What Does “Missent” Mean USPS? (+ Other Common FAQs)

While USPS is a titan in the mail industry and one of the most reliable choices for shipping, there’s always the potential for human error.

This is why you can receive a “missent” notification through tracking- but what does that mean, and what do you do about it?

What Does “Missent” Mean USPS? 

The “missent” tracking notification from USPS means that your package got loaded into the wrong truck and is heading to the incorrect area. This can be a result of the package being put in the wrong bin or placed on the wrong conveyor belt. Usually, this issue is resolved within a day or two and requires no further action.

While mail being missent can seem like the end of the world, it’s a relatively simple issue with a simple fix- keep reading to find out how!

Why Does Mail Get Missent?

Mail being missent is a relatively common issue that’s largely due to human error.

USPS facilities handle about 500 million pieces of mail every day, which leaves a lot of room for a few items to be misplaced!

Typically what happens is that a piece of mail or a package gets put in the wrong bin or put on the wrong conveyor belt and gets loaded into the wrong truck.

This truck isn’t going to your area, which then yields the “missent” notification.

The good news is that if you’re receiving a “missent” notification, it means that USPS has caught the error before the package was delivered and has it set aside to take back to the facility so it can be put on the correct truck the following day.

To learn more about what USPS has to say on missent mail and their best practices when your mail is missent, as well as what they’re doing to limit the potential for missent mail, you can click here.

What Do I Do If My Mail Was Missent?

What Do I Do If My Mail Was Missent? USPS

The best thing to do when your mail is missent is to be patient.

If you received the “missent” notification, it means USPS is aware of the error and is already doing everything it can to correct it.

Because this is a common issue, it’s usually resolved within 1-2 days, with no action required on your part.

The USPS postal worker who had your package incorrectly loaded onto their truck will set aside your package, follow their route as normal, and then take your package back with them to the facility at the end of the day.

Then, your package will be placed in the correct bin and shipped out first thing the following morning.

Does the Missent Notification Mean My Mail Was Delivered To the Wrong Address?

While it’s possible for missent mail to be delivered to the incorrect address, that’s certainly not what the notification means!

The “missent” notification means that the package was put on the incorrect truck but that USPS caught the mistake before the package was incorrectly delivered.

While this can result in a later delivery, usually by 1-2 days, it does not mean that your package was already delivered to the wrong place.

It’s always best not to panic when you receive a “missent” notification, as it means that the mistake has been caught before anything drastic happens and that it’s actively being handled by USPS.

That being said, sometimes a missent package can be delivered to the incorrect address if there is a “perfect storm” of human error, so read on to find out what to do if that happens!

How Do I Recover Mail Sent To the Wrong Address?

While it’s rare, it’s not unheard of for missent mail to be mistakenly delivered by the postal worker whose truck it’s on.

If you receive a “missent” notification and then a “delivered” notification but still do not have your package, it’s always best to call or visit your local post office.

Once you’re in contact with the post office, speak to a supervisor about what’s happening.

The scanners mail couriers use have a built-in GPS, so the supervisor should be able to locate the address where your package was mistakenly delivered and take it from there.

To know more, you can also read our posts on whether or not USPS charges for a change of address, what happens when USPS is stolen, and what is USPS informed delivery.

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Marques Thomas

Marques Thomas graduated with a MBA in 2011. Since then, Marques has worked in the retail and consumer service industry as a manager, advisor, and marketer. Marques is also the head writer and founder of QuerySprout.com.

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