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e-CFR data is current as of September 24, 2020

Title 47Chapter ISubchapter APart 1Subpart A → Subject Group


Title 47: Telecommunication
PART 1—PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE
Subpart A—General Rules of Practice and Procedure


Miscellaneous Proceedings

§1.80   Forfeiture proceedings.

(a) Persons against whom and violations for which a forfeiture may be assessed. A forfeiture penalty may be assessed against any person found to have:

(1) Willfully or repeatedly failed to comply substantially with the terms and conditions of any license, permit, certificate, or other instrument of authorization issued by the Commission;

(2) Willfully or repeatedly failed to comply with any of the provisions of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended; or of any rule, regulation or order issued by the Commission under that Act or under any treaty, convention, or other agreement to which the United States is a party and which is binding on the United States;

(3) Violated any provision of section 317(c) or 508(a) of the Communications Act;

(4) Violated any provision of sections 227(b) or (e) of the Communications Act or of the rules issued by the Commission under sections 227(b) or (e) of that Act; or

(5) Violated any provision of section 1304, 1343, or 1464 of Title 18, United States Code.

(6) Violated any provision of section 6507 of the Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2012 or any rule, regulation, or order issued by the Commission under that statute.

Note to paragraph (a): A forfeiture penalty assessed under this section is in addition to any other penalty provided for by the Communications Act, except that the penalties provided for in paragraphs (b)(1) through (4) of this section shall not apply to conduct which is subject to a forfeiture penalty or fine under sections 202(c), 203(e), 205(b), 214(d), 219(b), 220(d), 223(b), 364(a), 364(b), 386(a), 386(b), 506, and 634 of the Communications Act. The remaining provisions of this section are applicable to such conduct.

(b) Limits on the amount of forfeiture assessed. (1) If the violator is a broadcast station licensee or permittee, a cable television operator, or an applicant for any broadcast or cable television operator license, permit, certificate, or other instrument of authorization issued by the Commission, except as otherwise noted in this paragraph, the forfeiture penalty under this section shall not exceed $37,500 for each violation or each day of a continuing violation, except that the amount assessed for any continuing violation shall not exceed a total of $400,000 for any single act or failure to act described in paragraph (a) of this section. There is no limit on forfeiture assessments for EEO violations by cable operators that occur after notification by the Commission of a potential violation. See section 634(f)(2) of the Communications Act. Notwithstanding the foregoing in this section, if the violator is a broadcast station licensee or permittee or an applicant for any broadcast license, permit, certificate, or other instrument of authorization issued by the Commission, and if the violator is determined by the Commission to have broadcast obscene, indecent, or profane material, the forfeiture penalty under this section shall not exceed $350,000 for each violation or each day of a continuing violation, except that the amount assessed for any continuing violation shall not exceed a total of $3,300,000 for any single act or failure to act described in paragraph (a) of this section.

(2) If the violator is a common carrier subject to the provisions of the Communications Act or an applicant for any common carrier license, permit, certificate, or other instrument of authorization issued by the Commission, the amount of any forfeiture penalty determined under this section shall not exceed $160,000 for each violation or each day of a continuing violation, except that the amount assessed for any continuing violation shall not exceed a total of $1,575,000 for any single act or failure to act described in paragraph (a) of this section.

(3) If the violator is a manufacturer or service provider subject to the requirements of section 255, 716, or 718 of the Communications Act, and is determined by the Commission to have violated any such requirement, the manufacturer or service provider shall be liable to the United States for a forfeiture penalty of not more than $105,000 for each violation or each day of a continuing violation, except that the amount assessed for any continuing violation shall not exceed a total of $1,050,000 for any single act or failure to act.

(4) Any person determined to have violated section 227(e) of the Communications Act or the rules issued by the Commission under section 227(e) of the Communications Act shall be liable to the United States for a forfeiture penalty of not more than $10,000 for each violation or three times that amount for each day of a continuing violation, except that the amount assessed for any continuing violation shall not exceed a total of $1,025,000 for any single act or failure to act. Such penalty shall be in addition to any other forfeiture penalty provided for by the Communications Act.

(5) Any person determined to have violated section 227(b)(4)(B) of the Communications Act or the rules issued by the Commission under section 227(b)(4)(B) of the Communications Act shall be liable to the United States for a forfeiture penalty determined in accordance with paragraphs (A)-(F) of section 503(b)(2) plus an additional penalty not to exceed $10,000.

(6) If a violator who is granted access to the Do-Not-Call registry of public safety answering points discloses or disseminates any registered telephone number without authorization, in violation of section 6507(b)(4) of the Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2012 or the Commission's implementing rules, the monetary penalty for such unauthorized disclosure or dissemination of a telephone number from the registry shall be not less than $100,000 per incident nor more than $1,000,000 per incident depending upon whether the conduct leading to the violation was negligent, grossly negligent, reckless, or willful, and depending on whether the violation was a first or subsequent offense.

