USAC's Latest News Archive gives you access to all announcements related to the universal service programs as they were made throughout the years.
USAC has been directed to provide ETCs with a schedule for loading additional states in the near future, as well as guidance regarding data submission requirements. The FCC and USAC will conduct workshops on October 31 and November 20 to further discuss NLAD implementation. Visit the Trainings & Outreach page for more information.
The FCC also reminded ETCs of their obligation to eliminate duplicative support within their company. ETCs are instructed to use all information available to them, including the information collected as part of their obligation to transmit information to NLAD, to identify and eliminate household duplicates.
1. Carriers with a Study Area Code (SAC) assignment from USAC must submit an FCC Form 481. Carriers with a SAC that have not yet sought reimbursement from the Lifeline Program via FCC Form 497 will not be able to use the online FCC Form 481. These carriers will be required to complete their filing via email.
2. Carriers must complete the following sections of FCC Form 481 based on the governing body which designated the carrier as an eligible telecommunications carrier (ETC):
FCC designated carriers (47 CFR Section 54.422b) must complete:
State designated carriers (47 CFR Section 54.422a) must complete:
3. In Block 1200, the “Terms and Conditions of Lifeline Program Consumers” section, enter the terms and conditions of all Lifeline Program service options for voice telephony service plans - those generally made available to the public, and plans offered to subscribers. Include rates for each voice telephony service plan, the number of minutes provided (as part of all Lifeline Program plans offered), and additional charges for toll calls.
Presentation slides from a FCC Form 481 webinar training session are available in the Online Learning Library, along with answers to questions asked throughout the webinar.
All carriers receiving High Cost and/or Lifeline Program support are required to file the FCC Form 481, the Carrier Annual Reporting Data Collection Form, by October 15, 2013. The online FCC Form 481 is now available through E-File, USAC's online filing system.
USAC recommends taking steps now to establish the E-File users who will be responsible for filling out, certifying, and submitting FCC Form 481. Only the Company Officer or the General Contact (as listed on the company's FCC Form 498) can log in to E-File and set up authorized users.
If You Are the Company Officer or General Contact
Company Officers and General Contacts do not need to establish authorized users if they plan to fill out, submit, and certify the FCC Form 481 themselves. Company Officers and General Contacts already have authorization to certify the form; an authorized user is not required.
If the Company Officer or General Contact wishes to authorize another person to manage the form, they should log in to E-File, click "New User," and designate the user as one of the three types of authorized users:
The new authorized user will receive an automatically-generated email from USAC with E-File login instructions including their user ID and a temporary password.
If You Are Not the Company Officer or General Contact
If you want access to FCC Form 481, contact the Company Officer or General Contact (as listed on your company's FCC Form 498) and request to be added as an authorized 481 user, officer, or agent.
Not sure who those individuals are? Need help with the E-File system? Email USAC Customer Support or call them at (888) 641-8722. Select Option #3 (FCC Form 498 support), then Option #1 (logging in to E-File).
For questions about FCC Form 481, contact HCLI Questions.
Beginning August 20, 2013, all service providers must use the new FCC Form 498 (August 2013 version) when applying for a new Service Provider Identification Number (SPIN) or when making changes to contact or remittance information to an existing SPIN.
The new FCC Form 498 and instructions are posted on the USAC website in the Service Provider Forms section. No prior years’ forms will be accepted; all FCC Form 498s mailed to USAC (postmarked after August 20th) must use the newest version of the form or they will not be processed. Service providers who submit an outdated form will receive notice from USAC that the form could not be processed. FCC Form 498 E-File users will automatically see the newest version of the form upon log in, and their information will pre-populate.
The changes to the form affect service providers participating in the Rural Health Care (RHC) Program. Service providers currently participating in the RHC Program will soon have their universal service fund (USF) contributions automatically set to net against their distribution payments. To opt out of netted payments, service providers must uncheck the box in Block 14. Additionally, service providers that plan on participating in the RHC’s Healthcare Connect Fund must indicate their intention by checking the box in Block 15, “Certification to Assist Health Care Providers.”
On August 19, 2013, the FCC released Public Notice DA-13-1777 explaining the new changes to the form. If you have questions, call us at (888) 641-8722, or email USAC's 499 group. You may also visit the Service Providers section of our website. To learn more, please view the Changes to FCC Form 498 video.
Additional details about the training will be forthcoming. If you have additional questions concerning this event, email or call us at (800) 453-1546.