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Sample Wireline Phone Bill

Place your cursor on the question marks for an explanation of the charges
on your phone bill, OR click on the links for a printable explanation
of each charge, OR click here for fact sheet explaining all charges.

( View a sample Wireless phone bill. )

Phone Company Bill - Header
Statement:  xx/xx/xx - xx/xx/xx Date:  xx/xx/xxxx
Name:  John and Jane Doe Invoice Number:  234567890
Address:  123 Any Road Member Number:  23ABC
Any Town, Any State 00001 Billing Period:  xx/xx/xx - xx/xx/xx



 ACCOUNT SUMMARY
 Amount of Last Bill.............................................. $24.55
 Payment(s)   Thank You..................................... $24.55
 Balance.............................................................. $0.00
 
 CURRENT CHARGES
 Local Monthly Charges....................................... $36.95
 Long Distance Service Charges......................... $9.93
 Total Due by xx/xx/xxxx $46.88
Important Information  -  You are responsible for payment of all charges on your bill. Your "dial tone" may be disconnected if you do not pay your essential charges such as your telephone line, surcharges and fees. If you do not pay for other charges, such as voice mail, wireless, and Internet, those particular services may be disconnected.
Call 1-888-XXX-XXXX for Customer Service

This is a summary of your charges for this billing period:

Recurring Charges
Local Telephone Service: ............................................................................. $18.00  
Access Recovery Charge:  Access Recovery Charge explanation .................................................................... $0.50  
Charge for Network Access (Subscriber Line Charge):  Subscriber Line Charge explanation ......................... $6.50  
Voice Mail Voice Mail explanation ............................................................................................ $4.00  
Universal Connectivity Fee (Universal Service Fund (USF) ), Federal:  Universal Service Fund explanation .. $0.50  
Local Number Portability Local Number Portability explanation ....................................................................... $0.30  
Emergency 911 Emergency 911 explanation .................................................................................... $1.00  
TRS (Telecommunications Relay):  Telecommunications Relay explanation ........................................................ $0.90  
Federal Excise Tax, Federal:  Federal Excise Tax explanation ................................................................. $2.25  
Utility User Tax, City: ...................................................................................... $0.50  
State & Local Taxes State and Local Taxes explanation ............................................................................. $2.50  
Total Balance Due: ....................................................................................... $36.95  
 

 Your Long Distance Telephone Company

 Charges for the current month:

 Domestic Discount ........................................................................................... $0.46  credit
 Federal Tax ...................................................................................................... $0.32  
 State and Local Surcharge............................................................................... $0.02  
 Carrier Universal Service Charge Universal Service Fund explanation ............................................................ $0.85
 Single Bill Fee Single Bill Fee explanation .......................................................................................... $1.50
 Total Long Distance Monthly Charges............................................................... $2.23  

 Dial "1" Calls"

 *Domestic

 DATE  TIME  PLACE AND NUMBER CALLED  TYPE  RATE  MINUTES  AMOUNT
 XX/XX  7:05 pm  LA, CA             (xxx) xxx-xxxx  Direct  Night  12  $1.20
 XX/XX  11:12 am  NYC,NY           (xxx) xxx-xxxx  Direct  Day    2  $0.50
 XX/XX  5:48 pm  Ames, IA          (xxx) xxx-xxxx  Direct  Day  18  $4.50
 XX/XX  12:28  pm  Phil, PA            (xxx) xxx-xxxx  Direct  Night  11  $1.10
 XX/XX  2:14  pm  Mobile, AL        (xxx) xxx-xxxx  Direct  Night/Weekend    1  $0.10
 XX/XX  9:51  pm  Stl, MO             (xxx) xxx-xxxx  Direct  Night    3  $0.30
 Total Long Distance Company Dial "1" Calls..................................................... $7.70  
This portion of your bill is provided as a service to your long distance telephone company. Nonpayment of these services will not result in disconnection of your local telephone service. However, the service provider associated with these charges may initiate collection activity on its own behalf.

Disclaimer: The charges on this bill are examples only and neither the charges nor the amounts of the charges should be construed as having been accepted or approved by the Federal Communications Commission. Fact Sheet explaining charges on wireline phone bill.

( View a sample Wireless phone bill. )


Printable Explanation of Charges:

Access Recovery Charge: 

This charge was recently adopted as part of reforms to the intercarrier compensation regimes. This transitional recovery charge is intended to mitigate the effect of reduced intercarrier revenues and facilitate continued investment in broadband. The FCC caps the maximum price that a company may charge for this. It is not a tax. The FCC does NOT get this money.

