CONSUMER AND GOVERNMENTAL AFFAIRS BUREAU PROVIDES GUIDANCE ON FILING REQUESTS FOR WAIVER OF NEW REQUIREMENTS ADOPTED IN THE VIDEO RELAY SERVICES FRAUD ORDER
Federal Communications Commission ion
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Released: May 17, 2011
CONSUMER AND GOVERNMENTAL AFFAIRS BUREAU PROVIDES GUIDANCE
ON FILING REQUESTS FOR WAIVER OF NEW REQUIREMENTS ADOPTED
IN THE VIDEO RELAY SERVICES FRAUD ORDER
CG Docket No. 10-51On April 6, 2011, the Commission released a Report and Order adopting new rules designed to
eliminate fraud and abuse in the provision of video relay service (VRS).1 Among the measures taken in
the VRS Fraud Order and FNPRM is the adoption of a rule prohibiting revenue sharing arrangements for
communications assistant (CA) and call center functions between entities eligible for compensation from
the Fund and non-eligible entities (subcontractors).2 This new rule will become effective on June 1,
In the VRS Fraud Order and FNPRM, the Commission stated that it would consider requests for a
temporary waiver of the new requirements to give entities that are now offering services through an
arrangement with an eligible VRS provider4 "an opportunity to continue to provide VRS as a
subcontractor with an eligible provider until such time as they obtain certification under new procedures
to be adopted pursuant to the accompanying FNPRM."5 Both eligible VRS providers seeking to continue
to use subcontractors to provide VRS,6 and subcontractors seeking to continue to provide VRS through an
1 See Structure and Practices of the Video Relay Service Program, CG Docket No. 10-51, Report and Order and
Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, 26 FCC Rcd 5545 (2011) (VRS Fraud Order and FNPRM).
2 Id. at 5574, 58; 47 C.F.R. 64.604(c)(5)(iii)(N)(1)(iii).
3 Most of the rules adopted in the VRS Fraud Order and FNPRM become effective 30 days after the summary of
these rules was published in the Federal Register, which occurred on May 2, 2011. The rule prohibiting VRS CAs
from relaying calls from their homes, 47 C.F.R. 64.604(b)(4)(iii), will become effective on August 30, 2011 (120
days after the date of the Federal Register publication).
4 An eligible provider is an entity that meets the Commission's eligibility requirements to provide Internet-based
telecommunications relay service (TRS) and receive compensation from the Interstate TRS Fund. See 47 C.F.R.
64.604(c)(5)(iii)(F)(1-4) (provider eligibility rules); see generally Telecommunications Relay Services and Speech-
to-Speech Services for Individuals with Hearing and Speech Disabilities, CG Docket No. 03-123, Report and Order
and Order on Reconsideration, 20 FCC Rcd 20577 (2005).
5 VRS Fraud Order and FNPRM. 26 FCC Rcd at 5575, 62 (emphasis added).
6 An eligible provider must identify in its waiver request the subcontractor(s) that it seeks to continue to use to
provide service, and may also seek waiver on the subcontractor's behalf. In such case, the subcontractor need not
seek a separate waiver.
arrangement with an eligible VRS provider, may seek a waiver of the new requirements pertaining to
revenue sharing arrangements.7 If a waiver is granted, the eligible provider will be permitted to continue
providing service using a subcontractor(s) consistent with the terms of the waiver granted.
Entities seeking to avoid a disruption in their eligibility to provide VRS due to noncompliance
with the Commission's new requirements must file their requests for a waiver on or before May 24, 2011
so as to provide Commission staff sufficient time to review and take action on the waiver request by June
1, 2011. Requests for waiver filed after May 24, 2011 will be addressed as expeditiously as possible, but
may not be resolved before the effective date of the new rules.
To request materials in accessible formats for people with disabilities (Braille, large print, electronic
files, audio format), send an e-mail to email@example.com or call the Consumer and Governmental Affairs
Bureau at (202) 418-0530 (voice), (202) 418-0432 (TTY). This document can also be downloaded in Word
and Portable Document Format (PDF) at: http://www.fcc.gov/cgb/dro/trs.html.
For further information, please contact Gregory Hlibok, Consumer and Governmental Affairs Bureau,
Disability Rights Office, at (202) 559-5158 (video/voice), (202) 418-0431 (TTY), or e-mail at
Action by the Chief, Consumer and Governmental Affairs Bureau
- FCC -
7 A subcontractor that is granted a waiver will be eligible to continue providing service through its eligible provider.
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