FCC Initiates Rulemaking on VoIP Carriers' 911 and E911 Rights and Obligations

FCC Initiates Rulemaking on VoIP Carriers' 911 and E911 Rights and Obligations

News
On August 25, 2008, the FCC began a rulemaking proceeding to address VoIP carriers' rights and obligations to provide 911 and E911 services under the New and Emerging Technologies 911 Improvement Act (NET 911 Act), which President Bush signed into law on July 23, 2008. The NET 911 Act contains two key elements. First, it confirms VoIP carriers' obligation to provide 911 and E911 services to customers in accordance with FCC regulations. The existing regulations, adopted in the FCC's VoIP 911 Order (2005), impose certain 911 location information requirements on VoIP providers, and were the subject of an unsuccessful challenge in the DC Circuit. Second, it gives VoIP carriers the right to access the network "capabilities" necessary to provide these services, and to access them on the same rates, terms, and conditions as those capabilities are made available to wireless carriers. Since the first part of the Act has already been implemented, the rulemaking is designed to implement the second element. To learn more, see our recent Email Alert.