USPS may override audit bureau findings for requester newspapers

NNA members publishing requester newspapers are advised that USPS issued a new rule today giving itself the power to revoke an audit bureau’s authority to validate requesters if USPS finds the bureau’s procedures are inadequate.

Requester newspapers are required to demonstrate that at least half of their distribution is requested by persons making specific affirmative requests to receive the paper. These requests are:

  • Valid for three years
  • Maintained on file by the publisher and
  • May not be prompted by payment, premiums or other incentives.

A requester newspaper may substitute an audit bureau’s report for the publisher’s records to be reviewed in case of a USPS audit. If an audit bureau is used, the publisher is required to keep only the records required by the bureau. And the audit bureau is required to maintain its records for three years following an issue date. But USPS reserves the right to review the bureau’s procedures.

The new rule is available here: 2022-14500.pdf (govinfo.gov).


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