Step 6: Invoicing
After USAC has processed your FCC Form 486 (Receipt of Service Confirmation and Children’s Internet Protection Act Certification Form), you or your service provider can begin the process of invoicing USAC for the discount share of the approved eligible services. There are two methods that can be used to invoice USAC.
Once USAC processes an invoice for a Funding Request Number (FRN), the method of invoicing is set for that FRN and cannot be changed.
Invoice Method #1
Applicants file the FCC Form 472 (Billed Entity Applicant Reimbursement (BEAR) Form) if they have paid the service provider in full for the products or services and want to be reimbursed for the discount amount.
USAC will review the invoice and will pay the applicant if payment is approved. Billed entities will receive payment directly to their bank account. In order to receive direct BEAR payments, the applicant must have first obtained an applicant 498 ID by certifying an FCC Form 498 (Service Provider and Billed Entity Identification Number and General Contact Information Form). USAC will request and review additional documentation before it approves the form and issues the applicant 498 ID.
Invoice Method #2
Service providers file the FCC Form 474 (Service Provider Invoice (SPI) Form) if they have provided discounted bills to their customer and want to be reimbursed for the discount amount.
USAC will review the invoice and will pay the service provider if payment is approved. Note that applicants are required to pay the non-discount portion of the cost of the services. USAC may ask for verification that the applicant has paid its non-discount share before paying an invoice.
BEAR Form Filing Requirements
You can file a BEAR Form after all of the following have occurred:
- You have received a Funding Commitment Decision Letter (FCDL) with a positive funding commitment;
- You have filed and USAC has successfully processed an FCC Form 486;
- Your service provider has certified an FCC Form 473 (Service Provider Annual Certification (SPAC) Form);
- You have paid for the eligible products or services in full;
- The products or services have been delivered (an exception can be made for progress payments specified in a contract); and
- You have filed an FCC Form 498 and obtained an applicant 498 ID.
Invoice Filing Deadline
You must file BEAR Forms no later than 120 days after the last day to receive service or 120 days after the FCC Form 486 Notification Letter date, whichever is later.
Applicants and service providers may request and automatically receive a one-time 120-day extension of the deadline to file an invoice. Invoice deadline extension requests must be submitted on or before the invoice deadline date in order for the request to be considered timely. Note that invoice deadline extensions are FRN-specific, and either the applicant or the service provider can request an extension for a particular FRN.
After processing your BEAR Form, USAC issues a BEAR Notification Letter via U.S. First-Class Mail with information about the processing of your form. USAC also issues a copy of this letter to your service provider(s). If you need additional information about a reduction or denial of payment, you should refer to the invoice error code(s) included in your letter.
After the end of each calendar quarter, USAC issues a Quarterly Disbursement Report via U.S. First-Class Mail that details all invoicing activity, BEAR Forms and SPI Forms, processed during that quarter for all funding years. This report allows you to track all of the invoicing activity related to your Billed Entity Number (BEN).
If you would like to be notified each time your service provider submits a SPI Form, you can initiate an invoice check.
For many applicants, invoicing is the last step in the process. However, if you have changes, corrections, or other activities outside of the regular application process, you should review the information in Before You’re Done.