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What To Do With Mail From A Previous Tenant

What To Do With Mail From A Previous Tenant

Posted on Dec 20th, 2021 in Your Apartment

When a tenant moves out, they are supposed to provide the United States Post Office with their new address. But, a common problem that new tenants in an apartment may face is that mail from the previous tenant is still delivered to the address. As a result, many residents are confused about handling the situation. Contemporary Management Concepts, LLLP has some tips on what to do when mail from a previous tenant is sent to your Florida apartment.

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Open It, Toss It, Or Shred it?

Opening up or destroying someone else's mail, no matter what type, is a federal crime, and you can be charged with "obstruction of correspondence." Though, you won't immediately hear the sirens unless someone can prove you intended to steal something. You should only open the mail when you have explicit instructions from the person whose name is on the envelope to open the mail. Throwing away someone else's mail is also considered destroying it.

Send The Mail Along

If you happen to know where the previous tenant lives now, you can forward them their mail by crossing out only the address on the envelope and writing the new address close to the incorrect one. If there is a barcode on the envelope, don't forget to cross that out! Filling out a change of address form for the other person is a federal crime. If you do not know the address they moved to, you can write "moved," "not this address," or "return to sender" on the envelope to let the post office know that they are no longer living at that address.

How Can I Make Wrongly Addressed Mail Stop Coming?

If sending the mail back to the sender doesn't get the mail to stop coming, you can put a note in the mail to your mail carrier with the names of people who no longer live there. You also can talk to your mail carrier, and while you might not have the same mail carrier every day, they may bring the news back to share with the office.

What To Do When You Move

Having a previous tenant's mail sent to you can be annoying, so when it comes time for you to move, make sure to fill out a change of address form, so the next tenant won't have to take care of your mail. Filling out this form is easy — it can be submitted online. However, remember it takes about 10 days for the change to become effective.


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