(7) If a violator uses automatic dialing equipment to contact a telephone number on the Do-Not-Call registry of public safety answering points, in violation of section 6507(b)(5) of the Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2012 or the Commission's implementing rules, the monetary penalty for contacting such a telephone number shall be not less than $10,000 per call nor more than $100,000 per call depending on whether the violation was negligent, grossly negligent, reckless, or willful, and depending on whether the violation was a first or subsequent offense.

(8) In any case not covered in paragraphs (b)(1) through (b)(6) of this section, the amount of any forfeiture penalty determined under this section shall not exceed $16,000 for each violation or each day of a continuing violation, except that the amount assessed for any continuing violation shall not exceed a total of $122,500 for any single act or failure to act described in paragraph (a) of this section.

(9) Factors considered in determining the amount of the forfeiture penalty. In determining the amount of the forfeiture penalty, the Commission or its designee will take into account the nature, circumstances, extent and gravity of the violations and, with respect to the violator, the degree of culpability, any history of prior offenses, ability to pay, and such other matters as justice may require.

Note to paragraph (b)(8): Guidelines for Assessing Forfeitures. The Commission and its staff may use these guidelines in particular cases. The Commission and its staff retain the discretion to issue a higher or lower forfeiture than provided in the guidelines, to issue no forfeiture at all, or to apply alternative or additional sanctions as permitted by the statute. The forfeiture ceilings per violation or per day for a continuing violation stated in section 503 of the Communications Act and the Commission's rules are described in §1.80(b)(9). These statutory maxima became effective September 13, 2013. Forfeitures issued under other sections of the Act are dealt with separately in section III of this note.

Section I. Base Amounts for Section 503 Forfeitures

ForfeituresViolation amount
Misrepresentation/lack of candor(1)
Construction and/or operation without an instrument of authorization for the service$10,000
Failure to comply with prescribed lighting and/or marking10,000
Violation of public file rules10,000
Violation of political rules: reasonable access, lowest unit charge, equal opportunity, and discrimination9,000
Unauthorized substantial transfer of control8,000
Violation of children's television commercialization or programming requirements8,000
Violations of rules relating to distress and safety frequencies8,000
False distress communications8,000
EAS equipment not installed or operational8,000
Alien ownership violation8,000
Failure to permit inspection7,000
Transmission of indecent/obscene materials7,000
Interference7,000
Importation or marketing of unauthorized equipment7,000
Exceeding of authorized antenna height5,000
Fraud by wire, radio or television5,000
Unauthorized discontinuance of service5,000
Use of unauthorized equipment5,000
Exceeding power limits4,000
Failure to respond to Commission communications4,000
Violation of sponsorship ID requirements4,000
Unauthorized emissions4,000
Using unauthorized frequency4,000
Failure to engage in required frequency coordination4,000
Construction or operation at unauthorized location4,000
Violation of requirements pertaining to broadcasting of lotteries or contests4,000
Violation of transmitter control and metering requirements3,000
Failure to file required forms or information3,000
Failure to make required measurements or conduct required monitoring2,000
Failure to provide station ID1,000
Unauthorized pro forma transfer of control1,000
Failure to maintain required records1,000

1Statutory Maximum for each Service.

Violations Unique to the Service

ViolationServices affectedAmount
Unauthorized conversion of long distance telephone serviceCommon Carrier$40,000
Violation of operator services requirementsCommon Carrier7,000
Violation of pay-per-call requirementsCommon Carrier7,000
Failure to implement rate reduction or refund orderCable7,500
Violation of cable program access rulesCable7,500
Violation of cable leased access rulesCable7,500
Violation of cable cross-ownership rulesCable7,500
Violation of cable broadcast carriage rulesCable7,500
Violation of pole attachment rulesCable7,500
Failure to maintain directional pattern within prescribed parametersBroadcast7,000
Violation of broadcast hoax ruleBroadcast7,000
AM tower fencingBroadcast7,000
Broadcasting telephone conversations without authorizationBroadcast4,000
Violation of enhanced underwriting requirementsBroadcast2,000

Section II. Adjustment Criteria for Section 503 Forfeitures

Upward Adjustment Criteria

(1) Egregious misconduct.

(2) Ability to pay/relative disincentive.

(3) Intentional violation.

(4) Substantial harm.

(5) Prior violations of any FCC requirements.

(6) Substantial economic gain.

(7) Repeated or continuous violation.

Downward Adjustment Criteria

(1) Minor violation.

(2) Good faith or voluntary disclosure.

(3) History of overall compliance.

(4) Inability to pay.

