Virtual mailboxes allow you to use a real street address to receive mail and packages and manage your mail online.
Before you can start receiving your mail at a virtual mailbox, you have to complete the USPS Form 1583, a document from the postal service that gives providers like us the legal authority to access your mail.
We try to make the process of completing the form as easy as possible with an auto-fill form you complete after signing up for an account. Once you complete the form, we connect you to a video call with a notary free of charge.
We try to make the online notarization process quick and easy. However, if you run into issues, our onboarding team can help. If you're experiencing trouble, review some of the common issues we help troubleshoot for people:
What forms of ID can be used for a USPS Form 1583?
Once you're ready to have your form notarized, you'll need to have two forms of identification ready. The first should be a government-issued photo identification card. It needs to be currently valid, so make sure it's not expired before you start the process.
The postal service has different standards for those who hold a U.S. Social Security number and those who don't.
Accepted forms of identification for USPS Form 1583 for SSN holders include:
- A state ID card, such as a driver's license
- Passport (from the United States or another country) or passport card
- U.S. Permanent record card
- Certificate of Naturalization
- Armed Forces card
- ID card issued by a U.S. university
- Uniformed services ID card
- Tribal identification card
- Matricula Consular (Mexico)
- NEXUS (Canada)
If you do not have a Social Security number, you must provide a foreign passport, Canadian NEXUS card, or a Matricula Consular from Mexico.
The USPS also requires a secondary form of identification for the form. This doesn't need to include a photo, but it must include your home address. (Even if you're using the virtual mailbox for your business.)
Accepted secondary forms of identification include:
- A lease, mortgage, or deed of trust
- Voter or vehicle registration card
- Home or vehicle insurance policy
- Utility bill
- Form I-94, Arrival and Departure Record
What if I don't have a permanent address?
Sometimes, we all need to get away. Many of our customers need a virtual mailbox because they live a nomadic lifestyle where they're always on the move. If you're a frequent traveler without a home base, you might have trouble knowing which address to put on your USPS Form 1583. We recommend using the permanent address on your driver's license or what's listed on your vehicle insurance policy.
What if I don't have any of the secondary forms of identification?
The government requires the secondary form of identification, but some of these forms aren't always available.
If you own your home, you can usually get a copy of your mortgage or deed of trust from your lender. If you rent, your property manager can provide a copy if you no longer have one. If your home is in the United States, your local government entity, such as the county clerk, keeps a copy of the deed on file and many records are available electronically online.
If your utilities are under your name, a copy of your utility bill can typically be obtained with a phone call to your provider or logging into your payment account online.
Your insurance policies for your home or vehicle also qualify as a secondary form of identification and will have your permanent address on them.
Do I need to provide my personal information if the virtual mailbox is for my business?
When you set up a virtual mailbox for your business, the postal service still needs to verify your identity. Although it may seem unusual to provide identification tied to your home address, especially if your business has a physical location besides your home office, it's only used to verify that you are who you say you are.
Once you have a virtual business address, you can start using that for all your business records and as your business mailing address.
What if I live outside of the United States?
Even if you don't live in the United States, you can receive mail from the U.S. Postal Service with a virtual mailbox. The requirements to fill out USPS Form 1583 remain.
For your primary form of identification, many of our international customers use their passports. The USPS also accepts Canadian NEXUS cards and Matricula Consular IDs from Mexico. These same forms of identification also work for those in the United States who don't have a Social Security number.
For your secondary form of identification, you will need an official government-issued document such as utility bills, insurance policy statements, leases, or deeds that is written using the Latin alphabet or that has been translated and can clearly show your name and home address.
Still need help with USPS Form 1583?
If you're trying to verify your account and still need help, contact our customer onboarding department and they can help answer questions or set up a call with you.
Once you're done with your form, our online notary service will verify your account. Afterward, all verification steps are complete and you can start managing your mail from anywhere.
Learn more about Earth Class Mail, a LegalZoom company, here.