FCC Adopts Order to Transition Toll Free, 8YY Calls to Bill-and-Keep

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In an effort to curb such abuses as arbitrage, traffic pumping and double dipping, the Federal Communications Commission has adopted final rules for the compensation of 8YY traffic. FCC Order WC Docket No. 18-156, 8YY Access Charge Reform, is a somewhat complicated order that prescribes new billing rules from July 1, 2021 through July 1, 2023, as follows.

Originating 8YY Access Charges: As of the effective date of the order, it caps any intrastate access rates not previously capped. Effective July 1, 2021, any price cap carrier intrastate access rates that exceed the comparable interstate rates must be reduced to the interstate rate. Effective July 1, 2022, all originating rates must be reduced to half of their capped levels. At July 1, 2023, all originating rates are reduced to bill-and-keep.

Joint Tandem Switched Transport Access Service Rate Cap for Originating 8YY Traffic: As of the effective date of the order, it caps all existing tandem and transport rates. Effective July 1, 2021, eliminates those existing tandem and transport charges and combines them into a joint switched rate element not to exceed $0.001 per minute.

8YY Database Query (DBQ) Charges: As of the effective date of the order, it caps all charges not previously capped at their current levels. The Order adopts a multistage, multiyear transition to a nationwide cap at July 1, 2023 of $0.0002 per 8YY database query and limits them to a single charge per call to be assessed by the carrier that initiates the call. This transition is as follows: Effective July 1, 2021, the 8YY database query charge reduces to no more than $0.004248 per query. Effective July 1, 2022, the 8YY database query charge reduces to ½ of the difference between the July 1, 2021 DBQ rate and the $0.0002 July 1, 2023 DBQ rate.

We can answer any questions you may have on these changes in 8YY billing, and our NEW ICORE Integrated Billing System™ (IIBS) is fully capable of implementing these new rules. Please call us (610-928-3944) if you need any help with this rather extensive FCC Order.