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AT&T Corporation

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Released: January 29, 2004

Federal Communications Commission

DA 04-167


Before the

Federal Communications Commission

Washington, D.C. 20554



In the Matter of
)


)

AT&T Corporation
)
IC Nos. 03-S84013

)
03-S84875
Complaint Regarding
)
03-S84898
Unauthorized Change of
)
03-S84963
Subscriber’s Telecommunications Carrier
)
03-S84991
)
03-B0050604S
)
03-I0028940
)
03-I0029134
)
03-I0051343S
)
03-S000262S
)







ORDER


Adopted: January 27, 2004

Released: January 29, 2004



By the Acting Deputy Chief, Policy Division, Consumer & Governmental Affairs Bureau:

1.
In this Order, we consider the complaint1 alleging that AT&T Corporation
(AT&T) changed Complainants’ telecommunications service provider(s) without obtaining
authorization and verification from each Complainant in violation of the Commission’s rules.2
We conclude that AT&T’s actions did not result in an unauthorized change in Complainants’
telecommunications service provider and we deny Complainants’ complaint.

2.
In December 1998, the Commission released the Section 258 Order in which it
adopted rules to implement Section 258 of the Communications Act of 1934 (Act), as amended
by the Telecommunications Act of 1996 (1996 Act).3 Section 258 prohibits the practice of


1
See Appendix A.

2
See 47 C.F.R. §§ 64.1100 – 64.1190.
3
47 U.S.C. § 258(a); Telecommunications Act of 1996, Pub. L. No. 104-104, 110 Stat. 56
(1996); Implementation of the Subscriber Carrier Selection Changes Provisions of the Telecommunications Act of
1996; Policies and Rules Concerning Unauthorized Changes of Consumers’ Long Distance Carriers
, CC Docket
No. 94-129, Second Report and Order and Further Notice of Proposed Rule Making, 14 FCC Rcd 1508 (1998)
(Section 258 Order), stayed in part, MCI WorldCom v. FCC, No. 99-1125 (D.C. Cir. May 18, 1999); First Order
on Reconsideration, 15 FCC Rcd 8158 (2000); stay lifted, MCI WorldCom v. FCC, No. 99-1125 (D.C. Cir. June
27, 2000); Third Report and Order and Second Order on Reconsideration, 15 FCC Rcd 15996 (2000), Errata, DA
No. 00-2163 (rel. Sept. 25, 2000), Erratum, DA No. 00-2192 (rel. Oct. 4, 2000), Order, FCC 01-67 (rel. Feb. 22,
(continued….)



Federal Communications Commission


DA 04-167



“slamming,” the submission or execution of an unauthorized change in a subscriber’s selection
of a provider of telephone exchange service or telephone toll service.4 In the Section 258 Order,
the Commission adopted aggressive new rules designed to take the profit out of slamming,
broadened the scope of the slamming rules to encompass all carriers, and modified its existing
requirements for the authorization and verification of preferred carrier changes. The rules
require, among other things, that a carrier receive individual subscriber consent before a carrier
change may occur.5 Pursuant to Section 258, carriers are absolutely barred from changing a
customer's preferred local or long distance carrier without first complying with one of the
Commission's verification procedures.6 Specifically, a carrier must: (1) obtain the subscriber's
written or electronically signed authorization in a format that meets the requirements of
Section 64.1130 authorization; (2) obtain confirmation from the subscriber via a toll-free number
provided exclusively for the purpose of confirming orders electronically; or (3) utilize an
independent third party to verify the subscriber's order.7

