Your source for the latest updates, news and data on PSA and the Hobby
PSA has now expanded the company’s card grading services to include several previously restricted releases. Starting this month, PSA will be accepting card submissions that contain metal Pokémon cards, confirmed “sketch” cards from major manufacturers, and all remaining Star basketball card releases from the 1980s. For more details about this announcement, please read this article.
PSA’s Fight Against Counterfeiting
At Professional Sports Authenticator (PSA), we are committed to protecting our customers from counterfeit products. The recent case involving Mayo Gilbert McNeil highlights the importance of our efforts to combat this issue, and we are proud to have worked closely with the FBI and other law enforcement agencies to take him down and hold those responsible for producing and distributing counterfeit products accountable for their actions.
We understand that counterfeiting is a serious issue in the hobby, and we are always working on security innovations with our holders and services. Our commitment to product integrity is unwavering, and we have invested heavily in a number of security features for our slabs to ensure that our grading products are as secure as possible. These features include advanced holograms, proprietary labeling, and tamper-evident cases that prevent any attempt to remove or replace the item, as well as images available publicly via certificate verification.
We are also continuing to explore new ways to prevent counterfeit products from entering the market and to ensure that our customers receive only the highest quality authenticated and graded products. We encourage customers to only purchase from authorized retailers and dealers to ensure authenticity and easy recourse if necessary. Our network of authorized dealers buys, sells, and submits items on behalf of the consumer, and they are committed to providing a high level of service and expertise.
We want our customers to feel confident in the authenticity of their graded items. As part of our ongoing efforts to combat counterfeiting, we have developed a number of tools that customers can use to verify the authenticity of their cards. Our online Certification Verification page and PSA app allow customers to scan the barcode on their item and verify its authenticity. We also offer a network of Authorized Dealers that customers can rely on to ensure they are receiving authentic PSA-graded items.
We understand that the recent case involving Mayo Gilbert McNeil may have caused concern for some collectors, and we want to assure them that this was carried out by external criminals and not by anyone within the PSA organization. We will continue to work closely with law enforcement agencies to prevent counterfeit products from entering the market.
If you suspect that you have purchased counterfeit products, please visit the Customer Request Center (CRC) online portal in your PSA account to file a Quality Assurance Request. Once filed, a CRC representative will provide instructions on how to submit your card for Item Verification free of charge. If after inspection your item is determined to be a counterfeit, PSA will connect you to the authorities directly. We are committed to working with our customers and the hobby as a whole to prevent fraud and protect the integrity of the collectibles industry.
In conclusion, we want to thank our customers for choosing PSA for their grading and authentication needs. We remain committed to upholding the highest standards of product integrity and ensuring that our customers receive only the best possible service and expertise.
Dear Ludkins UK Customers,
Since late 2022, PSA has been diligently working to establish a safe and efficient process to return to their rightful owners all trading cards submitted to PSA for grading on their behalf by former dealer Ludkins UK.
To achieve this as quickly as possible, PSA began the process by returning the cards submitted by Ludkins’ largest group submitters first. Among the top largest group submitters were FlashCards and PokeGeoDude, to whom we’ve already started shipping cards directly. Although not all cards have been shipped to them, we are sending shipments regularly.
Now that this first wave of shipments is underway, we are proud to announce that Dan’s Pokestop is now an official PSA dealer and PSA has formally contracted them to coordinate the return of the remaining cards through their new shop.
Starting this month, PSA will be shipping Dan’s Pokestop thousands of cards monthly to sort, verify ownership, and coordinate return shipments for those that have filled out the Ludkins Google Form and/or reached out via the [email protected] group email.
While we understand many of you have been waiting a long time, we must continue to ask for patience as we begin this process. In particular, we ask that you be considerate of the fact that Dan’s Pokestop will not be receiving all cards at once (for insurance and tracking purposes). They will be tackling orders as they receive them from PSA, but rest assured that our team will be shipping them the oldest orders first to be fair to everyone across the board.