Section III. Non-Section 503 Forfeitures That Are Affected by the Downward Adjustment Factors

Unlike section 503 of the Act, which establishes maximum forfeiture amounts, other sections of the Act, with two exceptions, state prescribed amounts of forfeitures for violations of the relevant section. These amounts are then subject to mitigation or remission under section 504 of the Act. One exception is section 223 of the Act, which provides a maximum forfeiture per day. For convenience, the Commission will treat this amount as if it were a prescribed base amount, subject to downward adjustments. The other exception is section 227(e) of the Act, which provides maximum forfeitures per violation, and for continuing violations. The Commission will apply the factors set forth in section 503(b)(2)(E) of the Act and section III of this note to determine the amount of the penalty to assess in any particular situation. The following amounts are adjusted for inflation pursuant to the Debt Collection Improvement Act of 1996 (DCIA), 28 U.S.C. 2461. These non-section 503 forfeitures may be adjusted downward using the “Downward Adjustment Criteria” shown for section 503 forfeitures in section II of this note.

ViolationStatutory amount after 2020 annual inflation adjustment
Sec. 202(c) Common Carrier Discrimination$12,294, $615/day.
Sec. 203(e) Common Carrier Tariffs$12,294, $615/day.
Sec. 205(b) Common Carrier Prescriptions$24,586
Sec. 214(d) Common Carrier Line Extensions$2,458/day.
Sec. 219(b) Common Carrier Reports2,458/day.
Sec. 220(d) Common Carrier Records & Accounts$12,294/day.
Sec. 223(b) Dial-a-Porn$127,398/day.
Sec. 227(e) Caller Identification$11,766/violation. $35,298/day for each day of continuing violation, up to $1,176,638 for any single act or failure to act.
Sec. 364(a) Forfeitures (Ships)$10,245/day (owner).
Sec. 364(b) Forfeitures (Ships)$2,050 (vessel master).
Sec. 386(a) Forfeitures (Ships).$10,245/day (owner).
Sec. 386(b) Forfeitures (Ships)$2,050 (vessel master).
Sec. 634 Cable EEO$908/day.

(10) Inflation adjustments to the maximum forfeiture amount. (i) Pursuant to the Federal Civil Penalties Inflation Adjustment Act Improvements Act of 2015, Public Law 114-74 (129 Stat. 599-600), which amends the Federal Civil Monetary Penalty Inflation Adjustment Act of 1990, Public Law 101-410 (104 Stat. 890; 28 U.S.C. 2461 note), the statutory maximum amount of a forfeiture penalty assessed under this section shall be adjusted annually for inflation by order published no later than January 15 each year. Annual inflation adjustments will be based on the percentage (if any) by which the Consumer Price Index for all Urban Consumers (CPI-U) for October preceding the date of the adjustment exceeds the prior year's CPI-U for October. The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) will issue adjustment rate guidance no later than December 15 each year to adjust for inflation in the CPI-U as of the most recent October.

(ii) The application of the annual inflation adjustment required by the foregoing Federal Civil Penalties Inflation Adjustment Act Improvements Act of 2015 results in the following adjusted statutory maximum forfeitures authorized by the Communications Act:

Table 1 to Paragraph (b)(9)(ii)

U.S. Code citationMaximum penalty
after 2020 annual
inflation adjustment
47 U.S.C. 202(c)$12,294
   615
47 U.S.C. 203(e)12,294
   615
47 U.S.C. 205(b)24,586
47 U.S.C. 214(d)2,458
47 U.S.C. 219(b)2,458
47 U.S.C. 220(d)12,294
47 U.S.C. 223(b)127,398
47 U.S.C. 227(e)11,766
   35,298
   1,176,638
47 U.S.C. 362(a)10,245
47 U.S.C. 362(b)2,050
47 U.S.C. 386(a)10,245
47 U.S.C. 386(b)2,050
47 U.S.C. 503(b)(2)(A)51,222
   512,228
47 U.S.C. 503(b)(2)(B)204,892
   2,048,915
47 U.S.C. 503(b)(2)(C)414,454
   3,825,726
47 U.S.C. 503(b)(2)(D)20,489
   153,669
47 U.S.C. 503(b)(2)(F)117,664
   1,176,638
47 U.S.C. 507(a)2,029
47 U.S.C. 507(b)297
47 U.S.C. 554908

Note to paragraph (b)(9): Pursuant to Public Law 104-134, the first inflation adjustment cannot exceed 10 percent of the statutory maximum amount.

(c) Limits on the time when a proceeding may be initiated. (1) In the case of a broadcast station, no forfeiture penalty shall be imposed if the violation occurred more than 1 year prior to the issuance of the appropriate notice or prior to the date of commencement of the current license term, whichever is earlier. For purposes of this paragraph, “date of commencement of the current license term” means the date of commencement of the last term of license for which the licensee has been granted a license by the Commission. A separate license term shall not be deemed to have commenced as a result of continuing a license in effect under section 307(c) pending decision on an application for renewal of the license.

(2) In the case of a forfeiture imposed against a carrier under sections 202(c), 203(e), and 220(d), no forfeiture will be imposed if the violation occurred more than 5 years prior to the issuance of a notice of apparent liability.

