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Petition before the FCC Regarding Monthly Line Items and Surcharges Imposed by Telecommunications Carriers

A principal goal of the federal telecommunications laws is to ensure that the charges carriers, both wireline and wireless, impose on consumers for telecommunications services are “just” and “reasonable.” Under these laws, the Commission is obligated to prescribe just, fair and reasonable carrier practices in order to ensure that telecommunications service is provided to all Americans at just and reasonable charges. In its “Truth-in-Billing” (“TIB”) docket the Commission undertook to prescribe carrier practices to help consumers avoid falling prey to unscrupulous telecommunications carriers who hid or mislabeled unauthorized charges on consumers’ telephone bills. In its 1999 Order in the TIB docket, the Commission adopted principles and guidelines designed to provide consumers with basic information they need, both to make informed choices in a competitive telecommunications market and to protect themselves from unscrupulous competitors.