FCC Regulatory Fees Due Earlier This Year

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The FCC last week adopted a schedule of FY19 regulatory fees and is prepared to begin accepting payments now. The money is due earlier this year, by 11:59 p.m., Eastern Daylight Time, on September 24. 

The annual fees apply to wireline and wireless carriers, broadcasters, and other licensees. 

The agency is congressionally mandated to collect the fees; this year, they will total $339 million. Regulatory fees go towards the agency’s direct costs (salary and agency expenses), indirect costs (overhead functions), and support costs (rent, utilities, and equipment). 

Regulatory fees apply to common carrier authorizations that were granted on or before October 1 of last year. If a permit or license was transferred or assigned after that date, “responsibility for payment rests with the holder of the permit or license as of the fee due date,” according to the FCC.  

Wireless services comprise CMRS cellular, mobile, and messaging services. These fees are based on number of subscribers or telephone number count as of December 31, 2018.

A 25 percent late fee may be applied for late payments. Fees must be paid electronically – through credit card, electronic transfer or wire transfer – using the fee filer.

September 3, 2019

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