(3) In the case of a forfeiture imposed under section 227(e), no forfeiture will be imposed if the violation occurred more than 4 years prior to the date on which the appropriate notice was issued.

(4) In the case of a forfeiture imposed under section 227(b)(4)(B), no forfeiture will be imposed if the violation occurred more than 4 years prior to the date on which the appropriate notice is issued.

(5) In all other cases, no penalty shall be imposed if the violation occurred more than 1 year prior to the date on which the appropriate notice is issued.

(d) Preliminary procedure in some cases; citations. Except for a forfeiture imposed under sections 227(b) and 227(e)(5) of the Act, no forfeiture penalty shall be imposed upon any person under this section of the Act if such person does not hold a license, permit, certificate, or other authorization issued by the Commission, and if such person is not an applicant for a license, permit, certificate, or other authorization issued by the Commission, unless, prior to the issuance of the appropriate notice, such person:

(1) Is sent a citation reciting the violation charged;

(2) Is given a reasonable opportunity (usually 30 days) to request a personal interview with a Commission official, at the field office which is nearest to such person's place of residence; and

(3) Subsequently engages in conduct of the type described in the citation. However, a forfeiture penalty may be imposed, if such person is engaged in (and the violation relates to) activities for which a license, permit, certificate, or other authorization is required or if such person is a cable television operator, or in the case of violations of section 303(q), if the person involved is a nonlicensee tower owner who has previously received notice of the obligations imposed by section 303(q) from the Commission or the permittee or licensee who uses that tower. Paragraph (c) of this section does not limit the issuance of citations. When the requirements of this paragraph have been satisfied with respect to a particular violation by a particular person, a forfeiture penalty may be imposed upon such person for conduct of the type described in the citation without issuance of an additional citation.

(e) Alternative procedures. In the discretion of the Commission, a forfeiture proceeding may be initiated either: (1) By issuing a notice of apparent liability, in accordance with paragraph (f) of this section, or (2) a notice of opportunity for hearing, in accordance with paragraph (g).

(f) Notice of apparent liability. Before imposing a forfeiture penalty under the provisions of this paragraph, the Commission or its designee will issue a written notice of apparent liability.

(1) Content of notice. The notice of apparent liability will:

(i) Identify each specific provision, term, or condition of any act, rule, regulation, order, treaty, convention, or other agreement, license, permit, certificate, or instrument of authorization which the respondent has apparently violated or with which he has failed to comply,

(ii) Set forth the nature of the act or omission charged against the respondent and the facts upon which such charge is based,

(iii) State the date(s) on which such conduct occurred, and

(iv) Specify the amount of the apparent forfeiture penalty.

(2) Delivery. The notice of apparent liability will be sent to the respondent, by certified mail, at his last known address (see §1.5).

(3) Response. The respondent will be afforded a reasonable period of time (usually 30 days from the date of the notice) to show, in writing, why a forfeiture penalty should not be imposed or should be reduced, or to pay the forfeiture. Any showing as to why the forfeiture should not be imposed or should be reduced shall include a detailed factual statement and such documentation and affidavits as may be pertinent.

(4) Forfeiture order. If the proposed forfeiture penalty is not paid in full in response to the notice of apparent liability, the Commission, upon considering all relevant information available to it, will issue an order canceling or reducing the proposed forfeiture or requiring that it be paid in full and stating the date by which the forfeiture must be paid.

(5) Judicial enforcement of forfeiture order. If the forfeiture is not paid, the case will be referred to the Department of Justice for collection under section 504(a) of the Communications Act.

(g) Notice of opportunity for hearing. The procedures set out in this paragraph will ordinarily be followed only when a hearing is being held for some reason other than the assessment of a forfeiture (such as, to determine whether a renewal application should be granted) and a forfeiture is to be considered as an alternative or in addition to any other Commission action. However, these procedures may be followed whenever the Commission, in its discretion, determines that they will better serve the ends of justice.

(1) Before imposing a forfeiture penalty under the provisions of this paragraph, the Commission will issue a notice of opportunity for hearing. The hearing will be a full evidentiary hearing before an administrative law judge, conducted under procedures set out in subpart B of this part, including procedures for appeal and review of initial decisions. A final Commission order assessing a forfeiture under the provisions of this paragraph is subject to judicial review under section 402(a) of the Communications Act.

(2) If, after a forfeiture penalty is imposed and not appealed or after a court enters final judgment in favor of the Commission, the forfeiture is not paid, the Commission will refer the matter to the Department of Justice for collection. In an action to recover the forfeiture, the validity and appropriateness of the order imposing the forfeiture are not subject to review.

