Reminder: Federal Communications Commission – May Filings
Each month, Kelley Drye’s Communications Group offers this reminder of principal upcoming filing deadlines that may affect our clients and contacts. Please review the deadlines below and contact us if you have any questions or if you have questions about any other compliance matters:
I. Featured May Deadlines
Following are reminders for upcoming Federal Communications Commission (FCC) reports and compliance requirements due in May
Form 499-Q Quarterly Telecommunications Reporting Worksheet (due May 2, 2022)
Carriers and providers of interstate and international telecommunications, including, but not limited to, interconnected Voice over Internet Protocol providers, providers offering interstate telecommunications for a fee on a non-common carrier basis, and payphone providers that are aggregators, are required to file the FCC Form 499-Q on a quarterly basis. Carriers and providers must report their actual and projected end user and carrier’s carrier interstate and international revenues for each calendar quarter by filing the Form 499-Q.
The Form 499-Q filing reporting historical revenue for January 1 through March 31 of 2022 and projected revenues for July 1 through September 30 of 2022 is due to the Universal Service Administrative Company on or before May 2, 2022.
Carriers and providers do not have to submit the Form 499-Q if they are not required to contribute directly to the universal service support mechanisms.
Note: Revisions to this Form 499-Q filing must be filed within 45 days of May 2, 2022.
As a reminder, Form 499-Q filers are required to submit the form electronically through USAC’s E-File system, available at https://www.usac.org/service-providers/.
Section 64.1900 Geographic Rate Averaging Certification (due May 2, 2022)
Each non-dominant provider of de-tariffed interstate, domestic, interexchange services must certify that it provides such service in compliance with its geographic rate average and rate integration obligations pursuant to section 254(g) of the Communications Act. The Certification must be signed by an officer of the company and is due to the FCC by May 2, 2022.
II. Other May Deadlines:
- On February 4, the WCB and Office of Economics and Analytics Office of Economics and Analytics (OEA) announced via Public Notice (DA 22-109) the establishment of the online reporting portal for providers of advanced communications services to report the extent to which their networks contain or use covered communications equipment or services. This report must be submitted no later than May 5, 2022.
- On March 22, the WCB extended via Public Notice (DA 22-301) the deadline for individuals, non-governmental entities such as small businesses, and governmental entities, to initiate the registration process for participating in the Eligible Locations Adjustment Process (ELAP) as a stakeholder. Specifically, the WCB extends the original deadline, Friday, March 25, 2022, 11:59 PM ET, to Friday, May 13, 2022, 11:59 PM ET.
- On March 23, the FCC announced the opening of a third application filing window to award at least $1 billion in Emergency Connectivity Fund support. The third application filing window will open on April 28, 2022, and close on May 13, 2022.
- On March 16, the WCB released an Order (DA 22-284) granting a Motion of Extension of Time in the Promoting Fair and Open Competitive Bidding in the E-Rate Program proceeding. The Order extends the comment and reply comment dates to April 27, 2022, and May 27, 2022, respectively.
- On February 22, the FCC released a Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (FCC 22-15) seeking comment on several revisions to the Commission’s Rural Health Care (RHC) Program rules designed to ensure that rural healthcare providers receive funding necessary to access the broadband and telecommunications services necessary to provide vital healthcare services while limiting costly inefficiencies and the potential for waste, fraud, and abuse. Comments are due on or before April 14, 2022, and reply comments are due on or before May 16, 2022.
Note that the foregoing is not intended to be a comprehensive listing of filing deadlines at the Commission this coming month – feel free to contact us with any inquiries about the timing or applicability to your company of any filings.
III. Select Ongoing Filing Requirements:
Pro Forma Assignments and Transfers
Certain Assignments of FCC Authorizations and Transfers of Control of FCC Authorization holders require pro forma applications or notices. Others require FCC approvals or notices in advance of the transaction.
A pro forma assignment or transfer is one in which the form of ownership changes but actual control of the license ultimately remains with the same entity or person. Pro forma assignments and transfers may be approved under streamlined forbearance procedures in the case of most telecommunications carriers (excluding licensees with installment payment or designated entity issues). Pro forma changes involving international Section 214 authorizations, for example, do not require prior FCC approval provided that the parties notify the FCC of the change within 30 days.
Please feel free to contact us if there are questions whether an assignment or transfer of control your company or its authorization, whether wireline or wireless, is contemplating is pro forma or not, and whether an after-the-fact notice to the FCC satisfies the regulatory filing obligations of the parties to the transaction, or whether, by contrast, an advance fling needs to be made, such as a substantive application seeking FCC approval of the assignment or transfer prior to the closing of the transaction.
Change in FCC Form 499 Filer Information
Filers must update their registration information, including a DC Agent for Service of Process in accordance with these instructions to the FCC Form 499-A. Filers must file updated information within one week of the contact information change.
Filers wishing to update Preparer information, headquarters address, billing contact information, or DC Agent for Service of Process, can submit either an FCC Form 499-A or an FCC Form 499-Q or, for billing-related matters only, email USAC’s billing department. Filers wishing to update any other information must submit a revised FCC Form 499-A.
Filers that cease providing telecommunications must deactivate their Filer ID with USAC by submitting a letter with termination date and information on their successor entity to USAC. Filers must also update their CORES ID information with the Commission.
Filers must file within 30 days of the date that the company ceases to provide telecommunications service or telecommunications.
Change in Robocall Mitigation Plans
A voice service provider that has not fully implemented the STIR/SHAKEN call authentication framework for all calls must submit a robocall mitigation plan pursuant to 47 CFR § 64.6305(b). Any provider that makes a change in any of the following information must submit a revised robocall mitigation plan within 10 business days of the change. See 47 CFR § 64.6305(b)(5).
- Its certification as to the implementation of STIR/SHAKEN in its network;
- The extension(s) that apply to its implementation of the STIR/SHAKEN framework;
- The specific reasonable steps the voice service provider has taken to avoid originating illegal robocall traffic as part of its robocall mitigation program;
- Its commitment to respond to all traceback requests and law enforcement requests for information on illegal robocalling; and
- The provider’s business name, d/b/a name(s), former name(s), its legal address and contact information for one person within the company responsible for addressing robocall mitigation-related issues.
The link for submitting a revised robocall mitigation plan is available here:
Attorneys in Kelley Drye’s Communications Practice Group are experienced in addressing regulatory compliance matters at the federal and state levels, including universal service filing and carrier contribution issues, and we are available to assist clients with determining how to report their revenues for universal service purposes. For more information, please contact your current Kelley Drye attorney or any member of the Communications Practice Group.