How Long Does Usps Hold Packages

How Long Does Usps Hold Packages In 2022? (All You Need To Know)

Louis DeJoy

Louis DeJoy.png

United States Postmaster General

Assumed office

June 16, 2020
Donald Trump

Joe Biden
Deputy Douglas Tulino

Preceded by

Megan Brennan
Personal details
Born 1957 (age 64)


New York City


New York

, U.S.
Political party
Aldona Wos
Children 2
Stetson University




The United States Postal Service works hard every single day to deliver millions of mailpieces to every conceivable address in the U.S.

Sometimes packages are returned to the Post Office by carriers because they cannot be delivered, or due to bad weather.

If you don’t have the time to go right now, it might interest you to know how long packages are kept by USPS. You will find the answer to your question below.

How Long Does USPS Hold Packages In 2022? (All You Need To Know)

How Long Does USPS Hold Packages In 2022?

The United States Postal Service can hold mail for 15 days following delivery attempt. This applies to the majority of its mailing services. In each case, USPS also issues a second and final notice a few days later. All packages will be returned to their sender once they have been received after 15 days.

  • To find out how you can know if USPS is holding a package for you, how to find out where it’s being held, if someone else can pick it up for you and what happens to packages that can’t be returned to sender, keep reading!
  • How do you know if the USPS holds your package?

    When your U.S. The peach-colored PS Formula 3849 will be left if a Postal Service agent attempts to deliver your package.

    The PS Form 3849 is the Delivery Notice/Reminder/Receipt, and it’s the note that there is an item waiting for you in your local Post Office.

    According to my experiences, the carrier of postal mail will place the note directly at the top so that it is visible from the rest and not obscured among other envelopes.

    How Long Does USPS Hold Packages In 2022? (All You Need To Know)

    You might forget to return your package. Or you see it and you forget to go retrieve your parcel?

    Do not worry. The Post Office will still issue a Second or Final Notice approximately three to five calendar days after the original delivery.

    It’s the same PS Form 3849, however there is a box at the bottom left corner that reads “Final Notice”; if checked, that means that the time to pick up the parcel is nearing.

    In the same space, the postal carrier may also write the date the holding period ends and that the parcel will return to the original address.

    The 15-day holding period is not applicable to items sent Priority Mail Express. They are kept for only five days. After that, the Final/Second notice will be given within three days.

  • You have a lot less time to go get that parcel, so if you see that it was sent Priority Mail Express, hustle on down to the Post Office, stat!
  • How Do You Know Where Your USPS Package Is Being Held?

    You may know where your mail is going if you live in an area with only one Post Office.

    But if you’ve moved somewhere near, and that location has multiple Post Offices, you might be wondering how you find the one that is holding your package. explains you that there are two methods to get this information.

    First, you will find the USPS tracking page for your parcel. Once the tracking information has been updated, it will indicate where the item is.

    To speak to customer service representatives, call 1-800-ASK USPS (800-275-8777).

    How Long Does USPS Hold Packages In 2022? (All You Need To Know)

    What is the best way to pick up a USPS package?


    Make sure to bring your PS Form 3849 along with your photo identification (for some, a driver’s license, for others, an ID card or passport).

    They’ll ask you to sign your form if it’s not yet signed. Then, they will check your ID and make sure that the signatures, names, faces, and addresses are correct.

    Can Someone Else Pick Up Your Package From The Post Office?

    You can authorize someone else to pick up your package that is being held at the Post Office.

    But, on the PS Form 3829 you’ll need to type something similar to:

    (Name of retriever) has my permission to pick up mail for (Your Name).

    Your signature should be next to this little note.

    How Long Does USPS Hold Packages In 2022? (All You Need To Know)

    How Long Does USPS Hold Packages For A PO Box?

    When you have an item that doesn’t fit in your PO Box, the Post Office leaves you a notification in your box that you have a parcel to pick up at the front counter.

    Most packages will be held for the 15-day required by law. It all depends on how the package was sent.

    What Happens If You Don’t Pick Up A Package From The Post Office?

    USPS attempts the return of the package after the time limit has passed and the recipient has not claimed it.

    Sometimes the return address is not available or it is unclear, rendering it impossible to return.

    Mail can sometimes be sent to these areas, and it may end up in the Dead Mail section. There, some postal workers will try to locate missing addresses or illegible addresses, so the package can ultimately get returned.

    Good news! Even if you do not complete your holding period, your package may still be available to you.

    While it isn’t a certain thing (it might be en route to the sender), it’s possible.

    The package may still be with the Mail Recovery Center if it is not possible to return the parcel to its sender (one in GA, one in MN).

    After scanning the packages, if more than $25 is found, they will be held for another 60 days. Only during these 60 days can you take any action.

  • It is likely that your search will end if your item has a value less than $25.
  • To search for your package, you will need to complete a Mail Recovery Center Request.

    This especially includes barcode/Tracking info and the packaging size, as well as the contents of the package (in as much detail as you can manage).

    And then, just wait. The USPS will locate and return your package as quickly as possible.

    Ultimately, though, the lesson to be learned is not to miss your initial 15-day window for picking up a package at your Post Office.

    If you want to learn more about USPS services and whether USPS will leave packages behind in the storm, scan packages or deliver packages at night, we have posts.

  • Conclusion
  • The USPS keeps most packages that are not delivered for at least 15 days and informs recipients twice about the parcel.

    Your PS Form 3849 is all you need. You can also send someone to get it.

    Why Are All My Packages Delayed 2022?

    Your USPS Package Tracking Information may have not been updated. There could be many factors, including inclement conditions, busy buying season, and missorted packages.

    Why Is Usps Not Updating 2022?

    USPS tracking numbers can be lost or not updated due to issues such as inclement conditions, package scanning not being completed, and packages delivered at the wrong address.

    .How Long Does Usps Hold Packages In 2022? (All You Need To Know)