(3) Where the possible assessment of a forfeiture is an issue in a hearing case to determine which pending application should be granted, and the applicant facing a potential forfeiture is dismissed pursuant to a settlement agreement or otherwise, and the presiding judge has not made a determination on the forfeiture issue, the order of dismissal shall be forwarded to the attention of the full Commission. Within the time provided by §1.117, the Commission may, on its own motion, proceed with a determination of whether a forfeiture against the dismissing applicant is warranted. If the Commission so proceeds, it will provide the applicant with a reasonable opportunity to respond to the forfeiture issue (see paragraph (f)(3) of this section) and make a determination under the procedures outlined in paragraph (f) of this section.

(h) Payment. The forfeiture should be paid electronically using the Commission's electronic payment system in accordance with the procedures set forth on the Commission's website, www.fcc.gov/licensing-databases/fees.

(i) Remission and mitigation. In its discretion, the Commission, or its designee, may remit or reduce any forfeiture imposed under this section. After issuance of a forfeiture order, any request that it do so shall be submitted as a petition for reconsideration pursuant to §1.106.

(j) Effective date. Amendments to paragraph (b) of this section implementing Pub. L. No. 101-239 are effective December 19, 1989.

[43 FR 49308, Oct. 23, 1978, as amended at 48 FR 15631, Apr. 12, 1983; 50 FR 40855, Oct. 7, 1985; 55 FR 25605, June 22, 1990; 56 FR 25638, June 5, 1991; 57 FR 23161, June 2, 1992; 57 FR 47006, Oct. 14, 1992; 57 FR 48333, Oct. 23, 1992; 58 FR 6896, Feb. 3, 1993; 58 FR 27473, May 10, 1993; 62 FR 4918, Feb. 3, 1997; 62 FR 43475, Aug. 14, 1997; 63 FR 26992, May 15, 1998; 65 FR 60868, Oct. 13, 2000; 69 FR 47789, Aug. 6, 2004; 72 FR 33914, June 20, 2007; 73 FR 9018, Feb. 19, 2008; 73 FR 44664, July 31, 2008; 76 FR 43203, July 20, 2011; 76 FR 82388, Dec. 30, 2011; 77 FR 71137, Nov. 29, 2012; 78 FR 10100, Feb. 13, 2013; 78 FR 49371, Aug. 14, 2013; 81 FR 42555, June 30, 2016; 82 FR 8171, Jan. 24, 2017; 82 FR 57882, Dec. 8, 2017; 83 FR 4600, Feb. 1. 2018; 84 FR 2462, Feb. 7, 2019; 85 FR 2318, Jan. 15, 2020; 85 FR 22029, Apr. 21, 2020; 85 FR 38333, June 26, 2020]

§1.83   Applications for radio operator licenses.

(a) Application filing procedures for amateur radio operator licenses are set forth in part 97 of this chapter.

(b) Application filing procedures for commercial radio operator licenses are set forth in part 13 of this chapter. Detailed information about application forms, filing procedures, and where to file applications for commercial radio operator licenses is contained in the bulletin “Commercial Radio Operator Licenses and Permits.” This bulletin is available from the Commission's Forms Distribution Center by calling 1-800-418-FORM (3676).

[47 FR 53378, Nov. 26, 1982, as amended at 58 FR 13021, Mar. 9, 1993; 63 FR 68920, Dec. 14, 1998]

§1.85   Suspension of operator licenses.

Whenever grounds exist for suspension of an operator license, as provided in §303(m) of the Communications Act, the Chief of the Wireless Telecommunications Bureau, with respect to amateur and commercial radio operator licenses, may issue an order suspending the operator license. No order of suspension of any operator's license shall take effect until 15 days' notice in writing of the cause for the proposed suspension has been given to the operator licensee, who may make written application to the Commission at any time within the said 15 days for a hearing upon such order. The notice to the operator licensee shall not be effective until actually received by him, and from that time he shall have 15 days in which to mail the said application. In the event that physical conditions prevent mailing of the application before the expiration of the 15-day period, the application shall then be mailed as soon as possible thereafter, accompanied by a satisfactory explanation of the delay. Upon receipt by the Commission of such application for hearing, said order of suspension shall be designated for hearing by the Chief, Wireless Telecommunications Bureau and said suspension shall be held in abeyance until the conclusion of the hearing. Upon the conclusion of said hearing, the Commission may affirm, modify, or revoke said order of suspension. If the license is ordered suspended, the operator shall send his operator license to the Mobility Division, Wireless Telecommunications Bureau, in Washington, DC, on or before the effective date of the order, or, if the effective date has passed at the time notice is received, the license shall be sent to the Commission forthwith.

[78 FR 23151, Apr. 18, 2013]

§1.87   Modification of license or construction permit on motion of the Commission.

(a) Whenever it appears that a station license or construction permit should be modified, the Commission shall notify the licensee or permittee in writing of the proposed action and reasons therefor, and afford the licensee or permittee at least thirty days to protest such proposed order of modification, except that, where safety of life or property is involved, the Commission may by order provide a shorter period of time.

