Start the signature line on the fourth line below Sincerely. Type or stamp the following information: (1) name of signer in all capital letters, (2) military grade (if any) spelled out, (3) functional title, and (4) By direction of the Commanding Officer if the individual usually signs by direction. The by-direction line may be omitted on a routine business letter that neither makes a commitment nor takes an official stand. Womens names may begin with Miss, Mrs., or Ms. in parentheses.
1. General. This section explains how to address letter-size envelopes for unclassified correspondence. Ask at your mail room about types, costs, and instructions on such special services as registered mail. Also ask about bulk mailing as well as pouch and messenger services; these methods of moving the mail require few envelopes or mailing labels.
2. Envelopes. To avoid the extra charge for mailing large envelopes, fold correspondence and send it in letter-size envelopes. When you have several pieces of correspondence for one address, try to send it all in a single large envelope. To prevent tearing your correspondence or jamming postal equipment, use envelopes only slightly larger than their contents and press out the air before sealing them. Correct minor errors in an address instead of discarding the envelope.
3. Addresses. Start an address halfway down the envelope and a third of the way from the left. Place the address parallel to the long sides. Type, stamp, machine-print, or hand-print the address. Use only black or dark blue ink. When using a rubber stamp, avoid smudging the address or leaving marks from the stamps edges. Show your return address in the upper left corner of the envelope.
4. ZIP Code. Put a ZIP Code or FPO/APO number on all addresses. On 1 July 1984 a ZIP + 4 became the standard code for all Department of Defense (DOD) components. ZIP + 4 is composed of the current five-digit ZIP Code plus a four-digit add-on. The additional four digits are separated from the existing five-digit code by a hyphen. The first two of these digits identify broad geographic areas within ZIP Code zones. The last two digits represent the smallest geographic unit to which mechanized mail distribution can be made. For more detailed information on ZIP + 4 refer to OPNAVINST 5218.8, Implementation of the Nine Digit ZIP Code System (ZIP + 4).
5. State Abbreviations. The two-letter abbreviations must be used on envelopes. They may be used in letters wherever a state appears as part of an address.
1. Identifying Military Personnel. If positive identification is essential, fully identify the member when you first mention him or her. That identification often appears in the subject block of a standard letter or the first paragraph of a business letter. In later references to the member, simply use the rank or rate and last name.
a. For full identification of Navy personnel, use (1) abbreviated rank or rate, (2) first name, middle initial if any, and last name, (3) branch of service, (4) Social Security number, and (5) designator for an officer.
CAPT Robert W. Dole, USN, 123-45-6789/1110
b. For full identification of Marine Corps personnel, use (1) unabbreviated grade, (2) first name, middle initial if any, and last name, (3) Social Security number without hyphens, (4) military occupational specialty, and (5) branch of service.
Captain Matthew T. Johnson 123 45 6789/0430 USMC.
2. Limits on Using Social Security Numbers. When corresponding with DOD, do not use the Social Security number of a military member or civilian employee unless essential for identification. When corresponding outside DOD, dont use the Social Security number of a military member or civilian employee at all, except if the individual involved gives permission or the incoming communication already shows the Social Security number.
3. Writing to Higher Authority
a. Navy Personnel. Prepare your letter on plain bond paper in standard-letter format