased Person

Nov 20, 2019

What can you do to stop the post office from delivering mail addressed to a deceased person? You may be a deceased person’s newly appointed executor of probate estate or successor trustee of a trust. Or, you may have purchased a home from a deceased person’s estate or trust and receive some of their mail at your new address.

Here are four steps you can take:

1. Court Order To Post Office

You are the estate executor and the estate is officially closed and has been through the probate court. You can hand-deliver or send a copy of the probate order to the decedent’s local post office that closes the estate and dismisses you as the executor. Next, request to stop all mail service immediately. The only way to completely stop delivery is requesting to discontinue all mail service.

2. Do Not Contact Registration

To stop receiving mail addressed to a deceased person as the result of commercial marketing lists (in other words, junk mail), log on to the Deceased Do Not Contact Registration page of the DMAchoice.org website where you will be prompted to enter the deceased person’s information. According to the Direct Marketing Association, DMAchoice™ is an online tool that helps manage your mail. This site is part of a larger program that responds to consumers’ concerns over the amount of mail they receive. This is the DMA’s Mail Preference Service evolution, created in 1971.. After registering the deceased person on the website, the organization claims that the amount of mail received as the result of commercial marketing lists should decrease within three months.

3. Contact Organization Directly

For magazines and other subscriptions and mail that is technically not “junk” mail (for example, solicitations from charities to which the deceased person made donations while they were living), contact the organization directly. Inform them of the death. Note that most publishers will issue a refund for any unused subscription.

4. Return To Sender

If you share a mailing address with the deceased person or if you are the new owner of the deceased person’s home, write “Deceased, Return to Sender” on any mail addressed to the deceased person and leave it in your mailbox for pick up.

Remember it is a federal offense to open and read someone else’s mail. If you’re not a legal representative of the deceased person, don’t open their mail!

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