(b) The notification required in paragraph (a) of this section may be effectuated by a notice of proposed rule making in regard to a modification or addition of an FM or television channel to the Table of Allotments (§§73.202 and 73.504) or Table of Assignments (§73.606). The Commission shall send a copy of any such notice of proposed rule making to the affected licensee or permittee by certified mail, return receipt requested.

(c) Any other licensee or permittee who believes that its license or permit would be modified by the proposed action may also protest the proposed action before its effective date.

(d) Any protest filed pursuant to this section shall be subject to the requirements of section 309 of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended, for petitions to deny.

(e) In any case where a hearing is conducted pursuant to the provisions of this section, both the burden of proceeding with the introduction of evidence and the burden of proof shall be upon the Commission except that, with respect to any issue that pertains to the question of whether the proposed action would modify the license or permit of a person filing a protest pursuant to paragraph (c) of this section, such burdens shall be as described by the Commission.

(f) In order to utilize the right to a hearing and the opportunity to appear and give evidence upon the issues specified in any hearing order, the licensee or permittee, in person or by attorney, shall, within the period of time as may be specified in the hearing order, file with the Commission a written statement stating that he or she will appear at the hearing and present evidence on the matters specified in the hearing order.

(g) The right to file a protest or have a hearing shall, unless good cause is shown in a petition to be filed not later than 5 days before the lapse of time specified in paragraph (a) or (f) of this section, be deemed waived:

(1) In case of failure to timely file the protest as required by paragraph (a) of this section or a written statement as required by paragraph (f) of this section.

(2) In case of filing a written statement provided for in paragraph (f) of this section but failing to appear at the hearing, either in person or by counsel.

(h) Where the right to file a protest or have a hearing is waived, the licensee or permittee will be deemed to have consented to the modification as proposed and a final decision may be issued by the Commission accordingly. Irrespective of any waiver as provided for in paragraph (g) of this section or failure by the licensee or permittee to raise a substantial and material question of fact concerning the proposed modification in his protest, the Commission may, on its own motion, designate the proposed modification for hearing in accordance with this section.

(i) Any order of modification issued pursuant to this section shall include a statement of the findings and the grounds and reasons therefor, shall specify the effective date of the modification, and shall be served on the licensee or permittee.

[52 FR 22654, June 15, 1987]

§1.88   Predesignation pleading procedure.

In cases where an investigation is being conducted by the Commission in connection with the operation of a broadcast station or a pending application for renewal of a broadcast license, the licensee may file a written statement to the Commission setting forth its views regarding the matters under investigation; the staff, in its discretion, may in writing, advise such licensee of the general nature of the investigation, and advise the licensee of its opportunity to submit such a statement to the staff. Any filing by the licensee will be forwarded to the Commission in conjunction with any staff memorandum recommending that the Commission take action as a result of the invesigation. Nothing in this rule shall supersede the application of our ex parte rules to situations described in §1.1203 of these rules.

(Secs. 4, 303, 307, 48 Stat., as amended, 1066, 1082, 1083; (47 U.S.C. 154, 303, 307))

[45 FR 65597, Oct. 3, 1980]

§1.89   Notice of violations.

(a) Except in cases of willfulness or those in which public health, interest, or safety requires otherwise, any person who holds a license, permit or other authorization appearing to have violated any provision of the Communications Act or any provision of this chapter will, before revocation, suspension, or cease and desist proceedings are instituted, be served with a written notice calling these facts to his or her attention and requesting a statement concerning the matter. FCC Form 793 may be used for this purpose. The Notice of Violation may be combined with a Notice of Apparent Liability to Monetary Forfeiture. In such event, notwithstanding the Notice of Violation, the provisions of §1.80 apply and not those of §1.89.

(b) Within 10 days from receipt of notice or such other period as may be specified, the recipient shall send a written answer, in duplicate, directly to the Commission office originating the official notice. If an answer cannot be sent or an acknowledgment cannot be made within such 10-day period by reason of illness or other unavoidable circumstance, acknowledgment and answer shall be made at the earliest practicable date with a satisfactory explanation of the delay.

(c) The answer to each notice shall be complete in itself and shall not be abbreviated by reference to other communications or answers to other notices. In every instance the answer shall contain a statement of action taken to correct the condition or omission complained of and to preclude its recurrence. In addition:

(1) If the notice relates to violations that may be due to the physical or electrical characteristics of transmitting apparatus and any new apparatus is to be installed, the answer shall state the date such apparatus was ordered, the name of the manufacturer, and the promised date of delivery. If the installation of such apparatus requires a construction permit, the file number of the application shall be given, or if a file number has not been assigned by the Commission, such identification shall be given as will permit ready identification of the application.

(2) If the notice of violation relates to lack of attention to or improper operation of the transmitter, the name and license number of the operator in charge (where applicable) shall be given.

[48 FR 24890, June 3, 1983]

§1.91   Revocation and/or cease and desist proceedings; hearings.

