NCOA (National Change of Address)

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As a NCOA Full Service Provider licensee of the USPS lighthouse list receives approximately 160 million records, representing all permanent change-of-address records filed over the past 48 months. This data is updated weekly from the USPS. We use this data to perform NCOA processing on your mailing list. Other providers choose to only license the limited NCOA product, and therefore only have access to approximately 60 million records representing moves over the past 18 months. Only a Full Service provider like lighthouse list COMPANYis able to identify and correct the most change-of-address records on your file. The NCOA service is designed to reduce undeliverable-as-addressed (UAA) mail by correcting input addresses prior to mailing. Since 1986, Move Update predecessors such as ACS™ Service, National Change of Address (NCOA) and the FASTforward® system have saved mailers millions of dollars that otherwise would have been wasted in materials and postage. The NCOA service continues this trend and, like its predecessors, provides the following.

Benefits to Mailers:

  • Reduces undeliverable mail by providing the most current address information for matches made to the NCOA file
  • Prevents re-mailings after address corrections are received because the address correction is applied prior to the mailing
  • Reduces mailer costs by reducing the number of undeliverable mailpieces by using the most current address information
  • Provides the opportunity for faster product/service marketing through accurate mail deliver

In addition to the change-of-address information, the NCOA service also utilizes Return Codes to provide explanation of match and non-match status. Return Codes which indicate that a match was obtained are accompanied by a new address or undeliverable status. Return Codes which indicate a match was not obtained provide the reason a match could not be made to the NCOA file. The analysis of Return Codes can help you determine the deliverability of specific address records. Mailing lists that are processed through the NCOA service meet the USPS Move Update requirement for a period of 95 days from the date of processing. This requirement applies to all First-Class Mail® and all Standard Mail®. If you mail on a regular basis we recommend establishing a processing schedule to ensure that your mailing list is in compliance with the USPS requirement. If you have questions about how this requirement may affect you please call us at 1-800-684-2180.


  • CASS™ standardization of your input address
    • ZIP + 4® Coding
    • Carrier Route
    • DPV® return code and DPV footnotes
    • LACSLink®
    • SuiteLink™
  • NCOA Return Code
    • Used to identify if a new address is available, move no forwarding address, PO Box closed, move outside the USA, or details of why an NCOA match could not be made
  • New mailing address, if a match was made with a new forwarding address from NCOA processing
  • Move effective date (month and year)
  • Move type (Individual, Family, Business)
  • Your original input record
  • The NCOA database is updated weekly.