Postal Inspection Service[PIS] Law and Legal Definition

Postal Inspection Service (PIS) is a part of the U.S. Postal Service and is responsible for the enforcement of laws regarding mail fraud. The PIS has the authority to criminally prosecute offenders and is also authorized to close their business. The PIS provides protection to consumers from fraudulent offers by stamping "fraudulent," "refused," or "out-of business" on envelopes addressed to the company in question and returning them to the senders.

PIS investigations can be categorized into seven types of investigative teams and functions which includes:

1. Fraud;

2. External Crime & Violent Crime Teams;

3. Prohibited Mailing Investigations;

4. Aviation and Homeland Security;

5. Revenue Investigations;

6. International Investigations and Global Security;

7. Joint Task Force Investigations.

The main purpose of the PIS is to carry out investigations relating to postal fraud. However, the PIS’s duty to investigate is not mandatory. [Sewald v. Pyatt & Silvestri, Chtd., 161 F. Supp. 2d 1074 (N.D. Cal. 2001)]