If you have an important document that needs to be mailed sending it via Certified Mail through the United States Post Office (USPS) is a considerable option. Certified Mail provides you with proof that your document was mailed and received by the recipient. Sending your document by Certified Mail costs more than standard mail. To send a document by Certified Mail, you will need to fill out the correct form and receipt. The postal clerk will verify that all information is included on the forms.

Things You Will Need
  • Certified Mail Receipt

  • Domestic Return Receipt

Step 1.

Get a domestic return receipt and a Certified Mail receipt. These forms can be obtained from the post office on a customer service desk in the lobby. A postal clerk can also provide you with these forms. The domestic return receipt is approximately 7 inches by 3¼ inches. Fill out the side which says, “Sender: complete this section.”

Step 2.

Complete part one of the Domestic Return Receipt, including the name and address of the individual or business that the letter or document is being sent to. Part two contains the 20-digit article number, which is an adhesive strip pulled from the Certified Mail Receipt. Check the box in section three stating Certified Mail. Complete box four if you want restricted delivery, which means only a specified person can receive the letter or document.

Step 3.

Flip the Domestic Return Receipt over to the other side once side A has been completed. In the space labeled, “Sender: Please print your name, address and zip + 4 in this box,” it is important to do exactly as the instructions say. This side will also have two adhesive strips that need to be removed. Fasten this side of the Domestic Return Receipt to the side of the envelope where it is sealed. Your name and address on the domestic return receipt will not be visible.

Step 4.

Complete the Certified Mail Receipt, which is approximately 5 ¼ inches by 3 inches, which includes a perforated section that is 1 ¼ inches long. Remove the perforated section, and fasten it to your envelope to the right of your return address in the upper left-hand corner. Tear off the other section of the Certified Mail Receipt.

Step 5.

The postal clerk will run the portion of the Certified Mail Receipt, which is not attached to the envelope, through the postal machine. The amount you must pay for postage, including any fees will pre-fill on the form. The clerk will also fill out the bottom portion of the Certified Mail Receipt, located below the postage fees, designated for the name and address of the recipient.

Step 6.

Get your confirmation from the clerk. The clerk will then return the completed portion for your records. When the intended party receives the envelope, they will sign the Domestic Return Receipt, and it will be sent to you. This is your confirmation that the letter was received.


If you have questions about filling out the Certified Mail Receipt or the Domestic Return Receipt, the postal clerk will assist you.