TN 27 (01-11)

GN 02605.700 ZIP Code Software and Change of Address (COA) Action

A. Process for ZIP code software and COA action

1. Address information

Address information contains street address, apartment number, city and State information. The system does not validate the address entered; however, there are edits on the length of the address field. (Input varies greatly from office to office). Provide name and address information in all capital letters. Unit designators (i.e., apartment numbers, etc.) must directly follow the primary identifiers. For instance, name, address number, street name and directionals if the address does not exceed 22 characters (including spaces). If it does exceed 22 characters, place the unit designator on the line immediately above the delivery address line. The automated ZIP Code Maintenance process affects the quality and format of address, input improvement in address quality, and addressing for standardization is more important than ever.

A standardized automated process will save SSA millions of dollars through postal discounts.

2. ZIP code and automated process

When you enter address or ZIP Code information, the system uses a ZIP +4 software to verify the 5-digit ZIP Code and the last 4 positions in the 9-digit ZIP Code. In order for the system to “read” the address information to properly determine the correct 9-digit ZIP Code, the address must be in a standardized format. Using the Postal Service standard address guidelines, will optimize the use of the ZIP +4 Software, reduce SSA mailing costs, and improve mail delivery.

B. Definition of ZIP code maintenance

The ZIP Code Maintenance operation is an automated or manual process used to improve the accuracy of ZIP codes on benefit checks using information from the ZIP Code Master File. This operation also annotates ZIP +4 data to the MBR and SSR.

C. Description of ZIP code

1. ZIP +4 data

The ZIP +4 data is the last four digits of a 9-digit ZIP code. ZIP +4 data represent United States Postal Service (USPS) sector or segment numbers.

2. ZIP Delivery Point Code (ZDPC) for bar coding

The ZDPC consists of two USPS authorized digits representing the last two digits of the house or box number and a one-position control character as determined by the ZIP +4 Software. These three additional ZIP Code data items are used as part of the USPS Bar Code and are not shown as part of the 9-digit ZIP Code in the address. During the ZIP Maintenance Operation, the ZDPC automatically generates and annotates to the SSR and MBR.

3. ZIP code master file

The ZIP Code Master File contains comprehensive ZIP Code information, Post Office data, and corresponding ZIP Codes.

NOTE: This file is based on the USPS database of address information and is used by ZIP Code software. This file updates monthly.

4. ZIP code and ZIP-ADD-ON fields (Title II)

The ZIP Code and ZIP-ADD-ON fields are on the MBR and house ZIP Code data. Five digits are housed in the ZIP Code field and ZIP+4 data are housed in the ZIP-ADD-ON field.

5. ZIP code flag (Title II and National Change of Address (NCOA) processing)

The ZIP Code Flag represents a special designation for the ZIP Code. The flag is used to override automatic processing action or to indicate why the system is unable to derive the ZIP-ADD-ON portion of the ZIP Code. In addition, the ZIP Code Flag is used to reflect the status of NCOA processing. For an explanation of ZIP code flag uses, refer to GN 02605.710 and SM 00510.115C.

6. ZIP code flag date (Title II)

The ZIP Code Flag Date is the month and year the flag applies to the MBR.

D. References

GN 02605.900, Postal Service Addressing Standards

Publication 28 - Postal Addressing Standards, April 2010, USPS


To Link to this section - Use this URL:
http://policy.ssa.gov/poms.nsf/lnx/0202605700
GN 02605.700 - ZIP Co