Step 5: Invoicing
USAC can process invoices from either the applicant or the service provider after the following have occurred:
- USAC has issued a Funding Commitment Decision Letter (FCDL) with a positive funding commitment;
- Services have started (USAC can process invoices for progress payments after review of the contract if it includes a specific payment schedule);
- The applicant has submitted, and USAC has successfully processed, an FCC Form 486; and
- The service provider has filed an FCC Form 473 (Service Provider Annual Certification (SPAC) Form) for the relevant funding year.
There are two methods that can be used to invoice USAC. Once USAC has processed an invoice for a Funding Request Number (FRN), that method of invoicing must be used for that FRN for the remainder of the invoicing process.
Invoicing Method #1
Applicants file the FCC Form 472 (Billed Entity Applicant Reimbursement (BEAR) Form) if they have paid you in full for the services and want to be reimbursed for the discount amount.
Applicants file BEAR forms online in the Schools and Libraries (E-Rate) program legacy system. Billed entities will receive payment directly to their bank account. In order to begin direct BEAR payments, the applicant must have completed an FCC Form 498 to obtain an applicant 498 ID.
Invoicing Method #2
You file the FCC Form 474 (Service Provider Invoice (SPI) Form) if you have billed the applicant for the non-discount amount (the applicant’s share of the cost) and want to be reimbursed for the discount amount.
USAC will review the SPI Form and disburse the payment to you if payment is approved.
The applicant is always required to pay the non-discount portion of the costs for the services.
Filing SPI Forms
You have two options for completing and submitting the SPI Form:
- You can file online, or
- You can file electronically. USAC will set you up for electronic invoicing upon request and then you can submit your invoice information to USAC in a comma-delimited file.
Invoice Filing Deadlines
Invoices must be submitted 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 single one-time 120-day extension of the deadline to submit an invoice for the FCC Form 472 (BEAR Form) or FCC Form 474 (SPI Form). Invoice deadline extension requests must be submitted on or before the invoice deadline in order for the request to be considered timely filed.
USAC issues a copy of the applicant’s BEAR Notification Letter to you via U.S. First-Class Mail after a BEAR Form is processed. If there is a reduction or denial of the amount on the BEAR Form, you can refer to the invoice decision code(s) featured on the letter for more information.
USAC issues you an Invoice Status Report after processing the SPI Form. You can subscribe to receive the information in this report electronically. As above, if there is a reduction or denial of the amount on the SPI Form, you can refer to the invoice error code(s) featured on the letter for more information.
For many service providers, 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 the Before You’re Done section.