As of August 1st, 2017, the USPS will implement a new Automated Package Verification system (APV for short). APV will greatly change how the USPS delivers domestic packages. Any domestic package shipped using USPS will be impacted, including USPS postage providers such as Stamps.com and Endicia.
This excludes letters, large envelopes, certified mail, and any/all international shipments.
How does APV change shipping?
New USPS processing facilities equipment checks your packages for correct specifications, including:
- Mail Class
- Origin ZIP Code
- Destination ZIP Code
- Postage Paid
In the past, improperly-applied specifications would result in a shipment being returned, and in some cases, delivery charges would be tacked on for the recipient to pay.
Now, the USPS will deliver the package but will issue cost adjustments back to your postal account balance. These adjustments apply to both overcharged and undercharged shipments, making for a much more seamless shipping process with the USPS. The goal here is to make sure that all shipments are delivered on time.
How can I tell if APV made an adjustment on a shipment?
The USPS has 30 days from a shipment's delivery to apply an adjustment to the account. When these adjustments are made, any special discounts your account has will be applied to the charge. So, if your Stamps.com account is on the free ShipStation Pro plan, those rates will be used.
Within ShipStation, you can keep track of APV adjustments for Stamps.com shipments, but adjustments to Endicia shipments will still need to be viewed within Endicia.com.
To view APV adjustments to your Stamps.com account, go to the Insights tab and click Account Balance History.
Select the date range, select Stamps.com as the provider, and set the Filter criteria Adjustment. This will bring up any adjustments made through ShipStation!
Can I dispute an APV adjustment?
Absolutely! Keep in mind, this won't be done through ShipStation, nor will it be done through Stamps.com. As with a claim for a missing/damaged package, you will need to take this up directly with USPS.
They have a direct email for disputes: VerifyPostageHelp@usps.gov
When emailing the Verify Postage Help department, include the following info:
- The package's Tracking Number
- The reason for disputing the adjustment (be as detailed as possible!)
If the USPS requests more info, they'll reach out via email. Once a decision is made on the status of your dispute, they'll reach out to you via a forwarded email.
For more info on APV, head here!