We also want to clarify that any cards that are still raw and in Mr. Ludkins’ possession will not be handled by Dan’s Pokestop. We advise you to contact Ludkins directly for those cards as those were never sent to PSA and are not part of this arrangement given that we have no submission records for those cards.
As mentioned in past emails, we will provide regular updates through the PSA Communications Center. In the meantime, please be on the lookout for an email from Dan’s Pokestop to coordinate your return shipment.
The PSA Team
Dear Ludkins UK Customers,
On January 1, 2023, PSA officially took legal possession of all the cards submitted through Ludkins UK. In an effort to return these cards to their rightful owners as quickly as possible, PSA will be tackling the top three largest submitters to Ludkins first.
As of today, we have successfully pulled the submissions that were sent in by these three group submitters and will be preparing the return of their orders over the coming months. Since they submitted on behalf of many of you and know exactly who the owners of those cards are from their own records, the plan is to have them handle separating their own customer submissions and return them directly from their locations. We feel this is the most efficient and secure way to handle the returns to start.
These three group submitters will be tasked with the responsibility of ensuring the safe return of your cards, so we ask that you recognize their efforts by giving them ample time to handle the returns and wait for them to reach out to you once they have the cards in hand and are ready to ship the cards back.
Once this first round of orders are returned, we will move forward with our plans to work with a previously mentioned UK partner who has now been contracted to handle the rest of the returns that were sent to Ludkins. On their behalf, we also ask for patience as they will be sorting thousands of cards on a monthly basis in an effort to safely return them to their rightful owners. The name of this dealer will be announced as soon as we mail out the first shipment, but we again ask that you wait for them to reach out to you as they will not receive all the cards at once due to the large number involved here and because of insurance purposes.
Thank you for your continued patience and support. We will follow up again soon with a status update.
The PSA Team
Dear Marx Cards Customers,
Over the last six months, many of you should have received direct communication from PSA which has been helping process the return of your cards.
During that time period, we have been able to ship 90% of the cards; we currently only have about 4,800 cards left in the building and that’s great news.
As it stands, we are still waiting for responses from many customers, which includes their card images and/or card lists. If for some reason you have not received an email from someone on our team, please email [email protected] as soon as possible with a reference to “Marx Cards” in the subject line. We are filtering those emails out from our general Customer Service inbox and escalating them to an internal focus group to help resolve the situation as quickly as possible.
We hope that by the end of February all remaining cards will be accounted for and returned to their rightful owners, thus bringing an end to this unfortunate situation.
The PSA Team
Today, Jan. 4, 2023, PSA is happy to unveil new card-grading prices across the board. We are rolling out simplified service levels with faster turnaround times and higher declared values. The following price changes are now in effect for PSA Collectors Club members only: Value Bulk ($19/card, 20-card minimum, $499 max declared value *MDV) per card, estimated turnaround time of 65 business days); and Dual Service Bulk ($25/card, 20-card minimum, $499 MDV, estimated turnaround time of 75 business days).
For all collectors, the following pricing updates are available with no card minimums required: Value ($25/card, $499 MDV, estimated 65-day turnaround); Value Plus ($40/card, $499 MDV, estimated 20-day turnaround); Regular ($75/card, $1,499 MDV, estimated 20-day turnaround). To become a Collectors Club member and gain access to grading specials, join now.
Dear PSA UK Collectors,
Thank you to all who have provided information through the online form we created a month ago and those who have reached out directly through the email we created for this special case ([email protected]).
In response to the many emails we've received, we are sending this general update to explain that we are still in the process of legally taking possession of the cards from Mr. Ludkins in order to engage a third party (another dealer in the UK) to assist with the return of cards to their owners.