3.
The Commission also has adopted liability rules. These rules require the carrier
to absolve the subscriber where the subscriber has not paid his or her bill. In that context, if the
subscriber has not already paid charges to the unauthorized carrier, the subscriber is absolved of
liability for charges imposed by the unauthorized carrier for service provided during the first 30
days after the unauthorized change.8 Where the subscriber has paid charges to the unauthorized
carrier, the Commission’s rules require that the unauthorized carrier pay 150% of those charges
to the authorized carrier, and the authorized carrier shall refund or credit to the subscriber 50%
of all charges paid by the subscriber to the unauthorized carrier.9 Carriers should note that our
actions in this order do not preclude the Commission from taking additional action, if warranted,
pursuant to Section 503 of the Act.10
(Continued from previous page)
2001); reconsideration pending. Prior to the adoption of Section 258, the Commission had taken various steps to
address the slamming problem. See, e.g., Policies and Rules Concerning Unauthorized Changes of Consumers'
Long Distance Carriers
, CC Docket No. 94-129, Report and Order, 10 FCC Rcd 9560 (1995), stayed in part, 11
FCC Rcd 856 (1995); Policies and Rules Concerning Changing Long Distance Carriers, CC Docket No. 91-64, 7
FCC Rcd 1038 (1992), reconsideration denied, 8 FCC Rcd 3215 (1993); Investigation of Access and Divestiture
Related Tariffs, CC Docket No. 83-1145, Phase I, 101 F.C.C.2d 911, 101 F.C.C.2d 935, reconsideration denied,
102 F.C.C.2d 503 (1985).
4
47 U.S.C. § 258(a).
5
See 47 C.F.R. § 64.1120.
6
47 U.S.C. § 258(a).
7
See 47 C.F.R. § 64.1120(c). Section 64.1130 details the requirements for letter of agency form
and content for written or electronically signed authorizations. 47 C.F.R. § 64.1130.

8
See 47 C.F.R. §§ 64.1140, 64.1160. Any charges imposed by the unauthorized carrier on the
subscriber for service provided after this 30-day period shall be paid by the subscriber to the authorized carrier at
the rates the subscriber was paying to the authorized carrier at the time of the unauthorized change. Id.

9
See 47 C.F.R. §§ 64.1140, 64.1170.

10
See 47 U.S.C. § 503.

2



Federal Communications Commission


DA 04-167




4.
We received Complainants’ complaints alleging that Complainants’ service
providers had been changed without Complainants’ authorization. Pursuant to Sections 1.719
and 64.1150 of our rules,11 we notified AT&T of the complaints and AT&T responded.12 We
find that AT&T has produced clear and convincing evidence of a valid authorized carrier change
by Complainants.13 Therefore, we find that AT&T’s actions did not result in an unauthorized
change in Complainants’ telecommunications service.14

5.
Accordingly, IT IS ORDERED that, pursuant to Section 258 of the
Communications Act of 1934, as amended, 47 U.S.C. § 258, and Sections 0.141, 0.361 and
1.719 of the Commission’s rules, 47 C.F.R. §§ 0.141, 0.361, 1.719, the Complaint filed by
Complainants ARE DENIED.




FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION



Nancy
A.
Stevenson,
Acting
Deputy
Chief
Policy
Division
Consumer & Governmental Affairs Bureau


11
47 C.F.R. § 1.719 (Commission procedure for informal complaints filed pursuant to Section 258
of the Act); 47 C.F.R. § 64.1150 (procedures for resolution of unauthorized changes in preferred carrier).
12
See Appendix A.

13
See 47 C.F.R. § 64.1150(d).
14
If Complainant is unsatisfied with the resolution of this complaint, Complainant may file a
formal complaint with the Commission pursuant to Section 1.721 of the Commission’s rules, 47 C.F.R. § 1.721.
Such filing will be deemed to relate back to the filing date of Complainant’s informal complaint so long as the
formal complaint is filed within 45 days from the date this order is mailed or delivered electronically to
Complainant. See 47 C.F.R. § 1.719.

3



Federal Communications Commission


DA 04-167




APPENDIX A


INFORMAL
DATE OF
DATE OF
COMPLAINT
COMPLAINT
CARRIER
RESPONSE




03-S84013
May 12, 2003
June 13, 2003



03-S84875
August 21, 2003
October 9, 2003



03-S84898
September 5, 2003
October 14, 2003



03-S84963
September 16. 2003
October 14, 2003



03-S84991
September 12, 2003
October 31, 2003



03-B0050604S
July 17, 2003
September 11, 2003



03-I0028940
February 13, 2003
May 1, 2003



03-I0029134
February 12, 2003
April 28, 2003



03-I0051343S
July 24, 2003
September 16, 2003



03-S000262S
August 28, 2003
October 8, 2003

























































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Federal Communications Commission


DA 04-167

















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