Franking - Mass Mailings/Newsletters
You must submit an Advisory Opinion Request for all unsolicited mass mailings via the online portal here.
Frequently Asked Questions:
What is a mass mailing?
A mass mailing is an unsolicited mailing initiated by a Member and distributed to 500 or more constituents, the content of which is substantially identical, and regardless of means of distribution, such as (radio advertisement, telephone town hall meeting, newspaper advertisement)
What means may a Member use to transmit official correspondence and communications?
A Member may use whatever means are available to the public in the market place, which includes but is not limited to, Franked mail, e-mail, faxes, newspaper inserts, posters, flyers, banners, signs, telephone conference calls, videoconferencing, automated telephone calls, audio and video messaging, advertisements, public service announcements and handouts.
What is the "Mass Mail Statement?"
The following text is the mass mail statement: "This mailing was prepared, published, and mailed at taxpayer expense." A Member is required to include this statement on every mass mailing. It is required on all mass mailings. The statement must appear on page one of a document or on the address side of the envelope or mailing panel/label; must be prominently displayed; and not be printed in smaller than a 7 point typeface.
When is an Advisory Opinion required?
A Member is required by law to request an Advisory Opinion and House Regulations, prior to printing, producing, or distributing an unsolicited mass mailing/communication.
Where, and to whom, can a mass mailing be distributed?
A Member is authorized to distribute a mass mailing to constituents in the congressional district the Member currently represents.
May I send a Christmas card or greeting under the Frank?
The law prohibits the use of the Frank for any card or message expressing holiday greetings for any traditional holiday for example, Christmas, Easter, and Thanksgiving.
May I send under the frank a birthday greeting that was requested by a constituent?
No, birthday, anniversary, wedding, birth, retirement, and condolence messages and similar personal greetings are prohibited.
May I sent voter registration information to my constituent in a mass mailing?
Yes, a Member may send under his/her frank materials regarding voter registration and other information on voting as long as it is nonpartisan and contains no political material.
Can I enclose a franked envelope with my questionnaire to be used to return constituents answers?
No, you are not permitted to send a franked envelope to return anything from a constituent, only the Member has use of the franking privilege.