Mr. Ludkins has been formally notified that on December 31, 2022, PSA will be taking possession of all orders on his account, unless full payment is received from him by that deadline. PSA has also requested he provide the missing information from his order list (e.g., customer emails and phone numbers), so we can use this information to facilitate the return of cards to owners. In conjunction, as stated above, we are in the process of engaging a third party to outline the terms of the return process before we can get started.
Once we reach the deadline we have set for Mr. Ludkins and have finalized the arrangements with the new UK dealer, PSA plans to start the process of mailing packages (in small shipments) to the new dealer beginning in January 2023. Given the number of cards under the account and missing customer information, please be advised that the process of returning cards to owners could take 6-12 months at minimum.
We will provide an update monthly on our Communications page moving forward. If you have any questions, please contact us at any time at [email protected]
Collectors (PSA, PCGS, and WATA) is aware of a very small number of packages that have been reported as delivered to our headquarters in California, that were not received nor ever present at our facility. We are working with the United States Postal Service (USPS) and Postal Inspector to identify and resolve these discrepancies and provide solutions for the customers that have been affected.
We would like to remind our customers who submit packages to Collectors to always use the safest practices in packaging and mailing items to us. This includes securely packing items for submission, not referencing “high value”, “sports cards”, or other indicative phrases on the outside of the shipping carton, and ensuring that all USPS deliveries are addressed to our post office box address: CU RECEIVING, PO Box 6180, Newport Beach, California, 92658. If you wish to ship with FedEx please address those packages to: 1610 E St. Andrew Pl, Suite 150, Santa Ana, CA 92705. Those wishing to avoid shipping all together can submit at one of the many events we attend across the country. For up to date information about which shows we attend, please visit our website.
If you have further questions about submitting items to Collectors or believe you may have been affected by these delivery issues, please do not hesitate to contact us by email at [email protected] with your tracking number and submission order number.
Dear PSA UK Collectors,
Effective immediately, PSA is discontinuing its relationship with Ludkins Collectables (“Ludkins”). Ludkins is no longer an authorized PSA dealer or allowed to use the name “PSA UK”. Ludkins has failed to pay PSA for its services while PSA believes that Ludkins has already collected payment from its customers. Even though PSA has not been paid by Ludkins, all cards that have been received by PSA (last ordered received September 28, 2022) have been graded and are in PSA’s possession. Furthermore, PSA offered to return the cards to Ludkins (despite lack of payment) so that Ludkins could return the cards to their customers, which unfortunately was met with resistance and further demands. Our focus is now determining a safe path to return these cards to their rightful owners without Ludkins’ involvement.
Unfortunately, Ludkins has not shared any details with PSA on which cards belong to which customers, so PSA is currently unable to individually engage with Ludkins’ customers to return their cards directly. To return the cards to the correct customers in the safest way possible, PSA will move forward with a formal disposition process for all unpaid orders submitted from Ludkins UK. Once complete, this disposition process will allow PSA to take legal possession of the cards and, with the help of a third party, return them to their rightful owners. We will provide timing updates in future communications. As our number one goal is to return the cards to their owners, PSA will not be asking Ludkins customers to pay again for grading services and they will only be asked to cover return shipping.
Looking ahead, we are making changes to increase the confidence in PSA and our dealer program to collectors in the UK and around the globe. If you are a customer of Ludkins and believe that you have cards that have not yet been returned, then please use this Google Form Link so that we can begin to collect information that will aid us in returning your cards. For more information about PSA news and announcements, be sure to follow our official social media account, @PSAcard, on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.
Thank you again for being valued customers.
The PSA Team
An organizational realignment is taking place this week at Collectors. Kevin Lenane, who has served as PSA President for the past year, is now taking on the role of Vice President of PSA Sales. Kevin will transition to his new role where he can maintain his strong relationships with the PSA dealer community while remaining on the East Coast. During his tenure as President, Kevin led PSA out from under its massive backlog of trading card submissions and directed the return of all service levels that were suspended due to the 2021 backlog. He also led the relaunch of PSA’s Collectors Club and the company's continued capacity expansion efforts with new grading operations being built in New Jersey and Japan.
