The USF is a government administered fund that’s purpose is to support and help provide telecommunication services in rural and high cost areas, to low income consumers, to government facilities such as schools and libraries, and to health care facilities across the nation.
It is required that all telecommunication companies (including conference call services like ours at this time) collect the Universal Service Fund Fee based on the percentage rate provided by the FCC.
USF Fee Q4: 15.6% (10/01/13 – 12/31/2013)
The Universal Service Fund was created as part of the Telecommunications act of 1996 and is administered by the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC), which manages and oversees the contribution and distribution of the Universal Service Fund.
Intended purpose and goal of the Universal Service Fund Fee
- Assist in providing quality telecommunication services at a reasonable cost for consumers
- Increase the availability of telecommunication services in high cost rural areas and locations
- Provide telecommunication services to public schools, libraries, and health care facilities located in rural areas.
- Provide affordable rates to low income consumers for telecommunication services
Universal Service Fund Fee FAQ’s
How much is the Universal Service Fund Fee?
The amount collected is determined by the FCC and changes on a quarterly basis. For Q4 2013, the contribution is 15.6%.
Does the USF fee apply to government and non-profit organizations?
Yes – the USF is not a tax but rather a fee, so it applies to all consumers of conference call and telecommunication services.
Do you profit from the Universal Service Fund?
No – 100% of the Universal Service Fund collected by Vast Conference is passed on to the Universal Service Administration Corporation, which is responsible for collecting and disbursing of the USF fees collected.
For more information: USF Contribution Factors | USAC