Can I Put a Note In My Neighbor’s Mailbox? The Legal Answer

You get your neighbor’s mail and you want to put it in their mailbox, but you’re not sure if it’s okay to do so.

Raise your hand if that describes your current situation.

If your hand is raised and you want to know the answer, then read on! In this blog post, we will go over the legalities of putting notes into mailboxes and other ways you can communicate with your neighbors.

Can You Put a Note In Your Neighbor’s Mailbox?

The answer to this question is different for different scenarios, each of which is best discussed separately.

Is It Legal to Put Your Neighbor’s Mail In their Mailbox?

There will always be mix-ups from mailmen as millions of letters and packages are sent every day. To provide an easy solution to this problem, the government has made it legal to put misdelivered mail in the mailbox of the person it was intended for.

So when you receive mail that was intended for your neighbor, you can simply put it back in their mailbox.

Is It Legal to Put a Note In Your Neighbor’s Mailbox?

The only legal reason you have for using your neighbor’s mailbox is to deliver mail that belongs to them but has been delivered to you by mistake. So, no, it is not legal to put a note in your neighbor’s mailbox.

If you put a note or even a flyer in your neighbor’s or anyone else’s mailbox, they can legally sue you.

Luckily, we live in the digital age. You don’t need to put a note in your neighbor’s mailbox to convey a message. You can simply call them, reach out to them via social media, or write a note and stick it on their door or between their door frame.

Can I Get My Email Out Of My Neighbor’s Mailbox?

Do know for a fact that your mail is in your neighbor’s mailbox? Then you should just get in touch with them and ask them to give it to you. You shouldn’t open their mailbox by yourself as it’s illegal to do so and could lead to a hefty fine or even a jail sentence.

What Should You Do With Mail Delivered to the Wrong Address?

Do you keep getting your neighbor’s mail? Then the first thing you should do is contact the United States Postal Service (USPS). They will note your complaint and fix the issue right away.

Once you’re done dealing with USPS, the next step is to deal with the mail you already have. There are two ways you can go about it.

1. Deliver It Yourself

You can deliver the letter yourself by opening your neighbor’s mailbox. This is not an offense of any kind, and your neighbor might even thank you for it. However, this isn’t something most people want to do as it looks suspicious to open your neighbor’s mailbox, even if you’re just trying to give them their mail

The more comfortable option for both you and your neighbor would be for you to just go up to your neighbor’s home, knock on their door, and hand them their mail. Alternatively, you can give them a call or text them to invite them over to pick up their mail from your home.

2. Return It to the Courier

In case you don’t want to deliver the mail directly to your neighbor, you should just use a sticky note to label the mail with, “Not at this address”, and return the mail in a USPS Collection Box. The courier will then pick up the mail and deliver it to the correct address.

This method can also work in case you keep getting your neighbor’s mail but can’t get in touch with USPS for any reason. You may have to deliver the mail more than once. But it won’t be long till the mistake gets corrected because the courier will report back to management that your neighbor’s mail is being delivered to the wrong address.

What Other Ways Are there to Communicate With Your Neighbors?

In case you want to reach out to your neighbor but don’t want to send them a mail, here are some other ways to communicate with them.

Pay Them a Visit

The best way to communicate with your neighbors is by paying them a visit. This will not only allow you to solve any problems or sort out any misunderstandings, but it also gives you the opportunity to bond and get to know each other better.

Give Them a Call

You can always give them a call and speak with them directly. This is the easiest way to communicate with your neighbors, especially when you need an immediate response.

The only problem is that some people may not like receiving calls from their neighbors because they don’t want to be bothered by phone calls every now and again.

The best thing to do in such a case is schedule regular check-ins with your neighbors so that they don’t feel like you’re calling them too often or at odd times of the day. You can also ask if there’s another means by which you can reach out to them and set up an alternative communication method for future use.

Send Them an Email

If you want to communicate with your neighbors but can’t be bothered setting up a phone call, the best alternative is by sending them an email or a text message.

This way you don’t have to worry about bothering or disturbing them since they most likely will open their emails when it’s convenient for them and not at odd hours of the day.


We all make mistakes. Mailmen are no exception to this rule. A mailman putting mail in the wrong mailbox is actually quite a common occurrence. So if you get your neighbor’s mail, here’s what you need to remember:

  • Never open or throw the mail away. Doing so can lead to serious legal issues.
  • Inform your neighbor that you have their mail as soon as possible.
  • Don’t mess with the postage stamp and in case you can’t reach your neighbor, put the mail in their mailbox.
  • If you don’t want to go to your neighbor’s mailbox, simply return the mail to the courier who will then return it to the correct address.
  • If you keep receiving letters or packages by mistake, contact USPS to fix the issue.


  • Nathan Collins

    Having spent years working in the landscaping industry, Nathan Collins has cultivated a wealth of knowledge about the natural world. He is committed to helping others appreciate the beauty in their backyards, whether it's through identifying rare rocks and minerals or crafting the perfect landscape.

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