Taking over as PSA’s new President is Ryan Hoge, who joined the company in July 2021 as Chief Product Officer at Collectors. Ryan, a lifelong card collector who worked previously at Microsoft for 16 years in a variety of leadership roles, has led the Product team on multiple fronts since his arrival and was instrumental in growing that team and the successful launch of the Collectors Vault in July. Ryan will be relocating from Seattle with his family to work full-time in our Santa Ana, California, headquarters. Eric Horne, the Vice President of Product Management at Collectors, will take over leadership of the Product team. Eric previously worked at Amazon for nine years in various product orgs and has led the Collectors Customer Experience Product team since he joined in September 2021.
Congratulations to each of these individuals on their new roles.
Today, PSA has dropped its Bulk service level to $18 per card, which is being offered exclusively to Collectors Club members. The estimated turnaround time for Bulk orders is 120 calendar days and submissions must include a minimum of 25 cards with a declared value limit of $199 per card. For efficiency purposes, collectors are asked to place their orders via one of two different Bulk submission options: 1.) 1979 and older or 2.) 1980 to present. This now represents the lowest cost service level PSA has to offer. Note: Crossovers and Review services are excluded from Bulk and Value. Click here to learn more about joining the Collectors Club and submitting at the Bulk service level.In addition, for a limited time only, PSA is now hosting a $15 TCG Bulk service level special for Collectors Club members who are Trading Card Game aficionados. All TCGs are welcome. A 10-card minimum per submission order is required with a declared value limit of $199 per card. These orders will also have a 120-day estimated turnaround time.
Today, September 8, 2022, marks the return of PSA’s Bulk service level at $22 per card, an option being offered exclusively to Collectors Club members. The estimated turnaround time for Bulk orders is between 120 and 150 calendar days and submissions must include a minimum of 25 cards with a declared value limit of $199 per card. For efficiency purposes, collectors are asked to place their orders via one of two different Bulk submission options: 1.) 1995 and older issues or 2.) 1996 to present. This now represents the lowest cost service level PSA has to offer. Click here to learn more about joining the Collectors Club and submitting at the Bulk service level.
Effective immediately, all PSA Collectors Club members can submit any card issued from 1996 to present with a Declared Value of $499 or less in a Value submission, with no minimum number of cards required. We anticipate Value orders of any size being processed in 120 calendar days or less. Click here to learn more about joining the Collectors Club and submitting at the Value service level.
PSA is pleased to announce the return of its Value service level at $30 per card, which is now available exclusively for Collectors Club members. The Estimated Turnaround Time for Value orders is 120 calendar days and submissions must include a minimum of 20 cards with a declared value limit of $499 per card. In addition, PSA is requiring customers to only submit cards from 1996 to 2022 at the Value level. Read this blog entry for more information.
PSA is happy to announce the return of our $50 Economy Service Level for all Collectors Club members and that we’re tracking to be finished with the backlog by early Fall. Complete Through Dates will now be replaced by Estimated Turnaround Times for Economy Service levels and higher. Read this entry on the PSA Blog to catch up on all the good news.
IMPORTANT SHIPPING GUIDANCE - SHIPPING/GPS TRACKER TAGS
FedEx and other third-party shipping services have now introduced GPS tracker tags as an option to send with your packages for more thorough tracking. Individuals can also purchase off-the-shelf tracker tags to include in their shipments. FedEx trackers are returned to FedEx within 24 hours after they arrive at PSA. If you send an order to PSA with a tracker tag you purchased, please be advised of the following:
IMPORTANT SHIPPING GUIDANCE
Package tampering is on the rise. PSA is doing our part to protect customers by closely inspecting incoming packages and rejecting those that raise a concern. In many cases, we’re rejecting packages to be cautious and to ensure that our customers can file a claim with their shipper if indeed there is an issue.
Here’s what you can do to ensure your package is accepted by PSA.
