Why Do I Have to Sign for a Package? A Guide to Signature Requirements & Delivery Requirements

Learn about the process of signing for a package and why carriers and insurance companies require recipients to provide a signature for certain shipments when they get delivered
sign for a package
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Have you ever wondered why you have to sign for a package when it arrives, or how to get your recipients to sign for a package you’re sending? This is a quick guide on signature requirements for handheld shipments and some instances when shipping carriers require a recipient to sign for a package.

Table of Contents

What is Signature Confirmation?

Signature confirmation is an added delivery service that shippers can pay for when sending a package. As the name suggests, the service requires the recipient to sign for a package upon delivery. Sometimes shippers choose this option for added peace of mind; after all, it’s a tell-tale way to ensure that the package made it to your recipient. However, in certain cases, the shipper may be required to pay for this service…which we’re about to get into in the next section.

Shipping Carriers Require Recipients to Sign for Certain Packages

Sometimes shipping carriers require recipients to sign for a package depending on what’s inside of the shipment. For instance, FedEx requires you to add signature confirmation when sending packages that contain firearms. UPS, on the other hand, requires a signature when shipping alcoholic beverages (to ensure the recipient is over the age of 21).

Since USPS is much more strict about the types of shipments it accepts (no ammo and alcohol, for instance), signature confirmation isn’t required on any particular USPS shipments. However, shippers can choose to purchase it as an optional service for the added peace of mind. Alternatively, USPS shippers may need to purchase signature confirmation if they want to insure the item they’re sending.

Some Companies Require Your Recipient to Sign for a Package in Order to Insure the Shipment

Sending sensitive items like firearms isn’t the only instance when you need to add signature confirmation to your package. You’ll also need your recipient to sign in order to insure certain high-value or breakable items. Laptops and electronics are common examples of items that require signatures in order for insurance to be valid.

Expensive jewelry is also an item that most shipping insurance companies require a signature for in order to provide coverage. For instance, Shipsurance specifically stipulates in their Terms & Conditions that a shipper must pay for signature confirmation when insuring jewelry valued at $2,500 or higher. If a shipper purchases insurance for a shipment like that but doesn’t add signature confirmation, Shipsurance will deny the claim.

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