Beginning July 1, 2012, the FCC will allow Incumbent Local Exchange Carriers (LECs) to assess a new Access Recovery Charge (ARC). The FCC will allow Incumbent LECs to bill the ARC separately, or to combine the ARC with the SLC for purposes of billing the two charges. The FCC will allow Incumbent LECs to assess a monthly charge of up to $0.50 per line on residential end users, single-line business customers, and non-primary residential lines. The $0.50 ARC may increase an additional $0.50 annually through 2016 or 2017, depending on the type of carrier (price cap or rate-of-return). The FCC also will allow Incumbent LECs to assess a monthly charge of up to $1.00 per line on multiline business lines. The $1.00 ARC on multiline business lines may increase an additional $1.00 annually through 2016 or 2017, depending on the type of carrier (price cap or rate-of-return). The multiline business SLC combined with the multiline business ARC may not exceed $12.20 per month. Non-Primary Lines are the second and any additional telephone lines connecting consumers' residential telephone service to the telephone network. Local telephone companies use a service location (address) definition, meaning that any additional line billed to the same address is considered a non-primary line, subject to a higher subscriber line charge cap, even if the bill is in a different name at the same address.

Charge for Network Access (Subscriber Line Charge): 

This charge covers the costs of the local phone network. This charge may appear as “FCC Charge for Network Access,” “Federal Line Cost Charge,” “Interstate Access Charge,” “Federal Access Charge,” “Interstate Single Line Charge,” “Customer Line Charge” or “FCC-Approved Customer Line Charge.” The FCC sets the maximum allowable Federal Subscriber Line Charge. This is not a government charge or tax, and it does not end up in the U.S. treasury.

Voice Mail: 

This item is provided as a service by your local telephone company. This service may be disconnected for nonpayment, but nonpayment of this service will not result in disconnection of your local telephone service.

Universal Connectivity Fee (Universal Service Fund), Federal: 

Because telephones provide a vital link to emergency services, to government services and to surrounding communities, it has been our nation’s policy to promote telephone service to all households since this service began in the 1930s. The USF helps to make phone service affordable and available to all Americans, including consumers with low incomes, those living in areas where the costs of providing telephone service is high, schools and libraries and rural health care providers. Congress has mandated that all telephone companies providing interstate service must contribute to the USF. Although not required to do so by the government, many carriers choose to pass their contribution costs on to their customers in the form of a line item, often called the “Federal Universal Service Fee” or “Universal Connectivity Fee”.

Local Number Portability: 

The FCC allows local telephone companies to recover certain costs for providing telephone number portability to its customers. Telephone number portability allows residential and business customers to retain, at the same location, their existing local telephone numbers when switching from one local telephone service provider to another. The LNP Charge is a fixed, monthly charge. Local telephone companies may continue to assess this charge on their customers’ telephone bills for five years from the date the local telephone company first began itemizing the charge on the bill. This charge is not a tax.

Emergency 911:

This charge is imposed by local governments to help pay for emergency services such as fire and rescue.

TRS (Telecommunications Relay):

This charge helps to pay for the relay center which transmits and translates calls for hearing-impaired and speech-impaired people.

Federal Excise Tax, Federal:

This three percent tax is now applied only to local service billed separately from long distance service.

State & Local Taxes: 

This charge is imposed by state, local and municipal governments on goods and services. It may also appear as a “gross receipts” tax in some states.

Carrier Universal Service Charge:

Because telephones provide a vital link to emergency services, to government services and to surrounding communities, it has been our nation’s policy to promote telephone service to all households since this service began in the 1930s. The USF helps to make phone service affordable and available to all Americans, including consumers with low incomes, those living in areas where the costs of providing telephone service is high, schools and libraries and rural health care providers. Congress has mandated that all telephone companies providing interstate service must contribute to the USF. Although not required to do so by the government, many carriers choose to pass their contribution costs on to their customers in the form of a line item, often called the “Federal Universal Service Fee” or “Universal Connectivity Fee”.

Single Bill Fee:

Some carriers charge a monthly fee for combining local and long distance charges onto one bill. This fee is not mandated by the FCC and is not an FCC charge. Some phone companies waive the fee for customers who pay bills online or by credit card. Also, consumers may avoid the “single bill fee” by arranging for separate billing from their long distance carrier.

last reviewed/updated on 08/13/13 


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