Other important suggestions:
Pricing for Dual service – evaluating and assessing both the card and the autograph – has been adjusted to reflect a 20% premium over the standard card grading fees. This change reflects the additional time and resources required compared to grading just the card, or grading just the autograph. For more details please review our service pricing page.
Based on further research, PSA has announced that it has resumed grading certain cards lacking rarity symbols from the 1996 Japanese Pokémon Basic Set. Two specific cards from the set, which PSA had halted grading on due to a lack of reliable sources for card numbering confirmation, are now eligible for grading: Venusaur and Raichu. Read this entry on the PSA Blog to get caught up on this recent development.
PSA is now using premium PSA-branded external sleeves when returning cards submitted at Super Express level and higher, offering greater protection and enhanced aesthetics. External sleeves are one of the many product enhancements in the works from PSA.
PSA continues to devote over 80% of our resources to processing the backlog. Due to continuous capacity expansion, we are now able to bring back the ‘Regular’ Service Level. Regular is for cards valued at $1499 or less and will be processed in less than 90 days door-to-door at a price of $100 per card. With the return of Regular, PSA is taking another step towards bringing back lower priced service levels in 2022.
PSA surprises Collectors Club members with a 5 hour Economy Allocation Event, opening up the Economy Service Level to give members a chance to receive a 5 card submission allocation. This is the first time Economy pricing has been available since October 2020. Follow PSAcard on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram to be certain to hear about upcoming allocation events.
Collectors Universe, parent company of PSA, is happy to announce the acquisition of Card Ladder, a best-in-class valuation platform. This move bolsters CU’s industry-leading catalog of pricing information, historical transaction data, population reports and timely content and advances CU's commitment to provide tools to help collectors buy, sell and trade their sports cards with more confidence. Follow this link for more information.
We are aware of an interaction between the PSA holder and the metal substrate of 2021 Pokémon Celebrations Ultra-Premium Collection cards. While we work on a new encapsulation technique for these cards, we are temporarily suspending the grading of the issue. All in-house orders will receive a “N9” No Grade designation and will not be assessed a grading fee. If you own a PSA-graded 2021 Pokémon Celebrations Ultra-Premium Collection card that has been affected by PSA encapsulation, please contact [email protected].
Recently, we’ve begun using internal sleeves to protect thin stickers and cards from moving within the holder. Ever since, we’ve been contacted by a few collectors concerned about what appears to be moisture trapped within their case. The unusual occurrence is referred to as Newton’s Rings, a phenomenon that can occur when two plastics come in contact with each other. In reality, the area is completely free of moisture. Read all about this peculiar light illusion on the PSA Blog.
A changing of the guard took place today at Collectors Universe (CU). Steve Sloan, who has served as PSA President since 2018, was named Chief Marketing Officer for CU and will oversee all such efforts for PSA and the Collectors Universe family of brands. Steve has passed the baton to Kevin Lenane, who has been serving as PSA’s Vice President of Product since April, and who will now take on the role of PSA President. Read all about the organizational realignment right here.
All orders submitted under the ‘Regular’ service level have now been processed and shipped back to customers. There are no Regular orders remaining in the backlog. For the latest progress on Value and other service levels, check out the Complete Through Date chart updated daily.
This month’s update from PSA President Steve Sloan includes news of a price reduction, the latest on our capacity growth, a spotlight on the Set Registry Awards and some very cool news for game-used bat collectors. Read all about it in the September President’s Letter..
PSA has announced the 2021 Set Registry Award winners. Browse through some of the most incredible collections in the world: Best Collection of the Year, Best Set, Best Rookie Set, Sports, Non-Sports, Tickets, Autographs. It’s all here. Check out the best of the best from PSA’s 20th Annual Set Registry Awards.
The PSA team has just returned from the 41st National in Chicago. A jam-packed booth. On-site grading. One hundred happy contest winners. A steady flow of job applicants. All while reducing the backlog back at the office. Read all about it in PSA President Steve Sloan's August Customer Update.
