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How to Stop Junk Mail

If you are being overwhelmed with junk mail, use these ideas to stem the delivery of unwanted mail to your home or office.


  • Step 1: Return junk mail Return junk mail marked "address correction requested" or "return postage guaranteed" unopened to the sender. Write "Return to sender" on the envelope -- otherwise, the post office will not send it back.
  • Step 2: Call companies Call companies that send you unsolicited catalogs and ask to be taken off their mailing list. Use the 800 number listed on the catalog when placing the call.
  • Step 3: Contact customer service departments Call or write to the customer service departments of any organizations that send you unwanted mail and ask that your name be removed from the mailing list.
  • Step 4: Notify the three credit bureaus Notify the 3 major credit bureaus -- Equifax, Trans Union, and Experian -- that you do not want your personal information shared for promotional purposes.
  • TIP: The credit bureaus may sell your name and address to banks and credit card companies. To opt out of receiving pre-approved credit offers for 5 years, call the 1-888-567-8688 or go to
  • Step 5: Contact the Direct Marketing Association Contact the Direct Marketing Association at and ask them to delete your name from any mailing lists they have that generate promotions and catalogs. There may be a fee, but it will help get rid of junk mail and keep your mailbox empty.
  • FACT: Spam, a word for junk e-mail popularized in 1994, gets its name from a skit that appeared on Monty Python's Flying Circus.

You Will Need

  • U.S. Post Office
  • Telephone
  • Customer service departments
  • Credit bureaus
  • Direct Marketing Association
  • Internet access

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