(a) If it appears that a station license or construction permit should be revoked and/or that a cease and desist order should be issued, the Commission will issue an order directing the person to show cause why an order of revocation and/or a cease and desist order, as the facts may warrant, should not be issued.

(b) An order to show cause why an order of revocation and/or a cease and desist order should not be issued will contain a statement of the matters with respect to which the Commission is inquiring and will call upon the person to whom it is directed (the respondent) to appear before the Commission at a hearing, at a time and place stated in the order, but not less than thirty days after the receipt of such order, and given evidence upon the matters specified in the order to show cause. However, if safety of life or property is involved, the order to show cause may specify a hearing date less than thirty days from the receipt of such order.

(c) To avail himself of such opportunity for hearing, the respondent, personally or by his attorney, shall file with the Commission, within thirty days of the service of the order or such shorter period as may be specified therein, a written appearance stating that he will appear at the hearing and present evidence on the matters specified in the order. The Commission in its discretion may accept a late appearance. However, an appearance tendered after the specified time has expired will not be accepted unless accompanied by a petition stating with particularity the facts and reasons relied on to justify such late filing. Such petition for acceptance of late appearance will be granted only if the Commission determines that the facts and reasons stated therein constitute good cause for failure to file on time.

(d) Hearings on the matters specified in such orders to show cause shall accord with the practice and procedure prescribed in this subpart and subpart B of this part, with the following exceptions: (1) In all such revocation and/or cease and desist hearings, the burden of proceeding with the introduction of evidence and the burden of proof shall be upon the Commission; and (2) the Commission may specify in a show cause order, when the circumstances of the proceeding require expedition, a time less than that prescribed in §§1.276 and 1.277 within which the initial decision in the proceeding shall become effective, exceptions to such initial decision must be filed, parties must file requests for oral argument, and parties must file notice of intention to participate in oral argument.

(e) Correction of or promise to correct the conditions or matters complained of in a show cause order shall not preclude the issuance of a cease and desist order. Corrections or promises to correct the conditions or matters complained of, and the past record of the licensee, may, however, be considered in determining whether a revocation and/or a cease and desist order should be issued.

(f) Any order of revocation and/or cease and desist order issued after hearing pursuant to this section shall include a statement of findings and the grounds therefor, shall specify the effective date of the order, and shall be served on the person to whom such order is directed.

(Sec. 312, 48 Stat. 1086, as amended; 47 U.S.C. 312)

§1.92   Revocation and/or cease and desist proceedings; after waiver of hearing.

(a) After the issuance of an order to show cause, pursuant to §1.91, calling upon a person to appear at a hearing before the Commission, the occurrence of any one of the following events or circumstances will constitute a waiver of such hearing and the proceeding thereafter will be conducted in accordance with the provisions of this section.

(1) The respondent fails to file a timely written appearance as prescribed in §1.91(c) indicating that he will appear at a hearing and present evidence on the matters specified in the order.

(2) The respondent, having filed a timely written appearance as prescribed in §1.91(c), fails in fact to appear in person or by his attorney at the time and place of the duly scheduled hearing.

(3) The respondent files with the Commission, within the time specified for a written appearance in §1.91(c), a written statement expressly waiving his rights to a hearing.

(b) When a hearing is waived under the provisions of paragraph (a) (1) or (3) of this section, a written statement signed by the respondent denying or seeking to mitigate or justify the circumstances or conduct complained of in the order to show cause may be submitted within the time specified in §1.91(c). The Commission in its discretion may accept a late statement. However, a statement tendered after the specified time has expired will not be accepted unless accompanied by a petition stating with particularity the facts and reasons relied on to justify such late filing. Such petitions for acceptance of a late statement will be granted only if the Commission determines that the facts and reasons stated therein constitute good cause for failure to file on time.

(c) Whenever a hearing is waived by the occurrence of any of the events or circumstances listed in paragraph (a) of this section, the Chief Administrative Law Judge (or the presiding officer if one has been designated) shall, at the earliest practicable date, issue an order reciting the events or circumstances constituting a waiver of hearing, terminating the hearing proceeding, and certifying the case to the Commission. Such order shall be served upon the respondent.

(d) After a hearing proceeding has been terminated pursuant to paragraph (c) of this section, the Commission will act upon the matters specified in the order to show cause in the regular course of business. The Commission will determine on the basis of all the information available to it from any source, including such further proceedings as may be warranted, if a revocation order and/or a cease and desist order should issue, and if so, will issue such order. Otherwise, the Commission will issue an order dismissing the proceeding. All orders specified in this paragraph will include a statement of the findings of the Commission and the grounds and reasons therefor, will specify the effective date thereof, and will be served upon the respondent.

(e) Corrections or promise to correct the conditions or matters complained of in a show cause order shall not preclude the issuance of a cease and desist order. Corrections or promises to correct the conditions or matters complained of, and the past record of the licensee, may, however, be considered in determining whether a revocation and/or a cease and desist order should be issued.

