Step 5: Starting Services

After you have received your Funding Commitment Decision Letter (FCDL) and the delivery of your services has started, you must file an FCC Form 486 to inform USAC that:

  • Services for which you have been approved for discounts have started and invoicing can begin;
  • You are in compliance with the Children’s Internet Protection Act (CIPA) (or CIPA does not apply because your application is only for telecommunications services); and
  • (For Funding Year 2014 and earlier) – Your technology plan has been approved by a USAC-certified Technology Plan Approver if you are required to have one.

Before Starting Services

Before starting services, you and your service provider(s) should discuss the details of the services or products you will be receiving. If you have a contract you should review it. In addition, you should determine whether you or your service provider will invoice USAC for the cost of the discounted services.

Under certain circumstances, advance installation of certain services can occur before July 1 of the funding year.

Filing an FCC Form 486 Early

You can file an FCC Form 486 early (before services have started) if:

  • You have received your FCDL;
  • Your services will start in the month of July;
  • You can truthfully make all of the certifications on the form; and
  • You are filing the form on or before July 31.

You must be in compliance with the requirements of CIPA before services start. USAC cannot pay discounts on services received during a period of time when you are not in compliance. USAC may review your compliance with these requirements either before or after your FCC Form 486 is processed.

Filing Deadline

The FCC Form 486 must be certified no later than 120 days after the service start date or 120 days after the date of the FCDL, whichever date is later. Filing late can result in a reduction in funding; the later the form is filed after the deadline, the greater the reduction. You can use the Deadlines Tool to calculate your FCC Form 486 deadline.

After you certify an FCC Form 486 in the E-Rate Productivity Center (EPC), you will receive a notification in your EPC News feed. A notification will also be sent to the service provider(s) listed on the form.

FCC Form 486 Notification Letter

After your form has been reviewed, USAC will issue an FCC Form 486 Notification Letter to the applicant and service provider. This letter confirms that USAC has approved your form, includes the information you provided on the form, and provides next steps in the application process.

If USAC was required to adjust the service start date of a funding request, the service start date in the letter will be adjusted and an explanation for the adjustment will be included.

If your FCC Form 486 was filed for FY2015 or for a previous funding year, USAC will issue an FCC Form 486 Notification Letter by U.S. First Class Mail to you and your service provider(s).

Next Steps

After USAC has approved your FCC Form 486 and you have started to receive services, you or your service provider can begin to invoice USAC for the discounted costs of the approved products or services.