PSA is gearing up for the 2021 National Sports Collectors Convention in Chicago (July 28 through August 1). We will be offering on-site authentication, grading and encapsulation for all cards including crossovers, reviews and dual-service. Read the announcement for all the details on services offered at the show.
PSA continues to devote nearly all of its operational resources to processing the backlog. Express returns today but most other services remain suspended. PSA President Steve Sloan explains the rationale in his July President's Letter.
Complete Through Dates provide greater visibility into order processing progress as the CTD advances forward toward your order’s Entered date. Read our latest post on CTDs & Batch FIFO for greater understanding on the effects of Batch FIFO on order completion.
In this month’s update, PSA President Steve Sloan shares an order entry milestone, unveils PSA’s Customer Request Center, introduces a new policy on Qualifiers and much, much more. Read the June President’s Letter for all the pertinent details.
As part of our efforts to continually improve operational efficiency as we work through the backlog of orders, PSA will no longer require submitters to decide whether to request “No Qualifiers” on items in their submission. Characteristics such as Centering, Staining, Print Defects and Focus will be assigned at the grader’s discretion, and most typically will impact the numerical grade rather than carrying a qualifier. There are exceptions and we encourage collectors to review the updated policy on the PSA Grading Standards page.
In this month’s update, PSA President Steve Sloan shares the latest news on operations and order fulfillment progress, details on the acquisition of Genamint, Inc., introduces new PSA executives and a whole lot more. Read the May President’s Letter for all the details.
PSA announces the acquisition of Genamint to integrate next-generation technology into the grading process. Advancements in imaging and card diagnostics are key initiatives for PSA as we apply technology to improve efficiency, accuracy and capacity. Read the acquisition announcement for additional details.
PSA President Steve Sloan’s monthly update to customers announces the suspension of Value, Regular and Express service levels. Read the April President’s Letter for details.
All active Collectors Club members will have their memberships automatically extended to match the duration of the Value suspension. This extension will ensure existing members have twelve full months to utilize their annual Collectors Club benefits. Additionally, unredeemed vouchers will still be accepted during the suspension of service.
As part of the continued effort to streamline operations and get customers their cards back faster, PSA has temporarily removed the ‘Minimum Grade’ option from the Submission process. This move follows the recent decision to suspend the Crossover grading service, the primary application for selecting a Minimum Grade. PSA will post an announcement upon the return of the Crossover service and the Minimum Grade option.
PSA President Steve Sloan’s monthly update to customers details the CU acquisition, Complete Through Dates, pricing changes, and more. Read the March President’s Letter for details.
To focus on the PSA backlog, the Custom Encapsulation service has been suspended. PSA will make an announcement upon its return.
The December installment of Steve Sloan’s monthly update to PSA customers looks back on all we experienced during the past 12 months, both as a company and an industry. Read the December President’s Letter for all the details.
The November installment of Steve Sloan’s monthly update to PSA customers details the expansion of our operations facilities, the latest on our hiring efforts, the newest enhancements to the communication of our order process, and more. Read the November President’s Letter for all the details.
In response to the widespread increase in trading card valuations, PSA raises the maximum Declared Value to $199 on any card submitted under the four Value Services; Ultra-Modern, Modern, Vintage and TCG. Combined with the recent reduction in the minimum Value order size to only 20 cards, PSA is making it easier for collectors to take advantage of our lowest price points.
PSA releases a formal Group Submission page that guides interested collectors to the PSA Dealer Directory. These dealers have signed a formal code of conduct agreement with PSA and are approved to manage and submit group submissions. Read the announcement for more details.
PSA restructures Value pricing while lowering minimum order size for the service. Ultra-Modern pricing is now $15 per card with 20-card minimum order quantities. Modern pricing is now $12 per card with 20-card minimum order quantities. Read the announcement for more details.
