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Does a Mailbox require the same name to be on incoming mail as the name registered for the mailbox?

If I register a mailbox under my real name but provide a different name (such as a pen name) to the world to send me mail to that mailbox, will that mail get delivered to my mailbox?Someone mailed me a letter but my name isn't listed on the mailbox. Will the mail still be put in the box being addressed to me?Will the USPS let you share a MailBox with another person whom you do not live with?What happens if a piece of mail that does not have your name on it gets shipped to your mailbox?Can you upgrade the same "personal" MailBox to a "business" one, or will you have to sign up for a new MailBox? (ref)

Yes. When a mailbox application (ps form 1583) is filed with a post office and approved, the owner/renter of the box needs to list the names of the people who will be receiving mail at that box other than themselves. Only those people are legally able to receive mail at that box. If any of those names change, it is the responsibility of the owner of the box to come in to the mailbox and update the ps form 1583 for their box to add and/or delete the other names on that box. If that is not done, mail that comes in for individuals whose name is not on the box will be returned to the sender as “addressee unknown” or “unable to forward”.The same can be said for businesses that open a mailbox. If the box is going to be used for more than one business, those business names must also be put on the ps form 1583 mailbox application and updated whenever there is a change. All mail being addressed to that box should have the name of the business also on it or that mail may get returned to the sender as “insufficient address” or “addressee unknown”. Individuals should not receive personal mail to a business mailbox or businesses physical address. Legally, the business owns the mail coming to that address so, if that individual leaves that business, they can not put in a change of address from that business.Many times companies will use very old mailing lists to solicit business and the names on the mail could be for people rented that mailbox 10+ years ago or never. The clerk's or Postmaster sorting the mailbox mail has to rely on the customer to inform the post office of any and all changes to the status of their mailbox if they expect to get all mail addressed to that box delivered to them. If “good” mail is being returned to the sender, 99% of the time it is because the box holder failed to notify the mailbox company clerk/ Postmaster of the changes.


Deb Lake, Postmaster, Retired after 27 years at U.S. Postal Service (1989-present) Answered March 27, 2017· Author has 123 answers and 658.8K answer views The rules are specific for individual vs business Post Office Boxes. Fraud prevention methods are used for MailBoxes. If the name on the package doesn’t match the name on the box the Post Office has the option of either sending the package back as “Addressee unknown” or to notify the mailboxholder that there is a package. The Boxholder will have to bring in the named person along with 2 forms if ID to pick up the package. Rules for Individually rented PO Boxes:

  1. The owner of the PMB is the person that brought the form in and provided 2 forms of ID. The spouse of the boxholder has to present 2 forms of ID as well. This person has to pay the rent. Any other person trying to pay will automatically close the box. The owner may close the box. And on closure, is the only person that may forward their mail to a new address. The boxholder is the only person allowed to buy a new key for the MailBox.

  2. Anyone else that may get mail in another’s MailBox is considered a rider in that box. They have to be brought into the Post office with the boxholder and also show 2 forms of acceptable ID to be added. The rider may get mail in that MailBox now. Riders may not forward out of a MailBox, pay the rent, close the box or buy a key. They may access the mail with a key only that will be provided by the boxholder.

Business PO Boxes

  1. Any and all names with the correct Mailbox number will be delivered to the business address.

  2. Only signed and designated agents on the Mailbox application may close, pay, buy keys.

  3. Only the Business named may forward mail out of the closed Mailbox. Individuals may not forward mail from a Mailbox.

  4. These are the basics for Renting a Mailbox.

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