Missing Mail Search Request Initiated [USPS]: The Full Guide

It’s disheartening to wait for a package only for the USPS tracking page to show its status as, “Missing Mail Search Request Initiated.”

Let’s look at what this update means and if there is anything you can do from your side to necessitate faster receivership of your item. 

What Does the “Missing Mail Search Request Initiated” USPS Update Mean?

This tracking status means that the recipient filed a claim showing that the USPS had lost their package and the local post office in the destination zip code has received the claim. 

After a month or sometimes two of submitting the lost package claim, the USPS tracking status will be updated with the words, “The US Postal Service® received the search request you submitted and it’s being processed. Your package has not yet been recovered, but every effort is being made to locate your item(s).”

Will I Receive My Package After The “Search Request Initiated” USPS Update?

Most delayed or missing packages end up getting delivered albeit late. 

If yours was delayed and you opted to file a Missing Mail claim, chances are that it will still be delivered. 

In fact, other recipients report that USPS still delivered packages that had initially been marked as lost. Funny enough, the latest update could still be showing, “A search has been initiated on your item.”

If you are among the few unlucky ones, though, you might end up awaiting your package in vain. 

If USPS tells you, “According to the USPS tracking your item has not yet arrived at our post office. Please accept our apology for any inconvenience this matter may have caused you” or “ “The US Postal Service® received the search request you submitted and it’s being processed. Your package has not yet been recovered, but every effort is being made to locate your item(s),” we recommend that you keep these messages safe.

However vague these updates sound, they help legitimize the Missing Mail claim that you still haven’t received your package. Such evidence is crucial when dealing with shippers who don’t want to reship or refund. 

Why Doesn’t The Status Change For Several Days? 

Whenever a missing mail report gets filed, it is sent to the Mail Recovery Center (MRC) in Atlanta. 

In the MRC, all the packages that have been damaged or with destroyed shipping labels are sent there as USPS looks for solutions. 

If you had filed a Missing Mail claim due to delayed delivery and the status never changes, it might be that the staff at the Mail Recovery Center is still working on your item to ensure that it’s delivered or it’s completely damaged. 

Is There Anything You Can Do After Filing a Missing Mail Claim?

If yours was a time-sensitive package that wasn’t delivered within the estimated delivery date and you ended up filing a claim, we recommend:

  • Contacting the Shipper

Getting in touch with the shipper and letting them know that your package was delayed so much that you had to let USPS know is a great starting point. Most shippers won’t have a problem following up with the United States Postal Service and ensuring that you are properly sorted. 

Remember, you are the shipper’s client and it’s their responsibility to ensure that you receive your package within the agreed delivery date.

If yours wasn’t a case to do with an online purchase and contacting the shipper won’t be convenient for you, you can read the next step. 

  • Be More Patient

USPS has a high delivery success rate when compared to some other last-mile delivery companies. 

If yours wasn’t a time-sensitive package, we recommend that you wait for a few more days and you could end up receiving your package albeit late. 

Careful, though, as it might take a couple of months from when you filed the claim to when you will actually receive your package. 

Another scenario we can talk about patience is when expecting another USPS package and it’s getting live scans, avoid filing missing mail reports unless completely necessary. 

While the package might be out of the stipulated delivery date, getting scans no matter how senseless they mean shows that that package is still in transit. A little bit of patience goes a long way in this package delivery journey.