The U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has issued an enforcement advisory, warning manufacturers of wireless handsets to accurately report their compliance with the Commission’s hearing aid compatibility rules and regulations.
The FCC requires that most wireless service providers offer a minimum number of hearing aid-compatible (HAC) handsets, so that hearing-impaired consumers are able to take advantage of wireless communications technology. The Commission monitors compliance with these rules by requiring service providers to file annual HAC status reports, and to post this information on their publically-accessible websites. Wireless handset manufacturers were required to file HAC status reports by July 15, 2013.
Failure to comply with the FCC’s reporting and web site posting requirements can result in monetary forfeitures starting at $6,000 per violation. However, forfeiture amounts can be adjusted upward base on aggravating or mitigating factors, and the Commission can issue forfeitures of up to $16,000 for each violation, or for each day of a continuing violation, up to a maximum forfeiture of $112,500 for a single act or failure to act.