(Sec. 312, 48 Stat. 1086, as amended; 47 U.S.C. 312)

[28 FR 12415, Nov. 22, 1963, as amended at 29 FR 6443, May 16, 1964; 37 FR 19372, Sept. 20, 1972]

§1.93   Consent orders.

(a) As used in this subpart, a “consent order” is a formal decree accepting an agreement between a party to an adjudicatory hearing proceeding held to determine whether that party has violated statutes or Commission rules or policies and the appropriate operating Bureau, with regard to such party's future compliance with such statutes, rules or policies, and disposing of all issues on which the proceeding was designated for hearing. The order is issued by the officer designated to preside at the hearing or (if no officer has been designated) by the Chief Administrative Law Judge.

(b) Where the interests of timely enforcement or compliance, the nature of the proceeding, and the public interest permit, the Commission, by its operating Bureaus, may negotiate a consent order with a party to secure future compliance with the law in exchange for prompt disposition of a matter subject to administrative adjudicative proceedings. Consent orders may not be negotiated with respect to matters which involve a party's basic statutory qualifications to hold a license (see 47 U.S.C. 308 and 309).

[41 FR 14871, Apr. 8, 1976]

§1.94   Consent order procedures.

(a) Negotiations leading to a consent order may be initiated by the operating Bureau or by a party whose possible violations are issues in the proceeding. Negotiations may be initiated at any time after designation of a proceeding for hearing. If negotiations are initiated the presiding officer shall be notified. Parties shall be prepared at the initial prehearing conference to state whether they are at that time willing to enter negotiations. See §1.248(c)(7). If either party is unwilling to enter negotiations, the hearing proceeding shall proceed. If the parties agree to enter negotiations, they will be afforded an appropriate opportunity to negotiate before the hearing is commenced.

(b) Other parties to the proceeding are entitled, but are not required, to participate in the negotiations, and may join in any agreement which is reached.

(c) Every agreement shall contain the following:

(1) An admission of all jurisdictional facts;

(2) A waiver of the usual procedures for preparation and review of an initial decision;

(3) A waiver of the right of judicial review or otherwise to challenge or contest the validity of the consent order;

(4) A statement that the designation order may be used in construing the consent order;

(5) A statement that the agreement shall become a part of the record of the proceeding only if the consent order is signed by the presiding officer and the time for review has passed without rejection of the order by the Commission;

(6) A statement that the agreement is for purposes of settlement only and that its signing does not constitute an admission by any party of any violation of law, rules or policy (see 18 U.S.C. 6002); and

(7) A draft order for signature of the presiding officer resolving by consent, and for the future, all issues specified in the designation order.

(d) If agreement is reached, it shall be submitted to the presiding officer or Chief Administrative Law Judge, as the case may be, who shall either sign the order, reject the agreement, or suggest to the parties that negotiations continue on such portion of the agreement as he considers unsatisfactory or on matters not reached in the agreement. If he rejects the agreement, the hearing shall proceed. If he suggests further negotiations, the hearing will proceed or negotiations will continue, depending on the wishes of parties to the agreement. If he signs the consent order, he shall close the record.

(e) Any party to the proceeding who has not joined in any agreement which is reached may appeal the consent order under §1.302, and the Commission may review the agreement on its own motion under the provisions of that section. If the Commission rejects the consent order, the proceeding will be remanded for further proceedings. If the Commission does not reject the consent order, it shall be entered in the record as a final order and is subject to judicial review on the initiative only of parties to the proceeding who did not join in the agreement. The Commission may revise the agreement and consent order. In that event, private parties to the agreement may either accept the revision or withdraw from the agreement. If the party whose possible violations are issues in the proceeding withdraws from the agreement, the consent order will not be issued or made a part of the record, and the proceeding will be remanded for further proceedings.

(f) The provisions of this section shall not alter any existing procedure for informal settlement of any matter prior to designation for hearing (see, e.g., 47 U.S.C. 208) or for summary decision after designation for hearing.

(g) Consent orders, pleadings relating thereto, and Commission orders with respect thereto shall be served on parties to the proceeding. Public notice will be given of orders issued by an administrative law judge, the Chief Administrative Law Judge, or the Commission. Negotiating papers constitute work product, are available to parties participating in negotiations, but are not routinely available for public inspection.

[41 FR 14871, Apr. 8, 1976]

§1.95   Violation of consent orders.

Violation of a consent order shall subject the consenting party to any and all sanctions which could have been imposed in the proceeding resulting in the consent order if all of the issues in that proceeding had been decided against the consenting party and to any further sanctions for violation noted as agreed upon in the consent order. The Commission shall have the burden of showing that the consent order has been violated in some (but not in every) respect. Violation of the consent order and the sanctions to be imposed shall be the only issues considered in a proceeding concerning such an alleged violation.

[41 FR 14871, Apr. 8, 1976]

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