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How To Stop Junk Mail

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Tired of having your mailbox crammed with ads and other mail you didn’t ask for, like preapproved credit card applications? The good news is that there are ways you can cut down on how much unsolicited mail you get.

How To Get Less Mail From Marketers

You can decide what types of mail you do and don’t want from marketers. Register at the Direct Marketing Association's (DMA) consumer website DMAchoice.org, and choose what catalogs, magazine offers, and other mail you want to get. You’ll have to pay a $2 processing fee, and your registration will last for 10 years.

The site also offers the option to stop mail from being sent to someone who’s deceased or to a dependent in your care.

DMAchoice.org also has an Email Preference Service that lets you get less unsolicited commercial email. To learn more about what else you can do about unwanted email, read our article on email spam.

Learn more about stopping unwanted calls at ftc.gov/calls.

How To Stop Credit Card and Insurance Offers

You can decide that you don't want to get prescreened offers of credit and insurance in the mail. If you want to opt out of those offers, you have two choices:

  • opt out of getting them for five years
  • opt out of getting them permanently

To opt out for five years: Go to optoutprescreen.com or call 1-888-5-OPT-OUT (1-888-567-8688). The phone number and website are operated by the major credit bureaus.

To opt out permanently: Go to optoutprescreen.com or call 1-888-5-OPT-OUT (1-888-567-8688) to start the process. But to complete your request, you’ll need to sign and return the Permanent Opt-Out Election form you’ll get after you’ve started the process.

When you call or visit optoutprescreen.com, they’ll ask for your personal information, including your name, address, Social Security number, and date of birth. Sharing your Social Security number and date of birth is optional, but the website says that giving this information can help them ensure that they can successfully process your request. It says the information you give is confidential and will be used only to process your request to opt out.

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