(a) The Postal Service may suspend and/or revoke authorization to manufacture and/or distribute any or all of a provider's approved Postage Evidencing System(s) if the provider engages in any unlawful scheme or enterprise, fails to comply with any provision in this Part 501, fails to implement instructions issued in accordance with any final decision issued by the Postal Service within its authority over Postage Evidencing Systems or if the Postage Evidencing System or infrastructure of the provider is determined to constitute an unacceptable risk to Postal Service revenues.
(b) The decision to suspend or revoke pursuant to paragraph (a) of this section shall be based upon the nature and circumstances of the violation (e.g. whether the violation was willful, whether the provider voluntarily admitted to the violation, or cooperated with the Postal Service, whether the provider implemented successful remedial measures) and on the provider's performance history. Before determining that a provider's authorization to manufacture and/or distribute Postage Evidencing Systems should be suspended or revoked, the procedures in paragraph (c) of this section shall be followed.
(c) Suspension or revocation procedures:
(1) Upon determination by the Postal Service that a provider is in violation of provisions of this Part 501, or that its Postal Evidencing System poses an unreasonable risk to postal revenue, PTM, acting on behalf of the Postal Service shall issue a written notice of proposed suspension citing the specific conditions or deficiencies for which suspension of authorization to manufacture and/or distribute a specific Postage Evidencing System or class of Postage Evidencing Systems may be imposed. Except in cases of willful violation, the provider shall be given an opportunity to correct deficiencies and achieve compliance with all requirements within a time limit corresponding to the potential revenue risk to postal revenue.
(2) In cases of willful violation, or if the Postal Service determines that the provider has failed to correct cited deficiencies within the specified time limit, PTM shall issue a written notice of suspension setting forth the facts and reasons for the decision to suspend and the effective date if a written defense is not presented as provided in paragraph (d) of this section.
(3) The notice shall also advise the provider of its right to file a response under paragraph (d) of this section. If a written response is not presented in a timely manner the suspension may go into effect. The suspension shall remain in effect for ninety (90) calendar days unless revoked or modified by PTM.
(4) If, upon consideration of the defense as provided in paragraph (d) of this section, the Postal Service deems that the suspension is warranted, the suspension shall remain in effect for up to 90 days unless withdrawn by the Postal Service, as provided in paragraph (c)(5)(iii) of this section.
(5) At the end of the ninety (90) day suspension, the Postal Service may:
(i) Extend the suspension in order to allow more time for investigation or to allow the provider time to correct the problem.
(ii) Make a determination to revoke authorization to manufacture and/or distribute a Postage Evidencing System in part or in whole.
(iii) Withdraw the suspension based on identification and implementation of a satisfactory solution to the problem.
(d) The provider may present the Postal Service with a written defense to any suspension or revocation determination within thirty (30) calendar days of receiving the written notice (unless a shorter period is deemed necessary). The defense must include all supporting evidence and state with specificity the reasons why the order should not be imposed.
(e) After receipt and consideration of the defense, PTM shall advise the provider of its decision and the facts and reasons for it. The decision shall be effective on receipt unless provided otherwise. The decision shall also advise the provider that it may be appealed within thirty (30) calendar days of receipt (unless a shorter time frame is deemed necessary). If an appeal is not filed in a timely manner, the decision of PTM shall become a final decision of the Postal Service. The appeal may be filed with the Chief Marketing Officer of the Postal Service and must include all supporting evidence and state with specificity the reasons the provider believes that the decision is erroneous. The decision of the Chief Marketing Officer shall constitute a final decision of the Postal Service.
(f) An order or final decision under this section does not preclude any other criminal or civil statutory, common law, or administrative remedy that is available by law to the Postal Service, the United States, or any other person or entity.
Title 39 published on 2012-07-01
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