Fee for NOT Choosing a Long Distance Provider

Why do consumers have to pay a fee for not choosing a long distance carrier?

Under the Federal Communications Commission's first report and order adopted on May 7, 1997, the local service providers have the right to collect monies directly from customers who do not select a long-distance carrier. The local service provider will charge the fee hoping that consumers will choose a carrier and stay with that carrier for an extended period of time.

Do I Need To Select A Long Distance Carrier?

No. You can request “NONE” or “NO” long distance company from your local telephone company. You may choose this option because you never make long distance calls, you use a pre-paid phone card for your long distance calls or you make long distance calls on your wireless (cell) phone. You may add a long distance company at a later time. However, you will have to pay a charge. The charge is an FCC mandated fixed charge (usually $5). Your local telephone company will add this charge to your bill to make the change each and every time you request a change. The PUC does not regulate this charge.