Report a Damaged Mailbox
If your mailbox was damaged by a City plow, you can report the damaged mailbox online.
Damaged Mailbox Reimbursement Policy
The Streets Division does not repair or replace damaged mailboxes or support posts.
The City will provide a reimbursement up to $75 if the damaged mailbox meets both of the following criteria:
- A City operator damaged the mailbox while operating within the street gutter / curb line.
- The mailbox was installed to meet the United States Postal Service installation guidelines before the damage occurred.
After we receive a report of a damaged mailbox, staff will conduct an inspection and determine if the two criteria were met. We'll contact you directly to let you know the results of the inspection and how the reimbursment will be distributed.
Remember to save receipts for the repairs or replacement.
Mailboxes damaged by the weight of snow exiting the plow are not covered under this policy and no reimbursement will be offered.
United States Postal Service (USPS) Information
Frequently Asked Questions
What do you do to inspect my mailbox?
We dig the snow out in front of the mailbox to reveal the curb. We then use a measure guide and level up from the curb face. If your mailbox is still on the post and the guide touches the mailbox, it does not meet USPS regulations. If your mailbox is not on the post, we measure back to the base of the post and subtract the length of your mailbox to determine how far back the face of the mailbox was. If the measurement is less than 6”, it does not meet USPS regulations.
My mailbox has been in the same place for years. Why did it get knocked off and broken now?
This could be due to any number of factors. Direct contact with a plow or snow removal equipment, weight of the snow exiting the blow, age of the post/mailbox, or improper placement could all play a role.
Why is the placement of my mailbox important?
Plows are designed to avoid contact with mailboxes that are installed according to USPS regulations. A mailbox that is too low and/or too close to the curb line could put it in line with the path of the plow, making it more likely to be damaged.
I didn’t install my mailbox. Why am I responsible for it now?
Homeowners must ensure that mailbox placement meets USPS requirements. If a builder, contractor, or even previous owner installed one incorrectly, the current homeowner is still responsible.
Why hasn’t my postal carrier said anything about my mailbox not being installed properly?
Good question. And it is one that should be directed to your local post office. From what the Streets Division has learned in the past, many postal carriers won’t comment on mailbox placement until it is inaccessible.
Anything else that’s important to know about my mailbox?
- Adding a newspaper box to the bottom or side of your mailbox increases the surface area of the mailbox, making it more likely to be hit by snow or the plow.
- During sub-freezing temperatures, plastic mailboxes and/or posts become brittle and will break or crack easily with very little force.
- Use correct building materials to hold the mailbox together. One common issue we see are mailbox assemblies with small nails or screws that aren’t strong enough withstand snowfalls.
- In the fall or summer, check your mailbox posts for any obvious signs of rot or decay so it can be replaced before winter hits.