PSA sells out of the Gold and Platinum Collectors Club memberships for the remainder of the calendar year. Current members who have not yet submitted valid vouchers are able to do so prior to membership expiration. Read the announcement for more details.
Due to overwhelming demand, PSA suspends Economy service for both the trading card and dual authentication and grading services. This suspension will allow PSA to catch up on impacted turnaround times for these services. Please continue to check this page for updates.
PSA releases a new Appraisal Service. After years of customers asking, PSA at last provides a formal answer to the age-old collector question, ‘what is my item worth?’ The service is available only to items that have been certified by PSA or PSA/DNA. The PSA Appraisal service will expand to include uncertified items submitted to PSA or PSA/DNA for authentication and grading on January 1, 2021.
2020 PSA Set Registry Award Winners have been announced! Judges have selected over 30 winners, including 10 new Hall of Fame inductees, from the nearly 180,000 registered sets. Additionally, 14,468 sets have received designation as the ‘Best of the Registry’, the largest total ever. Please visit the 2020 Awards page and the Hall of Fame page to see all of the award winning collections.
Collectors Universe hires industry veteran Jamie Kiskis as the company's first Vice President of Product Development. Jamie will focus primarily on expanding the PSA Set Registry and providing a better experience for both current and new users.
PSA releases a new website with a cleaner design and better user interface. The new site makes it easier to find information about our services and instructions on how to submit.
PSA’s New Jersey office stops accepting drop off submission for PSA trading card, ticket, pack, professional bat, professional glove, and ring/award/trophy authentication and grading services. However, the office will honor previously scheduled appointments for those services until November 30, 2020.
PSA implements a 5% service charge to submissions with items not submitted in the same order they are listed on their submission forms. Items not submitted in order cause delays in the Receiving department and delay the overall grading process.
PSA launches a new Submission ID label for orders processed through the Online Submission Center. This allows customers to print out and adhere a label to this side of the package instead of writing the Service Level name. When packages arrive to PSA, the barcode is scanned, and the customer is notified via email.
Estimated Turnaround Times
by Service Level
Estimated Turnaround Times are estimates only and not guaranteed. A service level’s Turnaround Time is the estimated number of business days that an order will be completed and shipped back, once scanned into our facility. These times are based on, and may be impacted by, PSA's submission volume and capacity and other unforeseen circumstances. Turnaround Times may change rapidly without notice as conditions change.
|Service Level||Estimated Turnaround Time*
(in business days)
|Premium +||3 Days|
|Super Express||3 Days|
|Value Plus||20 Days|
|Value Bulk**||65 Days|
* Estimated Turnaround Times are estimates only and not guaranteed. These times are based on, and may be impacted by, PSA's submission volume and capacity and other unforeseen circumstances. Turnaround Times may change rapidly without notice as conditions change.
** Exclusive for Collectors Club members. Join Now.
It took PSA almost seven years to reach 1 million cards certified, a milestone that the company surpassed in 1998. Since that time, PSA customers have submitted at least 1,000,000 collectibles for certification every year. In 2020, that number grew to over 7.5 million. Incredibly, to start 2021, PSA has averaged over 1,000,000 cards received each month for the first three months of the year.
In January 2020, PSA's parent company Collectors Universe employed 421 team members. Today we stand 783 people strong and growing daily. We’ve been adding more than 2 people per business day for more than 6 months and we’re still going.
How many companies can say they doubled capacity in 2020? PSA can. In fact, PSA’s grading capacity has tripled since 2018. Plus, during 2020 and the early stages of 2021, PSA has added over 120,000 square feet of new office space to ensure our operations continue to expand.
Expanding grading capacity is a multi-faceted endeavor. Read on for details on some of the steps we are taking.
We are adding to our team daily. We have numerous open positions on our Careers page. If you are interested in joining the team at PSA, or if you know someone who would be a good fit, please apply.
Collectors Universe is a healthy, growing company with locations in both California and New Jersey. We offer 401(K) matching, and medical and dental benefits. Even if you do not see an exact fit with your professional background, still do apply. We are always looking for passionate, energetic, and hard-working collectors to join our team.
We have multiple initiatives in the works to apply technology to expand our grading capacity. Robotics, Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning…regardless of what you call it, technology will play an ever-increasing role in streamlining key steps throughout the submission process. Automation to streamline receiving. Software for image recognition and card identification. Machine Learning to fine-tune quality control. Throughout 2021 and beyond, PSA will be introducing advanced technology to continually improve safe handling and faster order processing.
Another important step is the implementation and adherence to Lean manufacturing principles. Throughout 2020, we systematically reconfigured every department in our operation to optimize workflow. The results were impressive and immediate. Each step in the process saw capacity gains of at least 80%, with many departments gaining even greater production, compared to a year ago.
PSA is eager to answer the surge in demand, working on multiple concurrent continuous improvement projects to scale our operation. PSA has implemented numerous holistic changes to the way we process orders. Eliminating paper submissions and pay-by-check for greater automation. Segmenting Value submissions for greater specialization. Introducing Submission ID Labels for better order tracking. Many other smaller internal changes have been made as well as we seek continuous improvement to our process. It’s a daily challenge for our staff, and one that they have taken great initiative to institute.
PSA is working on physical office expansion to new domestic and international markets. This will help diffuse submissions across multiple locations and allow PSA to tap into new grading talent across the hobby.
PSA opened offices in Tokyo in 2018 to better serve the growing Asian market in Japan and Southeast Asia.
Additionally, PSA has official agents in China and Canada, making it easier for collectors in these markets to submit to our U.S. headquarters.
PSA’s primary goal is to adhere to FIFO operations for each of our service lines. The recent launch of Complete Through Dates is an illustration of our commitment to FIFO standards.
We continuously strive to process submissions in the order they arrive for each of our service levels, although it's important to note that FIFO is not always possible. Certain aspects of our process, unique to trading card authentication and grading, may result in certain orders taking more time than typical. Orders that need extra time can result in Complete Through Dates appearing stalled. But the service line continues to advance. Once the delayed order is completed, the CTD may skip ahead multiple days.
Here are some of the scenarios that may cause an order to be delayed.
Following PSA’s submission guidelines is an important part of ensuring your order gets off on the right path once it arrives a PSA. We encourage customers to adhere to these guidelines in order to avoid the dreaded “Hold” designation that can occur at the Receiving stage. Delays can be caused by:
PSA’s Research department is one of the largest departments in the company, and has the core responsibility of accurately and efficiently identifying the wide variety of collectibles submitted to PSA. As you might imagine, this includes a rich and diverse assortment of collectibles, from 19th century cabinet cards to the latest releases from Topps, Upper Deck and Panini. Some orders may take longer in the Research department due to:
Here’s a behind-the-scenes look and how PSA grades your cards.
You’ve completed the online submission process and you’re ready to send your cards to PSA.
Soon after you’ve shipped your cards, they will be delivered to our facility in Southern California. Your package will be among the tens of thousands of collectibles we receive every day.
The Submission ID Label on the side of your package is scanned, and your Account and Orders pages are updated to reflect the arrival of your items.
Your order is reviewed, entered into the grading system and assigned an order number to replace your personal information – thus removing the potential for bias throughout the grading process.
Order ID stickers with unique certification numbers are placed on each Card Saver in the order.
Your cards are researched so they can be properly identified on the PSA label.
Your cards are authenticated and graded by PSA’s team of graders.
PSA’s LightHouse labels are printed showing each card’s information and grade.
The card and LightHouse label are sonically sealed in PSA’s tamper-evident holder for security.
Another PSA grader will review and check your order again for accuracy.
A final quality control check is done on your order to check for errors.
Your order is reviewed one final time to make sure everything is accounted for and then is shipped.